"... it still wouldn't change the fact that I don't own a car."
[political post warning]
We are three and a half months from the election and I'm already burnt out on all the bickering, name calling, questioning of patriotism, and the "gotchas" when someone says something that's easy to misinterpret or is "too honest" that passes for politics these days.
The biggest example of this, which has now reared its ugly head again, is the question of Barak Obama's religion - is he a Muslim. The New Yorker has a "satirical" (their word, not mine) cover story about Barak this and other absurd claims about him. The story has caused the "news" hungry media to once again go off the deep end about this story. We're seeing clips of Barak saying he's not a Muslim. We're hearing about polls where people think he's a Muslim. We're suffering through interviews of people on the street who think he is. We're reliving the Hillary Clinton interview where she says she "doesn't think" he's a Muslim.
There's one thing that seems to be missing from this whole thing - someone to stand up and say "Who Cares?"
Hillary said during her campaign that we should treat the election as a job interview. I agree with her on this. At the end of the day, the only question that need be asked is do I believe this person who I'm pulling the lever for is capable of leading this country in the right direction for the next four years. The rest doesn't matter.
The biggest reason is of course the fact that there is a small contingent of terrorists who have hijacked Islam and want to destroy The United States in its name. But as Jesus told the group looking to stone the adulteress, let he who is without sin cast the first stone. No religion is guilt free when it comes to crimes against humanity. Christianity (all forms), Judaism and Islam all have checkered pasts (and that's putting it mildly).
Unfortunately, there is a segment of the population that doesn't seem to be able to separate Islam from terrorism. Or as Toby put it famously in a West Wing episode, "I don't remember having to explain to Italians that our problem wasn't with them but with Mussolini." Our problem isn't with Islam or Muslims. It's with terrorists. Obama (or anyone else for that matter) being a Muslim shouldn't make a difference. Them wanting to kill me is a problem irrespective of religion.
I would really like to see someone in the media brave enough to stand up and ask the basic question - "What difference does it make if he's a Muslim?"
I would love to see Obama stand up and say, "I'm not a Muslim, I'm a Christian. But enough about my personal life, let's talk about <insert real topic here>."
I would love to see McCain stand up and say, "I don't care if my opponent is a Muslim because it doesn't matter. What does matter is his <insert view that McCain disagrees with here>."
And what I'd really love to see from here forward is a debate on the issues.
But, alas, I'm not holding out much hope.