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Posted: Sep. 8, 2002
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Question of the Week: 14 - 11/6/2000
The Unresolved US Election
Did YOU vote? Which candidate did you vote for? How do you feel about the political wrangling going on right now in Florida? Will/Should either candidate concede for the good of the country-or should either/both fight it out until we all scream for mercy? How do you think either candidate, if declared the winner, will be able to bring the country together given the inference that the election results now point to an America that is almost equally divided into one camp or the other? And the BIG question-What, if any, impact will the final results have on the Pagan communities?
| Reponses: There are 263 responses posted to this question.
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| Well, Shoot. I Hate To Do This Because A) I'm Sure I'm... ||Nov 12th. at 2:40:56 pm UTC|
|Cat (Asheville, North Carolina US) ||Age: 33 |
Well, shoot. I hate to do this because a) I'm sure I'm probably one of dozens or hundreds who will respond with outrage and b)folks who write hostile feedback on other folks' boards no doubt listen to no one, but...I guess it needs doing. This is a response to what appears, as of 2:23 Sunday afternoon, EST, November 12, by Kelly Steed, declaring that she (or he) voted for Bush and is "damn proud of it". Steed disses a number of Wiccan beliefs and perpetuates a number of stereoptypes in the process. I'm sure most pagans know already what I'm going to say, but just in case Steed is actually looking for a response (unlikely, I know), here it is.
1) Yes, some of us read history. Yes, neo-Wicca as we know it today is largely derived from Gardnerian practice (somewhat earlier than you claim, however.) I also have little patience with the sometimes relentless Angliphilism of some pagans and Wiccans. But in light of the fact that neo-pagans of all sorts are associated (equally relentlessly) with medieval and colonial "witches" *by many Christians*, it isn't too unreasonable to be afraid that what happened to them can happen to us. The (relatively little) we know about medieval and colonial "witchcraft" suggests that older paganism and neopaganism have certain common traits, one of which is their treatment by devout Christians. The (relatively much) that we know about what happens to neo-pagans now who are "out of the broom closet" suggests that we are justified in worrying about persecution of our own--and not just a dirty look or some name-calling. I know that in my job I do not feel safe discussing my religion.
2) "Most" Wiccans do not practice nude, to the best of my knowledge and belief; in fact, I have never met any who did. Even if a given group believed that nudity was the way to go, I doubt that they could do it year-round outdoors without contracting frostbite, JAG's pretty pictures to the contrary. And if they did, how many rapists would assail whole covens of nude women and men, who, contrary to your assertions, are a large part of Wicca? To hang institutional intolerance on one not-very-prevalent custom and a gender stereotype says more about your ignorance of history and of Wiccan custom than about any expressed at Witchvox.
3) I doubt there's room in this forum to discuss the assumptions which underlie your beliefs that
a) the world is full of people dying to "take us over" (just who were you thinking of, anyway?);
b) the only way to freedom is a strong military (which, historically, we have used less for defending personal freedoms than for protecting our perceived economic interests--or what did you think the Gulf War was? WWII was our last war for freedom; reduced access to oil would be a profound inconvenience, but the only real "freedom" it would affect is our erroneous concept that we have a God-given "right" to gas-guzzling private vehicles without regulation);
c)that George W. Bush's record expresses a concern for freedom in general (before you come critiquing our history, you should read *his* record, including how he acquired the land for his professional sport's team's stadium at taxpayer expense.) Answering these fully would require a book. However, these points and others suggest that your own grasp of history is less firm than your feeling of general outrage against neo-pagans and witches. One question: why? What is it we do that's got you so upset? Voted for Gore? I hate to tell you, Steed, but the freedom to vote the way we want IS a constitutional freedom. Coming onto this board screaming about your choice isn't going to change that, praise be.
Like I said, I've never responded to another response this way, never felt I had to, hope I never have to again, and suspect that others have beaten me to it. But it seems to need doing. Sorry, everyone. Steed's probably long gone flaming other boards anyway.
| I Voted For Bush Because I Fear Al Gores Plan To Disarm... ||Nov 12th. at 3:08:02 pm UTC|
|Gerald (Richmond , Virginia US) ||Age: 36 |
I voted for Bush because I fear Al Gores plan to disarm the honest gun owning Americans.
The Clinton Administration has lied about crime in America and will not give straight answers to the Public.I do not want 4 more years of lies. Fear the Goverment that fears Your guns.
Justice Department Withholds Information Needed for Judging Clinton Administration Enforcement Effort Syracuse, October 4 -- The Justice Department is denying news organizations, public interest groups and the general public access to comprehensive information about how the Clinton Administration has enforced the nationŐs laws.
Check out this link for more info from Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) http://trac.syr.edu/data/jus/eousaFOIA.html
FICTION: Al Gore recently claimed that his mother-in-law pays more than $100.00 for the arthritis medicine Lodine; and he claims that his dog takes the same medicine for $37.00, claiming 'This is wrong!'
FACT: Gore's aides were quick to apologize for Gore's lie, saying the information was from a Democratic study. Washington newspapers also reported that Al Gore wasn't even sure his mother-in-law was taking any medication and wasn't even sure she had arthritis. And, he doesn't know anything about his dog's 'arthritis'.
FICTION: Al Gore said his father, a senator, was a champion of civil rights during the 1960's.
FACT: Gore's father voted against the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964 and was a racist who was fond of using the 'N' word.
FICTION: Al Gore said that his sister was the very first person to join the Peace Corps.
FACT: By the time Gore's sister joined the Peace Corps, there were already over 100 members.
FICTION: The same sister died of lung cancer years later and Gore vowed to never accept tobacco money as campaign contributions.
FACT: Just four years later, while campaigning for office, Gore spoke to the tobacco industry and said he was one of them because 'I've planted it, raised it, cut it, and dried it.' He raised over $100, 000 in 'reported' contributions.
FICTION: While running for office, Gore's campaign literature claimed he was a 'Brilliant Student'.
FACT: Washington newspapers said he barely passed Harvard and consistently earned D's and C's.
FICTION: Gore claims an extensive knowledge of law as a result of his extensive study at law school.
FACT: Al Gore dropped out of law school.
FICTION: Gore claimed that his knowledge of God and spirituality came to complete fruition while 'finishing' divinity school.
FACT: Al Gore dropped out of divinity school.
FICTION: Al Gore claimed responsibility for inventing the Internet in the 1990's.
FACT : Shocked scientists were quick to speak out, explaining that the Internet had been in widespread use by government and educational institutions since the early 1970's.
FICTION: Al Gore claimed the book 'Love Story' was based on his life and Tipper's.
FACT: Author Erich Segal called a press conference to deny his claim. (Couldn't he at least lie about a love story where his sweetheart doesn't die?'
FICTION : Gore claimed that as a reporter for a Nashville newspaper, his stories led to the arrests of numerous corrupt criminals.
FACT: He later apologized for his claim and actually said it was untrue (Also known as lying).
FICTION: Gore claims to increase diversity in the staff that follows him daily, especially among blacks.
FACT: Black members of the Secret Service are suing because they claim they are not being promoted to positions guarding the Vice-President.
FICTION: Al Gore said he was the first to discover the Love Canal nuclear accident.
FACT: The incident was already discovered, being investigated, and covered widely in the press for many months before Gore was aware of it.
FICTION: Gore said just recently that if elected president, he would put harsh sanctions on the sleazy producers of Hollywood's extreme sex and violence.
FACT: Just six days later, Gore attended a fundraiser by Hollywood producers and radical gay activists where he told them that he would only pretend to 'nudge them' if elected. He raised over $4 million.
FICTION: Al Gore said he built his Tennessee home with his bare hands.
FACT : Totally false!
FICTION: Al Gore says parents should not have a choice between private and public schools because public schools are far better.
FACT : Al Gore attended private school and he has sent his children to private schools.
FICTION: Al Gore remembers his mother lulling him to sleep as a baby by singing the popular ditty, 'Wear The Union Label'.
FACT: The popular ditty was created by the unions when Gore was 27 years old.
FICTION: Al Gore claimed to co-sponsor the McCain-Feingold Campaign Reform Act.
FACT: The Act was not sponsored until he had been out of office for over a year.
FICTION: Al Gore claims to be instrumental in keeping gas prices low.
FACT: Gore has voted on numerous occasions to raise the tax on gasoline. In his book 'Earth In The Balance' Gore claims that the nation's Number One enemy is the internal combustion engine. (That's the motor in your vehicle that gets you to work and takes your kids to school)
FICTION: Gore pretends to champion the rights of poor women to be tested regularly for breast cancer with the most modern technology.
FACT: While giving a speech on the subject in September, Gore didn't know what a mammogram was.
FICTION: AL Gore promised Florida's senior citizens that they would finally have low-cost drugs with no interference from government.
FACT: Gore's plan calls for the creation of a huge federal agency that would tell you which doctor you are allowed to see in order to get the 'special rates'.
FACT: Al Gore told NBC's Lisa Meyers that he had never told a lie. When Meyers pressed harder, 'You've never told a lie?!' Gore said, 'Not that I know of.'
| I Moved From Tennessee To Louisiana In July And Have Been Mostly... ||Nov 12th. at 3:08:37 pm UTC|
|Dana (Iota, Louisiana US) ||Age: 26 - Email |
I moved from Tennessee to Louisiana in July and have been mostly broke since that time, also going through some major inertia (those of you who have ever been depressed know what I'm talking about) and just never "got around" to registering to vote, for the first time since 1992. This was the first Presidential election I've missed since I was old enough to cast a ballot.
And you know, I'm angry. I labored under the delusion for so long that while it certainly felt good to vote for my favored candidate, my vote for President really didn't matter because the Electoral College ultimately decides. And I couldn't have been more wrong. The events in Florida prove that even the Electoral College doesn't jump until the voters say "how high." I'd be angry over this situation even if there was a good chance Al Gore will win when the absentee votes are tallied. We shouldn't have had to wait this long to find out who our next President will be. Furthermore, things shouldn't have come to such a pretty pass in our partisan political system that the two major candidates are so much alike that neither had a real lead over the other.
If Ralph Nader had gotten his five percent of the popular vote, I'd dismiss the Gore/Bush battle as just another example of corrupt Republicrat politics. Unfortunately this did not happen, so we get to look forward to another round of childish tantrum-throwing in 2004. In the meantime, I really feel Bush will win, so we get to revisit the Reagan/Bush years all over again. Yee-haw.
Meanwhile, can we all please come to our senses? Bush wouldn't even be an issue if the Democrats had become the majority party in Congress again. He could nominate all the Supreme Court candidates he wanted and he'd have to contend with whether Congress would approve them. This is why we do not have a Justice Robert Bork on the SC now. So it's high time we quit ignoring politics until the Presidential election rolls around... we have to pay attention EVERY election year... local, state, and Congressional candidates have a LOT more effect on our lives than the President does, and we need to *vote accordingly*!
And as for me, I'll never again let my registration lapse. And those of you who want to register and didn't before, check out www.rockthevote.org.
| I Feel That This Entire Election Has Been A Learning Experience For... ||Nov 12th. at 3:08:53 pm UTC|
|Gray (Pleasanton, California US) ||Age: 19 |
I feel that this entire election has been a learning experience for the American public as a whole. It's already very clear that we are a rather uniformly divided nation, and I would expect that pagan population to reflect the rest of America. I don't think that either candidate will have a good time in office, no matter who gets elected. It will be a pretty choppy four years for the country, so it's hard to say how the outcome of the recount, and the subsequent naming of the president-elect, will impact the pagan community. This is a wait-and-see situation.
On a whole, I think it would be hard for Bush to completely mess things up. He has some rather nasty opinions, but, he will be hard pressed to get support from congress to do something that could possibly lower morale in the army, and/or piss off a lot of people in the civilian population. There are many other areas, such as the Supreme Court, which could be VASTLY effected by his election as president, and it is that fact that worries me the most. His stance on religion is worrisome, but the next president can undo the laws he passes, while a conservative Supreme Court will be seated for a long time to come.
That's why I voted for Al. I don't agree with Bush at all, nor do I think the man is qualified to run the country. Gore has more experience, but I don't think he's the best choice, far from it. But he's "safer". I did not vote Green, because I don't agree with everything Nader says either.
The next man in office will have a hard time uniting the country. Whoever it ends up being, I say to them "good luck". They're going to need it.
| No, Unfortunaltely I Moved Before The Elections And Even Though I Sent... ||Nov 12th. at 3:10:58 pm UTC|
|Mouse (Shelton, Washington US) ||Age: 56 - Email |
No, Unfortunaltely I moved before the elections and even though I sent in a change of address for voting it did not go through and I wasn't allowed to vote. If I had it would have been the straight Libertarian Party. I do not see a lot of difference between the 2 primary parties that are forced down our throats. People forget that there are other parties out there. Start with the grass roots and get some of those people elected at a local level and build up the 3rd party of your choice. It angered me that after the aborted Pero attempt last time, there was a measure (luckily defeated) in Congress to legally limit our choices to two parties. It is a power play on the behalf of those entrenced in office. Doesn't it bother people that most of the time they are voting for the lesser of two evils? I prefer to try to promote the party and/or people of my choice by voting for people I believe in.
| Yes,i Voted, For The Green Party. Reason Being Is I Don't... ||Nov 12th. at 3:22:37 pm UTC|
|Dara (Cordova, Alaska US) ||Age: 45 - Email |
Yes, I voted, for the Green Party. Reason being is I don't trust or "like" Bush or Gore. Neither one of thes persons really care about this country only themselves and their pockets. My state voted for Bush mainly because he wants to build up uor miltary and this we need, BUT, we don't want him or anyone else to mess up our state either. The powers that be have turned thier greedy eyes on Alaska for the oil, timber, and wildlife. The Feds have tried to regulate the fishermen and women to death just like they did to the shimpers in south. I know because I used to live there. Alot of people are losing their livihood because of our goverment.
As for Pagans, I worship when and where I want. I did so in Alabama and I do so here. And yes, I am a pagan have been for awhile. And unless the Constitution is changed(unlikly) pagans and may worship as they wish, and I would hope, with concertation for others who do not believe the way we do. Otherwise we are no better than Jesus freaks who condem others who do not agree with them. Be Blessed, be in peace, remember, we ARE here and we will be heard. Just remember, no matter who wins, we the people will lose if we don't wake up and work in our cities, towns and villages. Prehaps this is the time when we can (I wish) really clean house because there are alot of folks who are ready to revolt. If you think that can't happen then you need to read your history books again.
| Yes I Exersized My Futility,i Voted!not That The Menu Was... ||Nov 12th. at 3:23:29 pm UTC|
|Arwynn Evenstar (olympia) ||Age: 48 - Email |
Yes I exersized my futility, I voted!Not that the menu was that enticing!My stance was BETTER THE EVIL WE KNOW OF....!Bush looks like a maniac Gore brings to mind cloning experiments in Scotland and Nader was only a distraction.Soo with all this in mind I voted for Gore? Havent figured out why yet. At least we can still go to the polls even if no one can remember how to count!!! I think that a lot of mundane people are going to get a rude awakeing very shortly.Talk about schoolyard brawls...just look at the way gore andbush are handleing this snafu.Makes you feel safe dosent it?
| Yes Indeedy -- I Voted -- For Gore. And One Would Hope That Since... ||Nov 12th. at 3:32:22 pm UTC|
|diana rhode (amherst, Virginia US) ||Age: 68 - Email |
yes indeedy -- i voted -- for gore. and one would hope that since wicca has been recognized as a bona fide 'religion' in these united states w/all attendant perks and privileges, that it would not really matter who wins the election. however, i recognize that there are those that will follow whatever a president does/approves/disapproves of -- down to what sort of dog to get -- which might bode heavy for wicca were the shrub to be our next president.
no, i don't think either candidate should concede.
as far as the mess-up in florida -- why, f'pete's sake, are there ballots that allow for the appearance of having voted twice, thereby cancelling one's vote.
shouldn't we have a bit of standardization of ballot-casting methods. one reporter from fla. explained that if one filled in the box/circle/place with red ink, it would not 'read' and not be counted. why cannot black-inked pens --if that's what is required -- be handed to voters as they prepare to cast their ballots.
interesting that the bush, alto' he had passed into law in texas a hand-count provision in the event of close elections, is now screaming 'foul' over a hand-count in fla. hmmmmmmm. also, the big puzzle is why were not those that 'messed up' refused a fresh ballot even tho' that is provided for by law in florida. again -- hmmmmmmmmmm. smelly, what.
| I Voted For Harry Browne, The Libertarian Candidate. I Believe That Both... ||Nov 12th. at 4:01:47 pm UTC|
|Zorya (Dayton, Ohio US) ||Age: 46 - Email |
I voted for Harry Browne, the Libertarian candidate. I believe that both Bush and Gore are big government/big spenders and as such are in conflict with my basic political beliefs. I think that the political wrangling going on in Florida is counterproductive and will only increased hostilities between the various major factions in the US. My personal opinion is that the absentee ballots from military members stationed outside of Florida will go heavily for Bush, primarily because of the deep level of anger and hostility that a large number of military personnel have for Mr Clinton and anything associated with his administration. That being said, I do not feel that either candidate should concede until the the absentee ballots are tallied.
On the question as to whether either candidate can bring the country together - it depends on the factions. If one or both continue to cast the other as evil there will be no progress.
The influence on the Pagan community will most likely be whatever the rest of the country is experiencing. I do not forsee a "witch hunt" against the pagan community.
| I Didn't Vote...i Sat At Home Watching Everyone Fight At The... ||Nov 12th. at 4:21:26 pm UTC|
|Matt DeRuilley (Detroit, Michigan US) ||Age: 23 |
I didn't vote...I sat at home watching everyone fight at the polls over who is more attractive. Besides it doesn't matter who is in office, the world is changeing whether they like it or not. The Goddess cannot be stopped now.
I think it'll be funny watching Bush though, he'll freak when he learns "Oh my God THOSE people have a legal right to worship OTHER Gods!!?!" Lol.
Just my thoughts.
| I Also Have To Respond To Kelly Stead's Response. I Am One... ||Nov 12th. at 4:48:56 pm UTC|
|SpiritFlame (Phila, Pennsylvania US) ||Age: 28 |
I also have to respond to Kelly Stead's response. I am one of those "no true Pagans" that celebrate the Christian holidays with their families and raise their children in the church. I don't hold a grudge against the Christian church. I left my Christian background simply because I couldn't relate to it. I found a home in Wicca. Yes, I know the history of the Burning Times. But the Christians I know were not there during the Burning Times. They didn't light the stakes, they didn't hang or torture anyone. How can we expect to dismantle ancient stereotypes and bridge the gap between Christians and Pagans if we refuse to accept them as well? We can't flame them and reject them and then get angry when they persecute us!
Choosing to celebrate holidays with my family and choosing to raise my children in a caring church community is my business. Not all Christian churches breed hatred and intolerance of other faiths. Our stereotypes of Christians are as bad as their stereotypes of us. IT IS UP TO THE INDIVIDUAL. It harms none, and when my children are old enough, they will decide for themselves -- just like I did. Don't tell another parent how to raise his/her child.
Being Wiccan is a very personal decision for me (Dianic Wiccan), and I believe strongly that it is up to each parent how s/he raises their child. No one can tell me what faith my child should be. Part of being Pagan means being free. Free to choose our own lives, make our own decisions. If we then judge other Pagans for how AND WHAT and WITH WHOM they choose to celebrate on a given holiday, we are no better. We may as well be the religious intolerants who call us Satanists. Besides, who is to say who is right and who is wrong in the way one worships? No one holds the patent on the truth. We are each on our own spiritual journey.
Flaming other Wiccans and Pagans who don't agree with you will not do anyone any good. In fact, I am not including my e-mail address with this because I don't want to get flamed for this response. I don't usually speak out this strongly about things, but I don't like being attacked, even generically, for what is strictly my personal business. There is enough fighting in this world, and enough religious intolerance in this nation. Let's not add to the hatred.
| I Feel I Must Speak Up To Debunk The Vicious Rumor Sheet... ||Nov 12th. at 5:21:54 pm UTC|
|Lisa/ChaosMoth (Mountain View, California US) ||Age: 16 - Email |
I feel I must speak up to debunk the vicious rumor sheet that someone posted here, because it's one of those pieces of urban legendry that gets passed around by email to cause discontent. (One of the people on this forum, for example, voted for Bush(!) because he'd heard on a hate-site that Gore(!!) was anti-gay.)
A few of those 'facts' are true, and most of them are exaggerated or false.
Check out the info here:
This also contains the original document, if you haven't read it. Maybe if more people hadn't read it, the election wouldn't be stalled right now.
Snopes is a site devoted to finding the truth or falsehood in urban legends and email lore, and generally takes a politically neutral standpoint.
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