Someone on Twitter yesterday made some comments about how he voted, then said something to the effect of, "I guess that shows how left-wing liberal I am. If that offends you, then I'm not sure how or why you're still following me."
Of course he went on to add, "Right-wingers are welcome here, no doubt, but if my beliefs don't work for you, you should probably look elsewhere..."
These aren't direct quotes - not at all - but they did make me think...
...as did seeing a lot more support of the GOP on my Facebook feed than I expected, and since (in my mind) the GOP has done so much more harm than good lately, it surprised me.
So here I am. I am going to lay my beliefs on the line in this blog post. If you disagree with them to a point where they make your skin crawl, well, then, I'm not sure why you're still following me.
That said, you're still welcome here. Because I believe in the right of everyone to have their own opinions...so long as their opinions don't start influencing my life.
But anyway, in no particular order, here's my belief system. I think it's important you know where I stand if you plan to continue reading this blog:
I believe in marriage equality. I believe two people in love should be allowed to marry, and to have that marriage recognized by our state and federal governments. I don't believe you can force a church/religious group to accept same-sex marriage, but if I were gay and wanted to marry and my church told me I couldn't...I'd find a different church.
I love the new Pope. Even though I'm a Jew, I love his progressive views, and his vision for Catholicism of the future.
I believe I am the only person who has the right to make decisions that affect my body. I believe in access to multiple forms of birth control, as decided upon by my doctor and me. I don't believe the government has a right to tell me what I can or cannot do to my body.
I believe in safe access to abortions for women who need it. I believe if we make abortion illegal, it will go back to being done in filthy rooms with inadequate tools, and I believe women will die.
I do not, however, believe in abortion as birth control. It's a serious decision, and while I understand mistakes happen, I also understand you have to learn from your mistakes.
I believe I will never figure out how I feel about the death penalty. My entire being rails against the idea that one human can tell another they deserve to die...but I also understand the burden of lifetime jail sentences, and I also believe that some people are truly evil.
I believe my chosen faith (strains of Judaism mixed with a healthy dose of skepticism) is mine to choose. I don't believe there's any single right answer to who or what God is or is not. I believe any God above would welcome a person who questions, who wonders, and who does not accept blindly all that is told to him or her.
I believe there are as many good people who practice the Islamic faith as there are Christians and Jews. I also believe there are as many bad people who practice Christianity and Judaism as who practice Islam. I believe religion has caused most of the wars we've ever seen, and thus I remain skeptical about organized religion as a whole.
I believe President Obama is a good man who took on the toughest job in the world. I believe in the ideals he set forth during both campaigns. I believe that when he's changed his mind on issues (i.e. gay marriage), he's done so with much thought and research and introspection, and not simply due to the changing of the national tide. I believe our Congress is currently doing more harm than good, on both sides of the political aisle.
I believe in taking care of our neighbors, of the sick, of the poor. I don't mind paying more taxes if it means the people most in danger in our society can get a little more help when they need it.
I support Obamacare, as it's given many more people access to affordable health care.
I believe we have a responsibility to educate children.
I support charities that provide funding to children, to animals, to cancer and AIDS research.
I believe that, one day, humanity will win. We'll all come together, and it'll be like this video a friend just sent me.
I believe everyone has a right to believe what they think is correct. If you disagree with any of my beliefs, that's fine with me. If you comment with negativity and vitriol, I believe I will delete your comment.
And now I believe it's time for me to get back to work.