His initials spell WAR. A wonderful “online magazine in the reality-based community” called Pam’s House Blend posted about Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s new Attorney General pick. Besides his other right wing credentials, he’s publicly used the words “immoral,” “perversion” and “degenerates” in reference to the queer community. Scary thing is, I’ll bet his mother really is proud. Unless she’s a dyke…

wren-constance-talmadgeAs a “degenerate” on so many different levels, I’m often dismayed at the gulf that seems to divide the left and the right. But it seems that different playbooks, different assumptions drive each. Cultural liberals want to let folks be, we’re comfortable with a range of behaviors, as long as our own personal choice is intact. We can allow that contradictory ideas can both be true and that the different ways our neighbors live are enriching for our children. Cultural conservatives like structure and having things defined in absolutes. I guess then you don’t have to wonder if you’re right or if ideas need updating. They’re absolute. The Bible is a favorite source for absolutes. Strangely, my liberal Christian friends have the same book with the same words in the same order. But their book says very different things…

rainbow-colors-very-appealing-use-one-its-okayOn facebook, fundamentalists and liberal activists play this out. After the Pope’s remarks that condom distribution only makes the AIDS epidemic in Africa worse, one woman wrote about handing out condoms on her campus. A “friend” shot back that, if everyone would just follow God’s law there would be no homosexuality. After a few exchanges it turns out that his logic was this: Homosexuality may or may not be hardwired for some people. But since “God’s law” is no sex before marriage, and gays can’t marry, well then no homosexuality…

Problem with his plan is, I follow “the goddess’ law.” Sex is sacred…and our gulf remains.

As long as we keep talking past each other over the gulf, every political battle just feels like another in a constant barrage of skirmishes, some lost, some won on a battlefield where the majority rules. I support that fight, but I feel empty that virtually everybody goes home with the same ideas they came with.

My mom, Peg FinnieMy mother, left (literally), is a political science major, a political animal. I have always been called to activism, but as a marcher, not a lobbyist or pundit. I am not a political animal, probably because I’m too emotional. Someone starts arguing me down and I just want to hug them or defect to a warmer climate. My vehicle for change has always been personal action, living by example, networking to transmit my ideas and culture, witnessing for justice and my beliefs as situations arise.

To me, not going shopping is a radical act of social justice.

So is there a way to bring the country closer together? (Note to the Invisible Forces of the Universe: I’m not asking for another 9/11 or Katrina here. I’m asking people what people can do. Butt out. We’ll handle this.)

A friend who’s a sex therapist brought SAR to my attention: Sexual Attitude Reassessment. I’m interested in this sort of thing on a grassroots or cultural level. But I’ll probably start by trying it within Intentional Communities, those wonderful laboratories of cultural change. Play, play, play!

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