Who I am not

This is something I've been meaning to say for a while - since the presidential campaign last year. I have even been thinking of writing a book about it. The election of Donald Trump, and now the violence in Charlottesville, are making a lot of people very uncomfortable, to say the least. 

I feel I need to say something because for many years I was associated with "the right" (however defined; everything from libertarian to classical liberal to more-or-less conservative). Seeing events unfold in Virginia, and articles like this, I have this to say: 

If these people are on the right, then I'm not. More generally, if Donald Trump is considered to be on the right, then I'm not there either. I find those people and the opinions they hold repugnant (yes, including the president), as much as I dislike Marxists and other groups considered "far-left". 

I am not a Christian. I'm not religious at all. To paraphrase Mark Twain, I don't care what god(s) people worship, provided their dog is the better for it. Other people, too. I believe in the dignity of human beings, and I want to rush to the defence of anyone targeted by thugs - from the right or from the left. I am very much gay-friendly and I couldn't care less which bathroom people use. 

My family life is what you'd consider old-fashioned by choice (despite a terrible experience as a child of a very traditional marriage that included repeated beatings until I was big enough to hit back, at which point they magically stopped), and it's certainly not something I need to impose on others. I don't care what arrangements people have, provided they remember that kids never asked to be here and that their needs matter more than our own - at least for a while. 

I wish no woman felt the need to end a life growing inside her. But I wouldn't put her in jail for it; for I believe the experience is punishment enough. 

Identity politics is a poison that can affect anyone. I know. I was once in its grip. If you don't watch out, it can seep into your soul and carbonize the soft and precious bits you have inside. 

I don't want to be put in a box. I don't want to be on the left, and I don't want to be on the right. With a little water and sunlight, I can grow wherever I choose and hopefully, one day, recover my soft bits. 

Beautiful New England

Luminous church