Saturday, July 16, 2005

Mainstream values

"My nominee will be a fair-minded individual who represents the mainstream of American law and American values." Thus spake someone's President, GWB, in today's radio address on his potential nominees for SCOTUS. I am simply dying to know: what, exactly, are mainstream values?

Whenever I want to know anything, I google it. What surprised me most was that there are a million pages referring to "mainstream values". But hardly any of them do more than referencing the phrase. Mainstream values are cited (yea, lauded) over and over, by both conservatives and liberals, without defining what goes into those values--and what doesn't.

Mainstream values always seems a code phrase, to me. For conservatives, we're talking god, guns, and gays (and don't forget those damn abortions). For liberals, there doesn't seem to be a neat and easy catch-phrase. Maybe that's part of our problem. We don't have easily focused on issues we're against--no clarity of anti.

I know this goes against the current political flow. Democrats are talking about how important it is to be active, not reactive. How we need to define ourselves positively, rather than define ourselves against what Republicans believe. But it seems easier to arouse folks on the anti-issues rather than the pro-issues. People are more likely to get active and excited when they feel something is going to be taken away from them.

I don't know. I'm a little fuzzy today. Really probably shouldn't roller ski for 45 minutes in the 90 degree heat. Ahem.

My point--and I do have one--is that GWB is positioning himself at the mainstream once again. And once again, someone has got to point out that his mainstream ain't my mainstream. Focusing on judicial philosophy alone, his mainstream gives me the heebee jeebees. Judges who want to overturn the democratic process give me the heebee jeebees. Judges who think there is some magic in turning back the clock to the day the Constitution was written so we can best interpret the Founders intention give me the heebee jeebees.

The concept of liberal judges being activist judges yet conservative judges who consistently overrule legislation passed by representative governments is nutso thinking. Reminds me of people who say they take the Bible literally, yet don't wash feet. Did you know that Jesus told us to wash people's feet more than any other exhortation?

It's all about picking and choosing--then copping to it. We all pick and choose. Let me admire you. Admit you do so. Admit you read the Bible and are a Christian but choose not to follow the admonitions against women preaching or avoiding pork. Admit you are a liberal but you have big problems with affirmative action. Admit you are a Jew but feel Israel is fucking up the Middle East.

Admit you pick and choose, that you are not consistent. Because none of us are. It's the human condition. Might as well embrace it.

Guess I wandered a bit from my original topic. But maybe not. Wish GWB could admit he and his party have harped on values ad nauseum yet doesn't have many of his own he actually adheres to. :-)

Until tomorrow,


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