Confrontation makes me squirm. Right this minute, there is a goldfish named Mr. Coffee swimming in the good crystal pitcher I got as a wedding gift, because it’s just not worth the words. Now that a fish has used it for his toilet, I’m never going to use the pitcher again anyway – unless Ann Romney should stop by for an iced tea. Oh, give me a break, I’ll sterilize it first, but I can’t very well serve her out of my Rubbermaid gallon jug, can I?
I love politics. But because I hate confrontation, I have a very hard time sitting through a debate. I start out attentive and enthusiastic, but at the first cringe-causing moment, I suddenly find myself catching up on Dr. Who, with no real idea of how that happened. I will however, stay up past midnight for the MSNBC after-party with Twitter on my laptop and CNN in the picture-in-picture, telling me what I missed.
I think there are questions that could keep me from straying, but I know they are never going to be asked, although now that President Obama has come out in favor of marriage equality, there is a very good chance of a gay rights discussion. If I were writing the questions, I would make my first one why April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, who are challenging Michigan’s restrictive law should not be able to adopt their own children. I think Governor Romney’s answer to that might be riveting; especially in the light of his recent surprise at discovering gay people have families.
Besides the indignity of gay citizens being denied equal rights, which I hope will get some debate time for real tonight, I have five of other questions I wish I could ask. Since I can’t, I will ask them here. If you have a subject you’d like to hear discussed, I invite you to leave it below in the comment section. We’ll think of it as an opportunity for catharsis. Here are mine:
1. Why didn’t the government save the banks by saving the homeowners? Housing is still a drag on local property tax collection, which funds our cities, and is a drain on personal wealth. Instead of refinancing underwater houses with low-interest mortgages that homeowners will be paying into their eighties, why shouldn’t the banks who caused the crash share half the loss of equity suffered by the homeowner?
2. In the wake of the assault on Representative Gabby Giffords and the Colorado movie theater shooting, why can’t we even talk about renewing the ban on assault weapons and large ammunition clips? Citizens shouldn’t have to face that kind of firepower because Wayne LaPierre of the NRA has to compensate for an unfortunate natural endowment. (If I were actually AT the debate, I would probably leave off the Wayne LaPierre part.)
3. Why do taxpayers have to subsidize minimum wage workers with food assistance and health care? Why can’t we insist employers of adults pay a wage greater than the poverty level so their workers don’t need assistance and become tax-paying consumers? And before you make the “employers can’t afford it and won’t hire anyone ever again” argument, I would remind you a similar argument was made to support slavery. Is it immoral to pay a working adult a wage that doesn’t allow him to survive?
4. At the end of life we have a brain wave standard that determines human life has ended, though the body may live on. Why can’t we use the same brain wave standard at the beginning of life as we do at the end? Brain Birth. It is an actual branch of medical ethics, but we never discuss it. Abortions would be allowed on demand before brain waves are present, and only to save the life or health of the mother after.
5. Yesterday the court stayed a decision that would keep the president from being able to detain an American citizen indefinitely without charges. How do you justify that power? Doesn’t the very concept strike you as un-American and an abuse just waiting to happen? What is there to keep political enemies from “disappearing”?
Those are my five “off the wall” questions. I know they are never going to come up, because these debates rarely stray from what is in the main-stream news. Still a girl can dream. Is there something you’d like to ask? Here’s your opportunity.
Jean Ann Esselink is straight friend to the gay community. Proud and loud Liberal. Closet writer of political fiction. Black sheep agnostic Democrat from a conservative Catholic family. Living in Northern Oakland County Michigan with Puck the Wonder Beagle.
Debate Image from. freedigitalphotos.net
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