Thursday, June 18, 2009

Not my money, nor my vote!

I usually receive at least one piece of mail daily that is asking for a donation of money. The bulk of them are from politicians, with an occasional one from a cause I feel is worth contributing to. I don't have much money to play around with, so I choose very carefully. I can't tell you how many I have returned to the DNC (Democratic National Committee) along with a note letting them know that I would never send them one red cent until they grew a backbone and started doing their job in the public's interest, not their own. They still haven't gotten the message, because they keep sending me the same form time after time.
During the last election campaign, I did some volunteer work here locally for the Obama campaign, but did not give money. I was initially for Dennis Kucinich for President, even though I knew the national media and the Democratic Party would never back him because he is too honest and not a pretty boy. I even told the guy at the Obama campaign headquarters here in Rock Springs, Wyoming, that Obama was not my first choice. However, after he answered some specific doubts and questions about Barack Obama, I became an ardent supporter and did whatever I could as a volunteer, short of contributing money. Not since the assassination of Senator Robert Kennedy had I done any work for a candidate. After he was murdered, I had lost faith in politics. It felt really good to be able to believe in a candidate again after all those years. With each new speech he gave and each policy statement of his I read, I became genuinely convinced that Barack Obama deserved to be elected President. I wrote letters, answered phones, made calls, talked to people, voted for him in the Sweetwater County Caucus, and totally backed him as a candidate. To my surprise, along with millions of other hopeful American citizens who voted for him, we got him elected. The hopefulness and pride in what we Americans had done was almost overwhelming.
Now that he is our President, I am seeing some very distressing signs that my vote was obtained with more than a little truth-bending. I still approve of a lot of what he has achieved in a short time, but am growing uneasy with his waffling on single payer health care and his back-stabbing of the LGBT community, denial of the release of torture pictures, the expansion of the war in Afghanistan, the cross border bombing of Pakistan, the continued use of non-military security in both wars and the supplemental budget for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I could list a few more things also, but when I think about the list it makes me both sad and angry. I'm not naive enough to think that all promises made on the campaign trail will be kept, but I also did not expect to be lied to yet again. I keep hoping that he will do a turnaround and show us the face we believed in during the campaign, but I won't won't hold my breath while waiting. You know that old saying; Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me? That's how I feel. Not only will I not contribute money, I will not contribute my time either. Unless I see some real progress for the American people in the next three and a half years, I will not vote for him again. In fact, I won't vote for President at all, I'd rather withhold my vote than vote the wrong way again. I don't like being lied to, and I'll bet that there are a lot of unhappy Obama voters out there who feel the way I do. Fool me twice, shame on me!

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