Brian and I were conversing the other day about the various definitions in the Democratic Party (notice “DemocraTIC) and what label suited me. I’ve never really bothered to define myself because I don’t normally like to be boxed in by labels so I had to really think about it.
Someone a while back used “Reagan Democrat” as an epithet and that got me angry. I voted for Reagan in my first vote. If voting my conscience as an 18 year old can be a slander well then OK. However my first vote for President certainly didn’t label me for the rest of my life. Too bad there are older more seasoned Democrats who label and slander even people in their own party for perceived slights.
So what am I? A Blue Dog? No because it’s a label for congressmen on the Hill who are more conservative than the party platform.
Am I a Yellow Dog like Horsedooty? No because I am not from the South and a Democrat who is voting democrat despite the rest of the conservative population.
Am I far left? No….all the evaluations and tests I’ve taken on the internet say I am center left. Before 2001, when asked what Party I affiliated with, I always said I was “An American” and voted for who I pleased. Still, I voted Democrat. I just didn’t want someone boxing me in. It wasn’t until 9/11 that I stood up and claimed my spot in the party.
So what AM I? Brian said I am a Progressive Christian. In 2004 after the Kerry Defeat, I had to check my arm pits for the stench of what a “Left-wing-so-called-Christian-who-wasn’t-really-a-Christian-because-I-voted-for-Kerry….A mouthful. But not quite right either. Because you see, I am a progressive Christian.
However, being a progressive Christian is not a political stance, it’s a way of life. What separates me from a Conservative Christian is my LACK of a Political stance, my interpretation of “What Would Jesus Do”, my inclusiveness of all cultures and religions into my life, and how I live my life in celebration of it.
I am a left of center Democrat. Since the 1990’s I have described myself as “A Bleeding Heart Liberal with Fiscal Conservative Tendencies.” My Republican friends usually sneer and my democratic friends have been known to snort!
I am for the NRA with limitations. As in full ban of assault rifles and semi automatic anything. I am for a Federal Law or 72 hour cooling off period with background checks before anyone can possess a gun. I am all for full on training and licensing of potential gun owners, just like drivers training and testing.
I am for full and relentless family planning. Beginning at the 7th grade and progressively until the 12 grade. I am against abortion, but not against a woman’s right to choose. Her body, her conscience. But I reckon that if there was good education and family planning we would have a huge decrease in abortion.
I do not mind at all, the Ten Commandments or any other moral code displayed on our courtroom walls or some holiday display on the City Hall Lawn. I feel it’s fair to allow any faith to display for their holidays too.
I want total reform of the Federal Budget and a Pay As You Go platform. But I also want to find a way to re-install project Head Start among others to help the poor lift themselves up out of the poor house. Last but not least a total repeal of the tax system with flat tax put into place. In my mind a flat tax would take care of all the inequalities of the present one and fund our new health system equally.
This is who Sheila Stone is, a left of center Democrat, who is also a New Democrat. This I recognized in Barack Obama. Moderation and sound reasoning, with a smattering of compassion and stewardship. Ready to be the President of all and not just some.