Now seems to be the time that people both online and off are feeling the need to let the world know how and for whom they’ll be voting in the November general election. I received an e-mail earlier today from someone who I haven’t spoken to in over two years. He just wanted to let me know that he was voting for Bill White in the Texas governor’s race. I sent him a three-word reply: “Thanks for sharing.” My boss, meanwhile, has a “Perry for Governor” bumper sticker on the back of his Prius. He showed it to me when we went to lunch earlier today. I smiled politely, my silent way of saying “Thanks for sharing.”
Needless to say, 2010 will be remembered as a very angry year as far as politics are concerned. As of late, I’ve found myself being asked by several people where I stand politically. I think I tend to confuse them because I’ll often follow a liberal sentiment with a conservative statement. They can’t figure out if I’m a right-winger or a left-winger. Nothing upsets insecure people more than when someone can’t be easily categorized, labeled, or stereotyped.
(I’ve also noticed, oddly enough, that conservatives tend to assume that I’m liberal while liberals assume that I’m conservative. Either way, they all seem to assume that, from their point-of-view, I’m wrong.)
I don’t consider myself to be an activist. I have my own political beliefs and I’m not necessarily shy about voicing them. However, unlike a lot of people, I don’t force my politics on others nor do I judge people based solely on the signs they have sitting out in their front yard. I have friends who are Democrats and I have friends who are Republicans. Whenever talk turns to the last election, I just coyly smile and say that I didn’t vote for either McCain or Obama in the last election.
Political posturing seems to bring out the worst in people. As of late, I’ve had to spend way too much time listening to people accuse Obama of being a Muslim or Sarah Palin of being a Nazi. I’m tired of it. I’m sick of liberals who assume that the ticket to paradise (which, I assume, is full of vestal virgins) can be purchased by mouthing a bunch of slogans and platitudes. I’m sick of conservatives who are so convinced that only they can save the country. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not “disgusted” or “sickened” or “offended” by any of it. I’m just bored.
Some people have embraced the politics of anger and some people have embraced the politics of compassion. As for me, I’ve decided to embrace the politics of boredom.
I’m bored with being told that, as a woman and a feminist, I must naturally be a Democrat. I’m bored with being told that, as a Texan, I must naturally be a Republican.
The only thing that I will ever naturally be is myself.
I’ll be voting in the 2010 election. As for who I’ll be voting for that’s for me to know and you not to worry about. My sisters know how I’m voting. One of them agrees with me. The other two do not. The Bowman Sisters will be cancelling each other out this election year so, if you think I’m not voting for your candidate, you can probably take some comfort in that.
We live in a world where everyone can be — and apparently is — a political pundit. Online, people can reinvent themselves as “Pissed Off Tea Partier” and “Self-Righteous Liberal” and “Wanna-Be Libertine” or “Anarchist Pyromaniac.”
More power to them.
I’m perfectly happy just being Lisa.