I'm a Yellow-Dog-Democrat, as liberal as the day is long, and all my hunting buddies are Tea Party Republicans. We've been friends for over 20 years, love to hang out and tell whoppers, and we talk politics, religion, abortion, gun control, immigration and such all the time. I don't believe everything I hear on MSNBC and they don't believe everything they hear on Fox News. Here's the stuff we agree on: 1) Nobody thinks an abortion is a life-enriching experience. Even when it's to save the life of the mother it's still a tragedy, but sometimes God gives you a choice between a tragedy and a disaster and you have to do the best you can. 2) If you want to protect the institution of marriage do something about the divorce rate. If two gay people can get married and stay married for 50 years, they are a better example to our children than all the "straight" people who can't keep it in their britches. 3) Teachers shouldn't teach religion and preachers shouldn't teach geometry. 4) Weed doesn't kill teenagers. Alcohol kills teenagers. If you're under 21, both are illegal drugs. 5) Obamacare = Obama + care. The subliminal message is "Obama Cares About You!" What were Republican strategists thinking? No wonder the Democrats trademarked the nickname. 6) Three days in a teriyaki-ginger marinade and slow cooking over a natural charcoal grill with dry mesquite chips makes for some very tasty deer tenderloin. 7) We are Americans, through and through. If you can't take criticism then don't talk to us. We'll fight amongst ourselves just for the fun of it, but if you threaten our house then you'll find out real quick there's only one party in this country, and that's the American party.
If you want to improve education in Tennessee than break down and pay the teachers. You don't have to pay them a lot, just what you would pay a cut-rate babysitter. Let's see...an average of 100 students for an hour and a half each day...really cheap rate of $5 per student per hour...that's $750 a day...work 20 days per month...$15,000 per month...9-month contract...that's $135,000 per year. If we just pay our teachers at babysitter rates then educators from around the globe would be fighting to work in our state and soon we would have the best educational system in the nation, if not in the world. I know you can't solve every problem by throwing money at it, but shouldn't we try it at least once? I mean, the average dentist makes over $100k per year, and they just work on teeth. If we care that much about our teeth, shouldn't we care at least that much about our kids?
Jesus was pretty clear about condemning other's sins when he said, "Get the log out of your own eye before you get the speck out of someone else's eye." It seems to me that if gay people can get married and stay married they are providing a better example for our young people than the 50% of straight people who get married and divorced and married and divorced and....... If we really want to protect the institution of marriage, maybe we should start with the real threat to marriage today: the skyrocketing divorce rate. I get a little disgusted to hear Christians talk about marriage as if it is all about sex. Anybody who's been successfully married knows better. I've been married to the same woman for over 27 years, and I intend to be with her long after our bones are too brittle to stand contact. Oh, sure, I don't really like seeing gay couples "locked up" in public, but I don't want to see anybody's grandparents "locked up" in public for the same reason. It's all about decency, not morality, and some of the comments I hear about gay people are so indecent it makes me sad. We are thrown into this world on the whim of a handful of chromosomes and a roll of the dice. It's insane to take stuff that we can't control and make it the most important part of our lives. Sometimes I feel like the whole world is insane. Okay, that was a rant, but I feel better now.
Look, I'm a Christian, a social liberal, a fiscal conservative, and an enthusiastic hunter with a sportsmans's license who doesn't want the kid next door playing with a 50-cal. I don't believe that God created the world just so he could hang out in a garden with a couple of naked vegetarians and a talking snake (which Genesis does NOT say was the Devil...read it some time). Very few of my Christian brother and sisters share my beliefs, but I still express them openly and we still love each other and hold each other up when times get tough. I'm a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, and I follow his example by rejecting a lot of silly ancient Jewish beliefs. What I'm trying to say is this: don't believe everything that the minority of loud-mouth Christian idiots say about the rest of us. We're not all cut from the same cloth. We have minds, we use them, and most of us are smart enough to form our own opinions. As for the rest, well, give them time. They'll either come around or they won't, and soon enough we'll KNOW. Life is too short to go around worrying about what other people believe.