Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Coming Together

Last week Senator Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina) said this in relation to President Obama's health care reform plan: "If we're able to stop Obama on this, it will be his Waterloo. It will break him."

It somewhat reminded me of Rush Limbaugh's quote earlier this year where he said, "I hope [Obama] fails." Much as I dislike Rush Limbaugh and his philosophies, I do understand that what he was saying was that he wanted Obama to fail because he didn't want policies he disagreed with to succeed. That being said, I do not like the attitude that both Senator Demint and Rush Limbaugh seem to promote of wanting someone to fail because they don't align with their political ideology.

One thing Rush Limbaugh said in the same commentary from which his above quote came was, "[The liberals] didn't give Bush a chance in 2000. Before he was inaugurated the search-and-destroy mission had begun...Were the liberals out there hoping Bush succeeded or were they out there trying to destroy him before he was even inaugurated?"

I have to say that I think President Bush is the worst president I have known in my lifetime, but I can't remember ever hoping for him to fail or wanting to "break him." I certainly feel, too, that I often tried to give him the benefit of the doubt until he proved himself unworthy of it. Again, I understand what Limbaugh is saying. He probably feels much the same way about Obama's policies as I felt about Bush's, and I would assume he means that he is just as uneager for the the policies he disagrees with to succeed as perhaps I was regarding some of the Bush policies I found distasteful. But that doesn't mean I wanted to Bush to fail to be a good leader or to do things I hoped would be in the best interest of the American citizens. And perhaps that's the problem; that how we achieve those things are different for Rush Limbaugh or George W. Bush or Barack Obama or me. I mean, I think most people want a lot of the same things: life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, etc. But different people and factions have different ideas about how to achieve those things.

In response to Senator DeMint's comments, President Obama said, "Think about that. This isn't about me. This isn't about politics. This is about a health care system that is breaking America's families, breaking America's businesses and breaking America's economy. And we can't afford the politics of delay and defeat when it comes to health care. Not this time, not now. There are too many lives and livelihoods at stake."

Look, I'm not saying that Barack Obama's health care plan is the way to go. In this economy, especially, I understand people's concern about the cost of a major overhaul of our health care system. I also understand people are afraid of socialized health care (I'm not one of those people, but I get it). But what is true is that our health care system is broken, and a lot of people are suffering as a result. I just wish Senator DeMint had more of an attitude of "How can we help the American people with their health care issues?" rather than, "Ooh, Obama's gonna go down if this fails!" And maybe he does, and this sound bite just doesn't reflect that.

I just wish instead of criticizing each other and bickering and rejecting each other simply based on party lines that somehow politicians could come together and figure out how to help the people they represent. I know that's hard, if not impossible, when you're dealing with factions that have very different ideas about how to achieve the same goal, but it just annoys me.

I always feel, too, here in Utah that whenever I write my representatives about anything, they almost always seem to have the opposite point-of-view as mine. I'm not saying my point-of-view is right or better than theirs, but it is frustrating sometimes when you feel you have no voice.

I don't think Barack Obama is perfect, but I did vote for him and I genuinely like and respect him, and I do think he is doing his best to serve the American people (much as I'm sure many people felt about our last president). And I also think after eight years of policies that have gotten us into a lot of trouble, in my opinion, it might be nice to see what happens if we try some new tactics. Maybe those will fail, too. I don't know. I certainly don't hope so. But somehow people have got to learn to come together for the greater good.

If Obama's plans are flawed, then I am hopeful that people from both parties can work together to fix those flaws and help the people they serve. Naive, I know, but I can dream, can't I?

In other news, my mom and I ran into my pretty conservative uncle today. He and his family are the only ones I have not talked to about my sexuality (nor did I invite them to my wedding, which I'm not sure was the right choice, but was the one I felt I needed to make at the time). Anyway, I finally told him. He didn't even bat an eye. In fact, his first question was, "So what does your partner do for a living?" Just another lesson to me that when it has come to my sexuality, I have often underestimated the people that I felt would most have a problem with it. Some of the people I have expected the most guff from have been the most compassionate.

My extended family is getting together for a party next week when Jonah is in town. It will be nice for him to get to know them better (and vice-versa). Jonah will be here for a whole week. I'm so excited. I miss my husband terribly. In fact, I'm looking forward to unemployment just because it means I can go be with him in Las Vegas for a while (although the lack of a job is somewhat worrisome).

Anyway, that's it.


Chedner said...

I agree, completely. I've been ├╝berly frustrated with people being so intent on destroying the "other side" that they are doing very little, if anything at all, to make life a better place for everybody... I guess they figure that the best way they can do such is by shooting the "enemy"... sigh...

chosha said...

I kept hoping Bush would surprise me, in a good way. It was always the opposite. It irks me that they want the health care plan to fail, not because they think it's a bad plan, but because it's Obama's plan. Do they care at all about the American people?