Letís face it, a little bit of common sense (so lacking nowadays) and logical thinking on our part would go a long way toward addressing many of the issues the disparate factions that make up our great country are currently pettifogging on a regular basis these days.
Unfortunately, however, most people have a tendency to ďstick to their gunsĒ when it comes to said issues. Which, of course, makes any debate concerning topics such as gay rights, gun control, hydraulic fracturing, abortion, the legalization of certain drugs, gender (not to mention social) equality or climate change a moot one, as they say.
Me? I have no problem debating any of these issues. And as an all-American, democracy kicks Rocky Mountain canary, I-bleed-red-white-and-blue, God-fearing (not really) liberal at heart, I find most (if not all) of these controversial affairs to be extremely over-analyzed ... over-dramaticized ... over-what-ever-you-want-to-call-them.
In other words, none of the above require all that much thought if one is seeking a simple, fair and all-around democratic solution.
And before I go any further, I say not really (in regards to God) because Ė in my world Ė He (or She) is not to be feared ... simply respected. No offense intended.
Ah, yes ... religion ... another topic to be avoided at all costs (just like politics) if youíd like to live a nice, quiet and debate-free life in America ... which I donít. Then again, speaking my mind will probably get me shot sometime in the near future, Iím sure. My fellow Evening Sun staff writer, Julian Kappel, agrees with that assessment, as well, particularly if you pro-gun, NRA folks get your way.
Just kidding, I have no problem with the second amendment. I just think itís going a bit too far when a person Ė any person Ė thinks they should be afforded the right to own any firearm ... of any kind ... for any reason. And Iím sorry (actually Iím not), but thereís absolutely no reason for your average American to have in their possession the latest military-grade missile launcher, mobile anti-aircraft mini-Cooper or weapons-grade nuclear assault cannon.
I donít think thatís what our founding fathers had in mind.
Oh my, how my sarcastic nature tends to get the best of me, sometimes. Or maybe itís just common sense, although I suppose that depends solely on oneís point of view.
Some issues, of course, arenít nearly so cut and dried as others. Take abortion, for example. Personally, I have a rather precarious opinion on the topic, seeing as how I am ... a) against its use as birth control and b) all for it when it comes to cases of rape or a mother in danger of losing her life due to a complicated pregnancy. Again, itís a complicated issue and one that has serious religious and political implications, therefore Iíll leave it at that.
The rights of homosexual couples, however, are not so complicated. And those who are opposed to gay or lesbian marriage are really no different than the racist element that worked so hard to derail the Civil Rights movement or those who sought to keep women from the voting booth.
That, my friends, is as un-American as it gets, and there are times I find it hard to believe the decades (not to mention lives) it took for our country as a whole to get with it. Unfortunately, there are still large populations out there that still consider African Americans to be lesser human beings. And wives? Well, wives should be in the kitchen, taking care of the kids and youíre damn straight dinner better be on the table by the time I get home ... no offense to those women Ė or men, for that matter Ė who enjoy being a stay-at-home mom or dad.
Other issues, obviously, youíre either for or against. Climate change? Iím a believer (as are 90 percent of scientists you ask). Hydrofracking? Iím against, due to our speciesí long history when it comes to polluting our natural environment for the sake of money. The legalization of marijuana? Well, Iím fairly certain people will continue to take a toke whether itís legalized or not, so why not tax it and try to offset some of our budget woes?
In New York, they wonít even legalize hemp, which would have an extremely positive impact on our local agricultural community, but thatís a column for another day.
People Ė for decades and even centuries Ė have a tendency to act before they think, and seldom do they take the time to consider the consequences of their actions. Trust me, I know. I learned that lesson the hard way, like most do. Yet a little bit of foresight, just a moment to really reflect on an issue Ė any issue Ė goes a long way toward one making an intelligent decision. And if you take a look back through history, youíll realize there are many instances where a little common sense wouldíve saved a lot of heartache, a lot of lives and a lot of time.
Follow me on Twitter ... @evesunbrian.