Sunday, July 04, 2004

Hate Speech and Voting Responsibly

Ah, Campaign 2004. The joy, the insanity. The hate speech.

I walked into Barnes and Nobles today, and in a prominent display they had dozens of political books. All well and good. Here are a few of the titles: "The Bush Hater's Handguide," "The I Hate George W. Bush Reader (Apparently, there's a whole series of these, from attacking the President's cabinet to attacking the whole GOP)." These books might very well make good points. But the titles just turn me off right away. To proclaim such extreme hate is to show that you blind partiality. If you hate something, nothing will change your mind about it, nothing will quench your raging rhetoric, and everything is available for you to twist and use in your hate reign.

The hate campaign is a terrible thing, a terrible thing for Democrats, a terrible thing for Republicans, for homosexuals or heterosexuals, for pro-life or pro-choice. It's just not right.

Vote for Kerry. Vote for Nader. Vote for Bush. By all means, vote for who you think is right. But don't you dare cast a hate vote. Don't you dare ruin democracy that way. You step back and think about this rationally, think about who you're voting for and why. "Anybody but Bush" is a sick mantra. How can we sink to such mindless, degrading hate speech? And degrading is what it is. Can we not put enough effort into this year's election to know why we're voting for who we're voting for? Are the inflammatory words of a few impassioned people going to shift our foundations, our beliefs and our convictions? Are we going to forsake our honor?

It shames the country when we cast hate votes. It shames America because that is not the way our republic democracy is supposed to work. We insult the election when we do that, we insult the candidates, and we insult our fellow countrymen, because we try to steal their votes because of our senseless hate.

Take the hate out of this year's election. Put intelligence and honor back in.

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