Thursday, November 06, 2008
A Cautiously Optimistic Step in the Right (actually left) Direction
A new day has dawned in the shared collective experience of us Americans. We have come a very long way since slavery and the subsequent institutionalized racism that existed up to the 1960's. It took decades of courageous and dedicated individuals to fight misconceptions and inhumane behavior by our government. The thought that certain individuals in our society were inherently inferior to others does unfortunately continue to even our proudest day in terms of civil rights. Yet, we shouldn't spend this time congratulating each other on a job well done, but should instead proceed to move our nation forward through reason, critical thinking, and especially progressive behavior. It must be understood that even the most conservative politician of today's standards would be a stark liberal in the 1930's. Our progressing sense of social justice and equality has yet to become universal, even within the boundaries of the United States, but the walls of injustice are continuing to erode and become relics of the past. The long road towards liberty and virtuous freedom is no where near over, and yet, we know for a fact that we're standing on the path that will take us on this monumental journey. We can no longer divide ourselves into races and other categories, but must work hard to educate the socioeconomically challenged. We must embrace the unknown and discard our archaic notions of religion providing us with morality and ethics. If we can learn to value a human's life as much as we value green paper, we will have succeeded in our collective mission. Until the arrival of that day, we'll have our proud moments, our successes and progressive steps, but we'll also know that there's a lot more to be done to achieve the goal of reducing human suffering, and expanding reason. President elect Barack Obama has given hope and optimism to a country that was reeling from oppression and near autocratic rule. The freedom and pride that many of us feel is still all but fleeting. When we awaken from our drunken celebration with a massive hangover that involves a near collapsed economy, anthropogenic climate change, seemingly endless wars for limited resources, and a policy of supporting tyrannical regimes while admonishing others of equal magnitude, we will have to maintain some degree of cautious optimism, but must work twice as hard to improve these global problems. Just pressing a few buttons or marking a few pieces of paper to prove that we voted requires the least amount of our effort. We must unite, not only nationally, but globally, and tackle impediments with clear insight and mature reasoning. The days of biased political agendas and unilateral support for perceived allies must be over. If we're going to hold Iran to certain nuclear standards, then we must do the same with Israel. If we're determined to develop alternative eneregies, then we must also entertain the thought of replacing our toxic coal burning reactors with the new generation of nuclear ones. We can't politicize issues that must be applied across the spectrum. It is time that we drop our political alliances and do what is best for our country as a whole. Working on accessible medical care for all, hybrid and alternative fueled vehicles, and especially engaging in research and development for scientific and technological progress. We must overturn the restrictions on Stem Cell research, government funded climate studies, and a whole host of other issues that have become politicized by the religious right. Although I am certain that many may not agree with my views on the reduced role of religion in the future of our society, the intimate entanglement of religion and national policy must end. We cannot continue to dictate national policy because some religious idiots believe that a few cells have more rights than the woman who's going to carry its development for nine months into a hopefully functioning member of society. Limiting one's civil rights because some religiously intolerant individuals read too much into their ancient, historically inaccurate, and misanthropic texts, should be a crime in a progressively minded society. Looking at the failure of the Republican party and the various excuses for it is groundless unless one realizes just how fiscally conservative individuals have remained silent as the religiously intolerant, and scientifically illiterate morons have dictated platform policies. If you were a single issue voter who was hoping McCain's tax break could provide more retained money in your pocket, did you not consider the implications on the global scale of his narrow minded views? His lack of diplomatic tact would not go well with the world, and our arrogant attitudes have only emboldened our enemies to act more brazenly. It's only through leading the world with example that we can hope to reach all corners of it. Yet, we have one party that has based its social agenda on the 19th century. Denying the truth of evolution, allowing the civil liberties of women, immigrants, gays, religious minorities, etc., all contribute to the loss of respect for the party that pretends to represent the individual. They care more for stagnation and not progression. Leave it to them to regress us back to a more comfortable existence like they must envision the Middle Ages to be. Now is the time to discard archaic religious notions, and maintain a dignified society. The paradox in this situation results from those impededing progress who must eventually face the future. As our society evolves and our sensibilities become more tolerant and enlightened, those who wish to maintain their racist hatred, extremist religious tendencies, and lack of education, will become extinct. Either we choose to move at a crawl and risk stagnating, or worse, regressing from more enlightened countries of the world, or we fully embrace the future. We can't fear the elite, and we must be equally willing to hold a flame to the feet of our current crop of elected individuals. They must uphold the standards to which we elected them, and regardless of the historical nature of these elections, their primary responsibility is the future, not the past. If anyone in the last 30 years is capable of moving us in the proper direction, it is President Elect Barack Obama. Let us hope that our support is well placed, and history will judge our actions as the turning point in America's global resurgance. We can once again lead the world in science, technology, medicine, economic policy, and the talent through which a well rounded and balanced education will provide.