Friday, August 31, 2012

Question of the Day

I freely admit that I didn’t watch one live minute of the Republican convention in Tampa this week, so perhaps I missed it. But in all of the wrap-ups, the discussions, the blog posts, the RSS feeds, twitterpations, and whatever else passes for news coverage, I did not hear one candidate, surrogate, pundit, spokesperson, or delegate say anything that made me consider — even for a nanosecond — voting for a Republican.

Maybe I’m in the wrong demographic: I’m a middle-aged gay man with a middle-class income that I earn from working in public education. Right there I see three strikes against me in the GOP platform: my rights as a person are not the same as the straight people, my taxes will probably go up under the GOP budget, and they want to rip the guts out of public sector jobs. In the rest of my family, my parents are at risk if Medicare is gutted, my sister stands to lose healthcare because she doesn’t get full benefits from her job, my brother’s two kids in college could lose Pell grants and cheaper student loans, and my nieces, nephews, and cousins who are under 26 could lose their health insurance if they can’t be included on their parents’ policies.

Those are just the bean-counter reasons. Then there’s the whole attitude about widening the gap between the rich benevolent overlords and placating the “job creators” with even lower taxes so they would be coerced into tossing a few crumbs to the hoi polloi. There’s the attitude of manifest destiny for the great white Christian race who know better than the unsaved souls of the world, and while the idea that E Pluribus Unum looks great on a presidential seal, we all know that women can’t be trusted to make their own decisions about their bodies, immigrants just want to mooch off the system, food stamps are for the lazy ni-CLANGS, and those queers should really keep to themselves. That, more than anything said from the dais in Tampa, is what defines the modern GOP. And I can’t imagine aligning myself with any of it.

So I ask you:

Did you hear anything from the Republican convention that would make you consider voting for their candidates? If so, what?