Friday, October 15, 2004

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." --Edmund Burke

Today, it seems we live in a country that's more polarized by political issues than ever before. I suppose I would have stood by such an aphorism blindly even a few weeks ago in speaking out on my political views. However, in the past few weeks I've become increasingly disturbed by the dangerously polarized nature of the political atmosphere in this country today.

The media places far too much attention on the undecided. I am beginning to think that the undecided are as real as Amazons. Today, each side of any of the morally-charged political issue up for vote could insist that the above quote by Burke was true. And they could insist that not acting politically to insure the dominance or even survival of their political views (religious beliefs) allows the other side (which more often than not, they consider .

Being obsessed or at the very least reverent of the past, I often think that I am fortunate to be alive at this point in time. I have choices that I would not even be able to entertain if I were alive half a century ago. I can make choices regarding my life, thinking, and career that were not socially acceptable half a century ago. I can read about, think, discuss, and write about any subject I chose. I can use my own intellect and judgement to discern what I want to believe and what I don't. I do not have to listen or follow the dictates of any body of belief or other individual than myself. I am confident that I can make choices that suit me. I can live in our society and help it prosper by contributing what I can. I can simply be happy if I choose to be. I appreciate that others even those I disagree with have the right to say and believe as I do. I think that in this country we are raised to believe the erroneous belief that our own viewpoints should be shared by others.

It's neither politically correct nor democratic to admit that one fears the majority. It's definitely not politically correct to admit that one fears the stupidity of the masses, and it certainly will not win any converts to my opinions, but alas, I have to finally admit that while I've spent most of my life wishing that I could find security in knowing that my beliefs are shared by others, I should simply be grateful that I can believe as I do.

"When the people fear the government, you have tyranny. When the government fears the people, you have freedom." - Thomas Paine


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