Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Politics of Stupidity

Actor Samuel L. Jackson recently stated that he voted for President Obama solely because Obama is black.  Based on this logic I guess I should vote for a white person.  Preferably a woman.  In the absence of a woman, I guess a common religion will do, which means I should vote for Mitt Romney.

Unfortunately, there is a rather large flaw in this plan.  You see, some Mormons are jerks.  Some are first-class weasels.  Some are incompetent.  Some are liars and cheaters and some are child molesters. Some I wouldn't trust to run a bake sale, let alone the country.

This is not a problem unique to Mormonism, or to blacks, or any other group.  No category of people is totally free from morons or hypocrites or people who would throw their families away to chase after the curviest pencil skirt at the office.  No group is free from murderers or embezzlers or racists or chauvinist pigs.

On the other hand, no group of people is totally free from good, either.  There are persons of every race, religion, gender, and sexual orientation who are good, honest and kind.  There are wonderful atheists.  There are wonderful lesbians.  There are wonderful Muslims, pro-lifers, and Prop 8 supporters.  No group has a monopoly on goodness.  It can be found everywhere, in every people.  So to make the decision of whether someone is good or bad, qualified or unqualified, based solely on race or gender or religion seems to me to be certifiably insane.

I would never make my decision to vote for Mitt Romney based on the fact that we share a religion (otherwise I might have to vote for Harry Reid should he ever run for president, and for my opinion of him see "first-class weasel" above).  I wouldn't vote for someone because, like me, they are female or because they are Jewish or black or gay.  And I wouldn't not vote for someone based on any of those factors either.  To do so would be idiotic. 

I don't care what color you are or what you believe about God.  As long as you are a decent person, I don't care if you call him "Allah" or "Jehovah" or if you believe he doesn't exist.  I care if you are an honest, capable person who shares my view of what government should be doing (or not doing).  I'm not looking for shared doctrine - I have a church congregation for that - or shared skin color or X chromosomes.  I'm looking for shared values.

To say, as Samuel L. Jackson did, that, because they share the same race, Obama's message was not important, is as clueless as it is irresponsible.  Common race does not qualify anyone for anything.  And last time I checked, I thought it was politically incorrect to be making judgments that were only skin deep.

So much for progress.


Anonymous said...

To be fair, Jackson did go on to say:

"I just hoped [Obama] would do some of what he said he was gonna do."

While Jackson did literally say race was his only reason for voting, he contradicts that by giving a soft endorsement of actual Obama policy. I get the sense Jackson's main point was that identity politics is rampant, which it is.

fiona said...

Spot on, Bonnie, spot on.

Sara said...


And I wish about 300 million people would wake up to that post. Makes me want to paste it on every telephone pole and car windshield I can find.

I absolutely agree with you.

Cath said...

"I'm looking for shared values." Me too. Great post.

Twinkies said...


Megan B ♥ said...

Amen. Oh, wait, everyone already said that. I'm so uncreative.