doclinkin wrote:For what its worth I appreciate da1andonly showing up for his single issue. I don't have a problem with him having a principled stand on something he honestly feels. Myself I feel like life is too complicated to have a single hill to defend in a war on all fronts but if the hill is the lives of children --even if it is based in a misapprehension of biology-- then still that's a better hill to defend than the rights of billionaires to keep more of their money.
Two pregnancies of my wife ended in miscarriage. It was hard. Life happens. I still in my life have only met one woman for whom an abortion was regarded like birth control. I do think it is more dangerous not to fund organizations like Planned Parenthood who work hard to prevent unwanted pregnancy with affordable or free birth control and education, but I am proud of them for saying they will no longer accept public funding so that they aren't subject to the political conversation.
I think da1 may be misguided in his support for people who do not have his best interests at heart. But I do think he has a good heart. Or would like to think he does. And I think a majority of R voters think similarly to how he does. Everything he agreed to on the other page is anathema to the public stance of the people he has elected. But the people in charge of shaping the narrative and choosing the sides are very very very good at what they do. That is why they are billionaires and why they run the country from behind the shell account of a few politicians with limited careers in public life.
The one piece that he is missing is that he has bought into the narrative that people who are on the other side of the aisle vote for their best interest. Instead of a common good. Voter turnout is low in this country. And the higher your income level the more likely you are to vote. Liberal or republican. The majority of people on the left end of the spectrum are simply voting to put into action principles that you agree with: if government exists it is to define a common good and work towards that. And yeah somebody has to pay for that. So the people who can afford it best are the ones who will likely be required to give more. They can afford it better.
The rest is just splitting percentages on what it means to 'afford' and 'better'.
One small piece that da1 misses as an immigrant is the rich cultural heritage and family support that Indians have, and the concept that they are not the focus of a pogrom effectively the way Spanish speaking immigrants are. It costs a plane ticket to get here from India and you need family to stay with while you work your way up, and the opportunities they provide by having already established a foothold. Every Dunkin Donuts I know, most of the Hotels I have ever stayed in, and it's a stereotype but with a basis in reality: every chain convenience store on my way to and from work is owned or staffed by people from the Indian subcontinent. Yes they have opportunities here that they would not have elsewhere. And they come from a culture that prizes education and encourages their kids to do so if they can. Because the conversation interests me and because I only need 4 hours of sleep a night I read a great deal on the residual negative effects of the Indian caste system in america, in addition to how other non Hindu groups are oppressed and their advancement suppressed by not buying into the caste system in India itself.
Given that level of stratification preventing advancement based on cultural prejudices, guaranteed many of his countrymen would walk here if they could. America does provide opportunities that other countries do not. But given that they can't walk or swim, even the ones who land with 20$ in their pocket have family here and a visa or a passport or the means to buy a plane ticket.
I get it. You felt targeted and were uncomfortable in Baltimore when you had to walk to your car. So moved to Houston where presumably you have family and there is a large thriving Indian community of people who look and eat as you do. And with the memory of that discomfort you have some innate prejudices that inform your political choices, in feeling that since you know people who worked their way up, why is this advancement not open to everyone?
The fact is, much like India though less openly, there is a caste system here in the US. People tend to hire people who remind them of themselves. There will tend to be a tyranny of the majority wherever you are. Some cultural prejudices work against people.
When it comes to Spanish speaking immigrants you won't find harder working people than many from our southern neighbors. You can't build a house or have a landscaping business or open a restaurant if you don't want to hear Spanish being spoken. Like your countrymen they tend to move to areas and businesses where family members have laid a foothold. The difference is nobody is targeting public policy against Indians. (Unless they are muslim of course).
And the descendants of a captive population in our African American citizens have not been allowed to have a cultural tradition. Unlike African immigrants who themselves do come here to study and find opportunities. Here the primary culture of african american descendants has been one of survival. In making do with whatever hardship life hands you. It shows up in artistic expression whether blues or jazz or rock and roll or R&B or motown or soul or hiphop or shoot in athletic expression like basketball. But it also means Black americans have been typecast in our national movie as outcasts, underclass, villains. You under estimate how hard it is to transcend that cultural narrative. That the only role models you see are athletic or artistic. That even our underfunded inner city educational system is used partly as low security detention centers. That there is little expectation of success becasue nobody is teaching you how, and the opportunities are not presented to you. If the majority tends to hire people who look like them (not you) and banks won't give you loans etc. Then what. And if cops are disproportionately arresting people simply because you fit the description of some other poor dude who made a hard decision. It's hard to feel like the American dream is your dream when it was built on the murder and forced labor and rape of a couple hundred years of your ancestry. And there still is a caste system that says your role isn't even street sweeper but a body in a cell somewhere, filling a space and earning money for a for-profit penitentiary. So some politician can feel good about seeming like a tough Law and Order kinda guy while collecting big fundraising checks from that prison corporation.
It's a mess.
Little guys like us, even the struggling middle class little guys, working guys, we are pitted against each other. Thinking the enemy is the bored cats who made you uncomfortable walking to your car. Not the fact that Baltimore used to have a thriving economy until the mega corporations that ran the port automated and shifted their profits overseas. And American manufacturing was shifted to Chinese children, the same way every call center is staffed in India or the Philippines. Just to save a corporation a few dollars. Maximize shareholder profit. Making the well off even richer, based on someone else's labor.
I've taught schools in the inner city. Grew up in the urban northeast. People are both lazy and hardworking at the same time. Every kid I knew in those schools would work their tail off to earn a dollar. Even kids I knew who ended up slinging drugs worked harder than a hardware store manager or desk attendant. If there was worthy valuable work available they'd do it. So long as there was any pride in it. It didn't feel like being used.
I don't know. I think we all want the same things, it's just hard to step into another person's shoes and some people are more vulnerable to fear and resentment. And yeah some people are born with advantages that other people don't have. A safety net or a head start or a cultural expectation. These things matter. It's hard to see outside yourself sometimes. but. In the case of da1andonly I think here is a guy whose heart is in the right place in a lot of ways, he just has heard some incredibly well crafted and insidious lies that feel like a romantic cause to champion.
First and foremost, sorry for the losses you and your wife experienced. As mentioned, no one should ever have to deal with that, and people like pancake may feel like its no loss, but those with a heart or those who experienced it can empathize.
Second, thank you for the great post, if only others on your side could do the same. But the likes of pancake, querdo, jwiz, zonk, and point (and i actually liked point) embody Trump more than they'll ever admit. The name calling, the immaturity, yet they think they're better than him, he can't do it, but they can.
Abortion is my main issue, that's definitely obvious with my points. But what's frustrating is what can only be described as the hypocrisy many on the left side of the issue embody. The fact that many call abortion a Christian issue and the defense is don't push your religious belief on us, when abortion is never clearly laid out in he Bible. Sure it can be easily interpreted as such and any God would want a life to be protected, but still not clearly state din any verse. Whereas helping the poor is splattered throughout many books of the Bible. This is what's aggravating, treating it like a buffet. This virtue and practice should be forced on everyone via a progressive tax system, but abortion, no, that doesn't fit our agenda or benefit us.
If we want to say Indian and Chinese immigrants have an advantage due to education, okay, I do question just how far an education from a 3rd world country really goes here, but it's a valid argument. The fix then is to improve the education system, put more money into it, paying more in taxes to improve the education system, even if you don't have kids, that behooves everyone as a whole. More than doubling the minimum wage only helps those making minimum wage.