Thursday, October 14, 2004

My Debate Question

President Bush, Senator Kerry. I would like to ask why you take a stand against same-sex marriage? Is it your religious conviction? For surely, there should be a separation of church and state. Is it because "that is the way it has always been?" For we all know that laws are in constant flux and "the way it has always been" is not necessarily "the way it should always be."

President Bush, you talk about freeing the people of this world while you bind your own citizens with oppressive restrictions, even on their right of who to love. President Bush, look me in the eye and tell me why some citizens of the United States can live wherever they want, but I have to make a conscious choice and decide that I cannot live in certain states within my own country because some state laws are so restrictive. Is this freedom? You say you will reduce taxes to all citizens, listing as an example the fact that you have reduced the marriage penalty because you want to encourage marriage. But you would rather encourage the multiple marriages of Brittany Spears or Michael Jackson before you would honor the commitment of a gay couple who has been together over 40 years. How is that a tax break for all? It certainly isn't a tax break for me. You say you oppose abortion and would seek other alternatives. Among them, you would encourage adoption, while in the same breath you would restrict adoptions for same-sex partners. You would provide tax breaks to families who have children, but you deny second-parent adoptions. You propose a constitutional amendment to verify your religious beliefs, the only amendment other than Prohibition (which failed) to restrict the rights of United States citizens rather than to grant them. How can you speak of freeing the world when you imprison your own people?

Senator Kerry, how can you stand there with a smug grin on your face while I rip into the President's policies, while your silence is almost as dangerous as his action? How can you pander to the voting public rather than speak up for what you know is right? You have yet to offer a reason for being against same-sex marriage. I believe it's either because you aren't against it, which makes your lack of conviction repulsive, or you are indeed against it, and are playing both sides of the coin. Again I ask, look me in the eye and tell ME, not the country, not the voting public, tell ME why I am a second-class citizen.

Which town hall debate do you think will let me read my question?

Monday, October 04, 2004

Inspiration

I can't really say why, but I haven't been inspired to write in a long time. Much has been happening, but I haven't been able to organize my thoughts into a cohesive column. I think about writing, and can't bring myself to do it. Perhaps in many ways it is because I'm not too sure how I feel about things... I just know things are happening.

I was hoping to just maybe write a quick summary of recent things today, and perhaps just the act of blogging might inspire me to get back into the routine of it again. So, here goes:

- Update on my Friday activities - I've been pretty good at keeping busy on Fridays, and the weekends have definitely seemed more full. This past Friday, however, I was trying to solve a problem at work and wound up being out until 12:30 in the morning. That did nothing to help relieve work stress. However, I've realized that despite a definite stress associated with work, the reason more often than not that I feel "I hate my job" has less to do with the job than the commute.

- Commuting - I'm grumpy. I'm tired. I'm miserable. I can't keep up with things in my life, the days go fast, and I'm groggy through them all. I thought it was the job, but it's the stop and go. Every day, I lose 3-4 hours behind the wheel of my car. 3-4 hours EVERY DAY. To think how much I could accomplish in a week, what more I could do. But I arrive to work more tired than I woke up. And I start to balance myself throughout the day, and think about things I can do when I get home, including going to the gym, which might give me more energy. But by the time I get home, I'm ready to zone out in front of the television and fall asleep. And it's getting worse every day. In Los Angeles, there is no light at the end of the tunnel. How can the city planners justify what will ultimately be a long enough commute to be able to eliminate sleep entirely?

- Moving - Everyone's moving... or so it feels. My best friends are leaving the country, and I can hardly say I blame them. Actually, it sounds like a really good move, and I am excited for them. They're moving to Canada and, after I saw "Bowling for Columbine", I think it's probably a good choice. I will miss them, and it's never easy saying goodbye. Of course, the parting was especially difficult since it came within only a week of my wife moving away. No, we're still together. She got a great job 3,000 miles away, and they didn't give her much notice. She's been gone 2 weeks and I miss her terribly. I will be joining her, but I have to finish my job commitments here, and we will be apart for a few more months. I am, frankly, nervous and anxious about the move. I've never lived anywhere but California before. And we're moving to Maryland where it does in fact snow. There will be adjustments, not the least of which is finding a new job. I'm concerned it won't come fast enough. On the other hand, I am very excited about the move. I am looking forward to trying something new, being in a new environment, getting out of the stagnant place I've been for a long time. Unfortunately, we haven't been financially stable enough to live off of one salary, and if I can't find a job in a short bit, I may have to come back to California and we'll have to live apart for another long stretch. I really don't want to do that. Unfortunately, it takes money to live. Anxious and excited, that about sums it up.

You'd think such a big change might be the first thing I'd write about, but I'm trying not to think about it too much. I think it is too overwhelming. Being apart, thinking about work, thinking about the physical move itself, it's a lot to take in.

- In the Meantime - Other things I've been doing to take my mind off of the stressful thought of driving to work and, of course, moving. For starters, if I didn't have enough stressors, I have taken on the task of throwing a baby shower for my sister-in-law. As much as I plan for work, I don't like to plan parties much... especially in my "down time." But it's my first niece or nephew and seeing as I'm moving a few weeks before his/her expected arrival, it's the least I can do.

I've also been occupying my time by paying more attention to the upcoming presidential election than any presidential election of my lifetime. For all the flack he's getting even among supporters, I actually like Kerry. I don't love him, but I like him. I don't care if he's the most charismatic person. I think he takes his job seriously, he's smart, he's focused, and he's a hell of a lot better than Bush. Maybe I'm easily swayed, but contrary to many of my friends' feelings about this, he actually inspires me. Maybe I've seen him make a few mistakes, miss a few good opportunities to take a stand on the issues and also put Bush in his place, but overall, I'm excited when I hear him speak. I hope he can make others feel that way... and soon!

Today I went rock scrambling. It's an activity I haven't participated in for a long while. I'm a bit out of shape, but we climbed to the top twice and I had a really great time. There were 3 friends I knew, and 5 new ones, and everyone was great. I even got a superficial crush on one of them. Don't think horribly of me... I just really miss my wife. I would never act on it, and I told my wife about it, and she told me she got a similar superficial crush on someone today too. We miss each other, and we hope to have a weekend together in the next couple of weeks. I hope so. I can't wait.