10 September 2008

Single Issue

I'm not a single issue voter, and I don't know anyone who is. Except, by proxy, my friend's 70-year-old neighbor who told her that, though she'd been planning to vote for Obama, with the addition of Sarah Palin to the ticket, she's going to vote for McCain. Despite against everything they stand for. She's old, she doesn't think there's enough time left for her to see another woman in the White House. She's been fighting for abortion rights all her life. She's not going to need one anymore; let the young women take over.

If I were a single issue voter, I might, for instance, object to the fact that Obama voted to authorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, with its provisions for warrantless wire taps. In fact, I do object to it, but not enough to keep me from voting for him. I have to hope that as a former constitutional law professor -- one of his former jobs you didn't hear mocked at the RNC, I guess because it's kind of hard to make fun of someone for being an expert in the document that guides, or at least is suppose to guide, the way our country is run -- that he understands that FISA can never be allowed to become part of the landscape.

The only issue that comes close to singularity for me is homeland security. By which I don't mean building more walls to keep out undocumented Mexicans, though I accept the fact that terrorists could be intermingled with those future landscapers and restaurant workers. (Remember, however, the 9/11 hijackers came in not over the fence, but through the front door, step right this way, sirs, and please do attend all the highly unusual, but apparently not at all suspicious flying lessons you like.)

Homeland security means one thing to me: preventing another attack on my and other big cities. America may be voting small-town values this election, but oddly enough, 70% of us live in urban areas. A New York Times op-ed yesterday talked about the high likelihood of a nuclear attack on Manhattan in the next ten years, and how each of the candidates are likely to prevent it. The author was not particularly sanguine about either Obama or McCain, but did say that of the two, Obama understands the threat better.

That's what I want. Someone who understands first, then acts. Not someone who, like John McCain, believes the 9/11 terrorists had ties to Iraq, then gets us into a long war with massive casualties and distracts us from the real tasks at hand: finding Osama bin Laden, dismantling his organization, and preventing a new al Qaeda from forming.

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Blogger Jen Anderson said...

I loved the Daily Show's coverage of the Republican Convention, especially when they went around asking delegate to explain what small town values are. One of them said it meant not locking your doors at night. I guess that's why they need all those guns to protect their families and property.

5:00 PM  

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