Yesterday someone came up to me gushing about how she was excited that some person or other was going to maybe run for president in 2020, and today I overheard a conversation about “the wall” and didn’t join in, so it’s got me thinking about what my politics actually are right now because I haven’t considered it in a while. So I’ve listed a few big political issues and then tried to succinctly describe my current thinking on each one.
Abortion: I want to be moderate on this because I know humans have been aborting their unborn kids since antiquity, but that doesn’t make it right and I keep coming back to the very real possibility that human life might start from conception so we should err on the side of caution by not condoning abortion. Make it illegal.
Affirmative action: the only real way to stop racism is on an individual basis. Do away with affirmative action.
Death penalty: I’m on the fence on this one, leaning heavily toward being anti-death penalty. In the real world it just soaks up a lot of resources in the form of the appeals process, and as currently implemented the death penalty doesn’t deter crime. Now, maybe there’s a neglected human need to witness public violence from time to time, which beheadings in the town square used to fulfill, but I don’t think we can resurrect that practice and still get the society we want.
Drugs: Legalize them, but find ways to make drug use way more uncool and/or taboo than it is now. Basically you should be perfectly legally allowed to go home, lock your bedroom door, and shoot heroin, but there should be no way any sane person would then admit to doing it.
Foreign policy: The reality is there are lots of people and groups out there who want to do things that put Americans in harm’s way, so some foreign intervention is necessary. Sorry paleocons, but this is a highly connected world and isolationism isn’t a realistic foreign policy.
Gay marriage: Should have been civil unions. Oh well.
Guns: I dunno. Criminals who are intent on getting guns will always be able to get them. Gun control measures are already in place and keep honest people honest. Gun control advocates seem to not understand much of anything about guns or gun culture. On the other hand, I think the gun rights people often misinterpret the 2nd Amendment. Requiring gun owners to demonstrate certain skills every few years might not be a bad idea.
Immigration: We have a really nice country here, so we’re going to always have lots of people trying to get in. Some of them are truly desirable as additions to our populace, some are not, and the rest are “meh.” I don’t know what the ratios are between those groups. I don’t think a wall is a terrible idea, but I also think we need a better immigration system in general so that we can really have control over our borders and who gets in.
Welfare: Working people sometimes fall on bad luck, or even make mistakes, and I think it’s reasonable that their countrymen should provide a safety net to help them out during tough times. I don’t know how welfare can be structured so that it is actually helpful while also encourages people to be rid of it, but that is a fine end goal to have anyway.
There’s probably other issues I could comment on…if I think of any, and care to, I’ll update the post with those.