You can imagine my surprise on Sunday morning (Nov. 9) while reading the editorial page, that I found myself in agreement with — Cal Thomas! (“R.I.P. for the Religious Right”)

Now, before all of my right-wing Republican friends start thinking I’ve finally converted to the “dark side,” rest assured, I haven’t.

My opinions and views of the world couldn’t be more polar opposites from Cal’s or the right wingers, but I see where Cal finally, in general, gets it about the ways of the left and the religious right. He said, and I quote:

“Too many conservative Evangelicals have put too much faith in the power of government to transform culture. The futility in such misplaced faith can be demonstrated by asking these activists a simple question: Does the secular left, when it holds power, persuade conservatives to live by their standards? Of course they do not. Why then, would conservative Evangelicals expect people who do not share their worldview and view of God to accept their beliefs when they control government?”

That, in a nutshell, is why I vote Democratic the vast majority of the time. The right wants to control everyone’s lives, not just their own, by imposing their beliefs on others.

No one is for abortion, but I think if a woman wants to have one or needs one she should have that right, regardless of John McCain’s insensitivity during the one debate with his air quotes about the “health of the mother.”

If you don’t like gay marriage, don’t have one. Couldn’t be simpler.

If you’re a pharmacist that doesn’t want to dispense prescribed birth control pills to a woman based upon your religious beliefs, either find a new job, or start asking all men coming in with prescriptions for Viagra for a valid marriage license, because there’s only one use for Viagra, unlike birth control pills, and if having sex out of wedlock is against your religion as well, you better treat everybody the same. I just bet you would.

That’s the bottom line — if you’re against abortion, gay marriage, etc., and laws are passed allowing these things, how exactly does it affect your lives? Are you any worse off because of it? The answer quite simply is no, you’re not.

If on the other hand laws are passed banning abortion, gay marriage, etc., you then get your way, but how many people will suffer because of your narrow minded view of the world?

How many mothers or sisters or daughters might die because they have a medical need for the abortion and they can’t have one?

How many loving gay couples can’t marry because of your views? How many women might end up with an unwanted pregnancy or be denied needed hormone treatments all because you think it’s wrong to dispense birth control medications?

No one has the right to make these kinds of decisions for others. I repeat, no one has that right. These sorts of things should be up to the individuals involved.

Thank goodness we will now have a commander in chief who recognizes this. I want my children to grow up in a world devoid of hatred and bigotry of all kinds. I want them to grow up in a world where our lives are not guided by outdated beliefs and superstitions.

For me, Jan. 20, 2009, can’t come soon enough.

Leon Neff

LaVale

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