Since so many people have posted wanting to know my personal beliefs, I thought it would only be fair to accommodate those of you who took time to post the questions. These are my views and may or may not reflect John’s views.
I am a Democrat because I believe in the two principles Andy Jackson introduced to the party. Those principles are Social Justice and Economic Fairness. To me, if you follow those, you end up being a pretty good Democrat.
I am Pro-God and Pro-Choice. I don’t think God gives government the power to intrude in such a delicate and personal decision.
I am Pro-Gun and Anti-NRA. The NRA screwed us in the Webb and Warner campaigns. There is no question that the NRA has evolved into an acronym for “Now Republican Altogether”. From first-hand experience, I learned they were more concerned with holding the Republican majority in 2006 than they were in electing pro-gun candidates. I have quit paying my dues.
I am Pro-Civil Unions. That’s covered under social justice. Both times I got married (0-2) the preacher said “what God hath joined together”, not what the Federal Government or any state “hath joined together”. My personal belief is that with strong Civil Unions, the legal objective is met. Let the Churches handle the rest. If a Church wants to marry gays, I don’t think it’s any of my business.
I’ve got a problem with the Death penalty. It’s not a faith-based view but one that comes under social justice and economic fairness. I don’t believe there is equality in our judicial system. A wealthy guy and a poor guy go to the same courtroom for the same offense. Who are you betting on to walk? I am obviously Pro-Civil Rights. That definitely comes under social justice.
I think we need to get the hell out of Iraq. It’s not a war we can win. We can call it the “War on Terror” all we want, but the enemy calls it the Crusades. They’re fighting over who has the best God, and that is one helluva motivational tool for them. When Richard the Lionhearted couldn’t win that war, what the hell makes Bush think he can win it?
In answer to the good question about what progressives will have to cede in order for Democrats to win in rural America, I think that progressives will have to give up only one piece of ground to wage a strong rural campaign. While at the same time, the Democratic Party will be enlisting a bunch of new troops. The trade-off is accepting our strong affection for the Second Amendment. If you’re anti-gun in rural America, you can’t win. However, you can win if you talk about strong enforcement of existing gun laws. Something to keep in mind is that rural people don’t want guns in the hands of criminals any more than the most rabid of the anti-gunners. Our culture simply believes strongly in our sporting traditions and self-defense.
I am certain I missed some issue, and I am just as certain that yall will let me know.