Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My Left Blinkers Been On

All this bloggin' makes one reflect a bit. While it was probably a very subtle transition, somewhere along the line I started viewing politics, social standards, virtually everything with a decided bend to the left.

Don't get me wrong, I doubt if any of the liberal bonefides I have in Texas would make me an East coast elitist liberal or a West coast granola munching liberal (though I do like granola). I suspect I still have too much of my West Texas raising and my corporate background to go completely around the bend, but I do tend to favor the more progressive part of any issue. Maybe I always did but now that I'm away from the big business influence I can really let my "freak flag fly" again and do things like vote for the Democrats. I've gone wild.

While going through a thorough introspective review of self (I thought about this for a few minutes, I'm way too shallow to spend to much time on introspection) I think I know where I went wrong and whose fault it is. Because in any situation you must know who is at fault, certainly I can blame someone for this. How typically liberal can you get?

I really think there are three groups and one event I can blame: my wife Marty, my minister Jimmie and my parents Bettye and Larry. Everyone, especially Mom and Dad please groan in unison.

Let's start in reverse order. Larry and Bettye first. They taught me liberalism from a very early age. I know this pains them from time to time, being the staunch Bill O'Reilly, Republican folks that they are. My parents have always taught me tolerance. They took me to church every Sunday where I was taught to "love my neighbor". They taught me to think for myself, to care for others and to care about how our actions impact others. The encouraged me to give of myself to others and to look out for the least of us. My Mother always reminded me to think about how the other guy felt. The led me to understand that differences of color or thought did not mean either was superior or inferior, just different. Sorry guys but you raised me this way. It really is your fault.

Jimmie J, my pastor, my friend, showed me that the difference between doubt and faith was very slight. He and my church made it okay to think differently. They made it okay to be a Presbyterian in a very Baptist state and city. Mostly, by listening to Jimmie, he gave me the confidence to be able to say what I was thinking. I listened to and watched Jimmie and our church grow as I grew myself. Jimmie never rails about anything, but he talks constantly of God's love for ALL of us and he reminds us that we are loved by the one who knows us the best. If you listen to JJ very long you understand that we are all our brother's keeper. See, it's just not my fault. It's the people who keep talking around me.

My wife, my bride. We did a brief yes or no session the other day to establish her liberal street cred. She is against abortion, for gun control, against capital punishment, and really against the war in Iraq. Three out of four and she voted for the President, she qualifies as a bad influence. Marty was really bothered by the war and the reasons given for the war. She was unabashedly anti-Iraq war and she explained that to anyone who would listen. Marty was and is vocal and sure about what she believes. I still marvel at the way my wife engages and tries to advocate for herself and others. She makes me want to stand for something important.

Last, my ex-job. For years I worked in a very typical work environment. An environment that prized agreement with long standing business principles. An environment that did not really encourage diversity of thought. I bought the principles and espoused the principles like a good soldier. I contributed to the PAC because it was pragmatic to do so. I generally kept my mouth shut about politics. I protected my check by protecting my company.

But then TXU and I got a divorce and I stepped out of the liberal closet and took a deep breath and filled my lungs with liberal, progressive air and I felt released to say what I had been taught and to say it loud as Marty does. For me it was a new level of freedom. For those around me it apparently is a bit aggravating. So sorry.

So my introspection is done for the day. I have concluded all of this is really not my fault, I'm just doing what I've been taught and what my role models showed me. Just like the good little leftist I am --it really is someone elses fault. So when Sean, Bill, Ann and others talk about the idiot liberals, guess their talking about me --- ooops....

1 comment:

Erin said...

Let that freak flag fly's about time!