Asking the (W)right questions

My dad sent me a link to this film and asked me if think it’s valid. Take a look:

In a word, no, I don’t think this is valid. My issue is with the questions that are being raised. This approach attempts to make McCain account for these crazy views espoused by one of his supporters. Basically, it’s a move to try and get McCain to answer: “Do you agree with or repudiate these views?” Seems fair in light of what happened to Obama, Wright?

Problem is, it is not legitimate to try and make McCain, Obama, or anyone else account for the views or statements made by their supporters. Instead, we need to hold them accountable to their own beliefs and actions. In McCain’s case, the questions can and should be raised: what are your views on the practice of Islam in America and elsewhere? And why is your campaign seeking out endorsements from religiously-bigoted pastors? For Obama, he shouldn’t be asked to approve of or repudiate everything Rev. Wright ever said, but I think it’s fair to ask why, in light of Rev. Wright’s controversial views, did he attend Trinity UCC for so long?

Each of these approaches to McCain’s and Obama’s pastors provides room for the nuance that has gone missing on both sides of this issue. And that’s what is needed, not simply to do unto them what was done unto us.

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Other states can pick a president too

With all due respect to the citizens of Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina, how is it fair that they get such disproportionate power over the rest of us every election cycle? Why should some states always be given greater influence to determine the presidential nominee, over and over again?

primaries_early.jpgI’m getting ready to vote, but my two favorite candidates have already dropped out, because these other privileged states have already determined them not to be viable. Same thing happened in 2004. Same states.

It’s time to shake up that unfair influence. The privilege of picking the “viable” nominees should be on a rotation, not just given to the same select voters every time.

Here’s the Tom Ryberg proposal:

Every four years, the major parties pick three different states to go first: one coastal, one midwestern, and one southern. All others vote on Super Tuesday, or thereafter.

Think I’m onto something? Tired of voting after it’s all but been predetermined for you already? Tell them about it (and while you’re at it, tell them too).