Monday, June 9, 2008

10 lessons the Presidential primaries have taught our children

The recent 2008 Presidential primaries have taught Americans a lot about ourselves.

Without a doubt, glass ceilings have been shattered, long-held prejudices have been re-examined and forced into the light, and a new vision of opportunity has unfolded for our children.

Yet, sadly, not all of the lessons provided by both parties in recent months have been positive ones. I'm disheartened, disappointed and downright disgusted with the behaviors and values that America's supposed "best and brightest" are teaching our children by example:
  1. Style is much more important than substance.

  2. Winning is more important than being honest or playing fair. In fact, winning is more important than anything.

  3. If the rules aren't working in your favor, change them.

  4. If you repeat a lie often enough, people will start to believe it.

  5. Chose your words very carefully, the technical definition of those words means more than the spirit of them.

  6. Appearance is everything.

  7. Overcome feelings of being victimized by playing the victim card.

  8. Rebut policy differences with personal attacks.

  9. If someone hits you, hit back. Harder.

  10. It doesn't matter what you say today... you can always deny it tomorrow.

I grew up in a family of staunch Democrats, but much to their dismay, I became a Republican ten years ago. Before November, I will change my affiliation again - this time to "Independent." But before I do, I want to openly apologize to Independents.

I used to think that being an Independent was a sign of intellectual laziness, that the people who made that choice just weren't interested enough in the issues to take a stand. I've thought long and hard about the issues and I care very deeply. But I've also thought long and hard about each of the Presidential candidates, both current and former. I never thought I'd say it, but at least for this campaign cycle, I've come to think that being Independent means sadly choosing "none of the above."