Thursday, September 08, 2005

A Personal Paradox

I've been gently informed by my Mom that I might want to "back off the political stuff" on my blog, because I'm sounding like Republicans used to sound when Clinton was in office. And I remember at the time, SWEARING I would never, ever sink to that level, because the behavior of the rabid right-wingers during the Clinton years disgusted me so.

Now, here's the thing about my Mom. She is beautiful and brilliant and wonderful and compassionate and the best person who could ever have been appointed by God to raise ME (it was NOT a task for the faint of heart). She is a shining example of God's expectations of us here on earth. She's tough, she's fair, she's generous to a fault, she has the work ethic of that Jamaican family, the Hedleys, from the old "In Living Color" sketches ("What?!? You mean you only got t'ree job? Is you lazy, mon?"), and she has a capacity to love and forgive that is beyond anything you could EVER imagine. Trust me on this. And she votes Republican. Not all the time--I don't think there's ever an election when she doesn't split her ballot (as do I) at least a somewhat--but for the most part. It's what she feels is right, and she respects that in my politics, I am doing what I feel is right, both of us with the guidance of God, as we understand it through prayer, reflection, and the burdens which are placed on our hearts. We joke that we go to the polls to cancel each other out, although at least on the local level, we don't.

NOW--Wrap your mind around this paradox: MY MOTHER IS ALWAYS RIGHT. That's right. And while I am firm in my political and social convictions, and realize that they don't always agree with hers, I am still able to accept the fact that darn it, she's never wrong. She may have opinions that do not agree with mine, but when it comes down to facts, and the basic truths of life, she's infallible. You know, like the Pope is supposed to be--only he's not, my Mom is. (All right, I made that up, no one's infallible, not even the Pope, apologies to devout Catholics everywhere, but IMO we're all human and therefore imperfect.) Hey, if I can follow movies like "The Jacket", I can sure grasp this personal paradox in my life.

SO--the point here is, while I may still do some "commenting" on political/social topics(I can hardly see being able to keep from it, with the way things are going), I'll try to leave it to the facts and cut down on the mouth-foaming editorializing. I was doing pretty well on that Witt post until I lost it a little and got emotional. But hey, if you haven't heard, I'm a little crazy lately. We'll blame it on that.

Oh, and the perfect irony here? My mother's MOTHER? Another gorgeous, brilliant, well-informed, compassionate Southern lady (I mean, it had to come from SOMEWHERE, right?), who happens to be a devout Christian, a Southern Baptist, a genteel, generous individual who votes Democrat. That's right. And you know what? SHE is also right. My heart fills with joy at just the thought of my whole fantastic family. We don't all agree, but none of us are wrong. How about that?


  1. It must run in the family--I am a parodox myself. Your mom and I were raised to be staunch Democrats. I have spent my entire adult life as a public servant, a social worker at heart. I used to say (in my younger days) that I would never be able to understand how a government employee could EVER vote Republican. *However*, my strong moral convictions have come to the forefront and changed my vote in many elections in recent years. I think even my Dad (were he still alive) would not be voting Democratic these days. Oh well, like you said, we have to vote as we feel God leads us, based on our own burdens and convictions. And we can do that--that's what makes America great!

  2. And it's my own (and your mother's, and lots of other people's) strong moral convictions that lead us *away* from many current Republican candidates. Life is weird like that. But there is a larger plan at play here than we know about, and it may NOT be God's plan for the "best man" (or woman) to run this country...or any other. Always something to consider--that God's will in any particular situation may have squat in common with OUR will. We're rather insignificant spectators in the whole thing, when you get right down to it.

    I think if Christ were here, He would be doing what would bring the most benefit to the most people. And that's where I tend to put my votes.

    And a two-party system just stinks. Studies show, anyway, the the best form of government for the largest number of people is a "benevolent autocracy"...I know a few folks I'd nominate queen/king for life under that system!

  3. now that i know your family reads this, i feel i can't swear or say anything rude. i may never comment again. :-)

  4. I hate political party labels in most cases. And it's sad to say that many times, when we vote, the choice is "the lesser of two evils". Sometimes choosing sides politically is like "rating sins". You know, "Well, this sin is a lot worse than that sin". However, sin is sin. Simple, isn't it? Pray hard and often and vote every time your country gives you the opportunity, then acknowledge that ultimately, only God has the power.

  5. Jen, you crack me up.

    FAMILY: I ADORE jenB, and as such, you must adore her, too, even if she occasionally says a naughty word or expresses a sentiment such as a suggestion that someone might perhaps "bite" part of her anatomy. (It's not like we've NEVER heard such a thing within familial confines, after all.)

    She is a loving, giving, caring, empathetic, sentimental, mushy pushover of a human being, and you can make her cry really easily. She also has a dry, ascerbic wit that would fit RIGHT IN at any of our holiday dinners. We have even said to each other, via IM, the famous expression of our family's women, "GET OUTTA MY HEAD!"

    In short, she is da bomb, and you will love her. That is all.

    And Jen, you WILL keep posting. That is all. I would miss you like chocolate if you went away.

  6. Oh, and for those who are wondering--Auntie Mel is my mother's sister, and ALSO is ALWAYS RIGHT. Just don't even try, you won't get by.

  7. Tamborine art.... very very scary.

    Must be the work of republicans. :-)

  8. How lucky for Bella that she will grow up surrounded by such amazing women. And one day start her own blog and write a post about HER beautiful, brilliant, compassionate mother who is ALWAYS RIGHT! Something to look forward to, isn't it?

  9. I think if God was super involved in how we're sinking this planet, he'd slap Barbara Bush for saying that the people who have lost everything and are barely alive and are probably seeing Houston for the first time FROM INSIDE THE ASTRODOME WHERE THEY WERE LUCKY ENOUGH TO BE RESCUED TO...he'd slap her for saying it's 'working out well for these people'. These people?

    Ooopsie, I *was* gonna comment on how getting away from the mouth foaming thing is probably good for both of us but I got lost somehow...

    and mom - you really shouldn't visit my little space because it is decidedly more NYC than southern Baptist :)

  10. Well, I too try to stay away from the foaming mouth stuff but honestly there are just some things that go on in America and the World today that demand a month foaming rant. I suppose its on a day to day basis :-)

  11. Here is something that I have come to figure out and its probably beneficial at this young age. Mothers are ALWAYS right, no matter how wrong you think that they are or how different their opinion is from yours, they are ultimately going to win. I don't know if its experience, age, or Gods gift for putting up with little heithans like me but no matter what they win, hands down, every time.


  12. I like your views and your thinking! If your mother has probs with it, tell her to talk to ME and I will set her straight!

    Uhm....just don't tell her I said it. Make it look like your idea, as I am pretty sure your mom could kick my butt!!!


  13. Totally agree...your mom is wonderful!!!!

    Your whole family is wonderful, and your dad (and you already know this) was absolutely one of the BEST men I've ever had the privilege to know in my life.

    He and Paul Smith are the two people I have looked up to MOST in this crazy world.

    Love you,

  14. Nita---Mom ADORES NYC! ;-)

    Tony--That's the great thing about this mom of mine. She *doesn't* have a problem with my personal views, just doesn't want me to be bitter. She'd love you--that's what she does. Oh, and you're probably right--she's a little woman, but I think she could take just about anyone. Heh!

    And can you believe the Stevie Nicks tambourine thing? Can it be a coincidence, my discovering that just after "meeting" snicks? Hmmm.

  15. Lisa, thank you so much. You know I think so highly of you, and that you loved him means so much to me. Oh, geez, here I go again with the crying. Sheesh. You know, today is "the day", but this is not what I want to commemorate. I will celebrate Zane's LIFE, on his birthday, which is the day after Bella's!

  16. this whole comment thread is going to make me cry for the love of pete.

    belinda, you are all you said i was and more. i feel fortunate to have found you as my wonderful and new bloggy friend.


  17. Oh, pshaw. Take a compliment, ya big whiner! We are certainly of a pair, aren't we? ;-)