Wednesday, February 20, 2008

And while we wait...

... I thought now would be as good a time as any for one of my periodic clarifications regarding my feelings toward Republicans.

I do not hate everyone who votes Republican. I do not even hate all Republican politicians. However, I do pretty much despise everything the Republican party stands for. There are exceptions. There are a few platform points I find merely wrong-headed or mystifying, rather than repulsive. There's even a detail or two that, sure, I could see maybe getting behind, maybe, sometime. But mostly, yeah, I think it's all pretty heinous.

And it's pretty useless to make the argument that we're all the same under the skin and politics is meaningless. This is not a matter of taste - you're not arguing chocolate vs. vanilla. Neither is it a matter of heredity - it's not like I'm criticizing you because I happen to dislike, say, blue eyes. Who you vote for SHOULD reflect something real about what you believe in. And I reserve the right to make certain judgments about who you are based on what you believe in. What better basis for judgment could there possibly be?

So that's my answer. To my Republican fans. I have nothing against you. I'm sure you're all really fantastic people, especially to have the strength to wade through my passionate (read: possibly hide-bound) opinions, opinions you presumably don't share. Hats off. But that doesn't mean I don't think you're voting for bad, unsound, evil things, and that I do think that says something about who you are.

Sorry. What I think.


Blogger mamacita said...

Well put. I have this problem that I can't really like someone if I know his/her politics are really off. Most of the time I just cross my fingers and hope that my favorite bloggers DON'T mention politics, because I'm afraid I would have to stop liking them. For some reason, an awful lot of the bloggers I really like are Mormon, which is a little disturbing -- not that I care about their religion, so much, but Mormons as a group tend to be pretty politically conservative. And I just want to put my fingers in my ears and say "I'm not listening I'm not listening!"

So anyway, I am especially relieved to know that we are on the same side. Now I can like you entirely without reservation. I know you are so relieved.

7:58 AM  
Blogger tina said...

I love a woman with convictions, one who is not afraid to stand up and let 'er rip. Fearless is good!

In the scheme of things we all change our little corners of our world with passion and love and creativity. Youknowwho would say what a good thing that is!

9:28 AM  
Blogger Humble Abode said...

I wholeheartedly agree. It makes a lot more sense to base your judgment of a person on his or her beliefs than on something arbitrary. What they believe should indeed define who they are.

10:02 AM  
Blogger Bee said...

If I could just share some not entirely healed pain. I was living in Houston during the past presidential election . . . and it was like being in a waking nightmare. I had about three Democrat friends and we felt under siege. (We consoled ourselves by sharing George Bush jokes, and there were many, many good ones.) We just COULD NOT UNDERSTAND why people wanted More! Did they learn nothing between the years of 2000 and 2004? On the morning after the election, an otherwise kindly neighbor (who I happened to be carpooling with) had MANDATE stickers plastered all over his car. It still feels like a knife in my gut, and I really could never feel the same about this person.

Just to put this into context, my family splits evenly down the middle when it comes to political loyalties and my brother has actually done two tours in Iraq. He (my brother) is an intelligent, honorable person -- and he really did believe he was doing a good thing by bringing "democracy" to the Middle East. (He's a little bit guarded on what he believes now, to be honest.) Having lived outside of the U.S. for most of my adult life, and having read a better quality newspaper than the Houston Chronicle, I am just bemused and sickened (still!) that Bush and cronies were able to push so many of their dubious agendas. Obama, please take America back!

Julie, off-topic, but I've just read your book . . . really good stuff. I'm sorry that I missed you on your book tour.

3:33 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

Power to you, Julie!

wish my prose was as smart, sharp, and muscled as yours...

5:27 PM  
Blogger Kelly Nevins said...

Hi, Julie. I just read your book and then I read your blogs, and have to say that I'm a fan. Most of my friends think I'm weird for being a BtVS fan, have no idea what Firefly is, call me a bleeding heart liberal, have no love for food... I could go on. I feel like I found a sister! Wishing you luck in the movies- KJ

8:39 AM  
Blogger EB of SpiceDish said...

Amen sister!

1:32 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

There is certainly a difference between political conservatism and economic conservatism, which leads to the quandary for those of us in Illinois, who must declare a party for primary-voting purposes and can't list "Libertarian" and still vote. I think you should be allowed to live your lifestyle, whatever that is - gay, mormon, redneck, whatever - without government telling you what is "moral" or right or restricting your rights, so long as you are not harming your neighbors (or their rights to live their life). But I don't want higher taxes, I don't want bigger government, because bigger government necessarily takes a side and promotes its own agenda. Please, leave me with more of my own money, and stop supporting large businesses who can pay their own way, and get the troops out of Iraq, and stop prosecuting pot-smokers and gamblers and hookers. So how do I vote, eh? For Mayor Daley and his Democratic cronies here in Chicago so they can raise property taxes higher and buy new country club memberships for themselves, but support the Democrats? Or for the Republicans who believe we should send more troops to die pointlessly?

Why can't I have beliefs without having a party affiliation? Around here it's hard enough to find one or two that aren't total scumbags, and if I find one (like I believe Obama is a good find), I'll vote for whoever that is, regardless of party affiliation.

8:48 AM  
Blogger Yvo Sin said...

I think politics is a subject best not discussed over food or with those you aren't familiar...

2:33 PM  
Blogger Courtney said...

hi, new reader. just read the book and really enjoyed it.
it's so funny that you should post about this because i remember making comments about the undertones of your political opinions that ran through the book to my husband (he's a registered democrat, i'm a registered republican)...and he commented that i was brave for reading through to the end. i'm not sure whether he was implying that he would be unable to read the work of someone who disagreed with him, but that was the impression i got.
i agree with you on all counts of your post...we all need to vote for what we truly feel reflects us, or what is the damn point? besides, it's refreshing to hear opinions of someone who disagrees with you sometimes. not that and offhanded comment has ever changed my views about anything, but it's nice to know where people are coming from.
looking forward to more posts!

5:02 PM  
Blogger Keiler said...

I disagree. I don't think a person is what they think or what they believe. These things change and it's possible to love someone without agreeing with them. You're not saying republicans are unlovable, though. You're just saying they have reason to be judged. I'm democrat to the core, so I'm tempted to agree, but I also know what it's like to not judge those whose opinions conflict with mine - and it's more liberating. For example, I really loved your book and I'm vegetarian. I eat the same few things almost every day. We are totally different in our beliefs about food and our behavior involving food and it is a political issue, as well as a sensual one. Still, I loved your project. I was incredibly inspired and influenced by it. It could never have existed if you were more like me.

5:49 PM  
Blogger ona said...

Hi Julie - I just finished your book. I'm sad it's over, I was really enjoying my little time hiding from my life in your life which seemed so familiar. That doesn't make any sense, but it did. I feel like there is probably a better place to write a note to you since what i'm writing could hardly be considered a "comment" on your blog. I should stop now anyway since I'm typing with one, because my daughter is nursing, and also yelling at my kids because my son tickling my daughter's feet while she is nursing she is wiggling and laughing and biting me. Anyway, as an ex NYer/Brooklynite/LICer, now living in Philly with two kids, 3 and 1, and wonderful husband, who has no idea where her life is going but really wants it to go somewhere and doesn't know how to make it go and so escapes into cooking which really, despite the house being further destroyed by the kids, me being angry with myself for not being a better mother, many unwashed but well organized dishes, lack of showering, unfolded laundry, dirty laundry, dirty kitty litter, my "lists" of things i really don't want to do (like clean out the walk in closet which is no longer "walk in" but more like "climb in" and "throw in") getting longer and longer, makes happy, i really liked your book. Thanks

8:08 AM  
Blogger Gina said...

I'm a Republican living in NYC, so naturally I deal with my share of conservatism-hate on a daily basis. However, very rarely do I take any of it personally, bc what can you do really if someone doesn't share your beliefs - hold your breath until they 'come around'? No, you accept it, live peacefully and move on.

I was so sad to read the nasty things you said, especially bc I was excited to read your book and see the movie, which is currently filming outside of my office...I was surprised to see that an artist would alienate a portion (perhaps fraction in your eye) of their fan-base by insulting them.

Now, if I avoided a movie or book bc the creator was a Democrat or Liberal, etc., then I would be sitting home staring at my walls. I don't choose what I experience based on who it comes from - Republican, Liberal or Democrat. If it appeals to me, I'm all for it. Being free with your opinion is one thing, but blatantly putting down others (esp those who are your fans for crying out loud) is a whole other. Very sad.

1:31 PM  
Blogger Carol Dirner said...

I just bought a bumper sticker as a gift for a friend who is both a Republican and a Harry Potter fan: "Republicans for Voldemort"

That about says it all.

I am new as reader of your blog by the way. I am happily 2/3 through your book. I'm glad to see you're still writing your blog.

4:32 PM  
Blogger Joy Logan said...

So fun to become a "Bleader" with your blog! I must say I REALLY enjoyed your book more than many I have read. I was getting my car tuned up and was bookless at the time...your book was sitting there on a counter.I asked if it belonged to anyone,even asked the mechanics. I was so thrilled to find a book to read much less one I just enjoyed so so much,laughed out loud a few times in bed reading it.

7:36 PM  
Blogger Joy Logan said...

PS:Ick to this prez and Republicans. I can't understand how they can all be so heartless and oh so rich! My hubby is one and we fight about politics all the time,lol. He isn't rich enough to be a Rep I remind him. We are losing all respect in other countries with this man in office now.
PSS: Oh to work in your jammies!

7:42 PM  
Blogger well read hostess said...

I'm not a big fan of gushers, so I'll try to keep it brief. Loved your book and, after reading it and being kicked in the ass a few times by my brother, was inspired to start writing again. Thanks for that.

10:23 AM  
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Blogger Therese said...

Dear Julie,

I just finished your book and I enjoyed it very much. I'm an ardent fan of Julia Child and wasn't sure you would do justice to her memory. I give you TONS of credit for going through the whole project without much experience in at least having watched someone make mayonaise, which is not an easy thing to do. I also admire you for working all day and then cooking all night. When I get home, I can barely walk into the house much less start making French Cuisine. Of course, I'm also hitting 50 this year. So now that you're working out of your house and found your true calling as a writer, can you offer any advice to those of us who are great cooks, are funny, decent writer, tired of the same old job which I'm great at, but tired of doing. Hope to hear some comments from you.

7:18 AM  
Blogger frankie said...

You might want to watch the movie The Land of the Blind with Donald Sutherland. It is a weird movie until you get to the last part and its point is more clear. I reference it because those who are driven by power and/or money become changed by that pursuit. The lines are drawn according to the environment. It is like when the oldest child is a rebellious type and the second child is a goody-goody. We define ourselves by what is not taken. The parties define themselves in contrast to eachother to market to various segments of the population. It is the reality of the electorial process that it is dependent on the voters emotional and intellectual issues. Political issues are not black or white. The mental and emotional barriers to understanding and communication lead to various positions on the anger/violence continiuum which in the end bring what you are trying to avoid in the first place by being anti-war etc. I learn alot about myself and my views by lestening to those who disagree.:)

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