Location: Palm Beach County, Florida, United States

Recently have been told I look like Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island. I hadn't heard that in years, but that is a good place to start as to what I look like, although she had a better bod. I have three boys and have been married for 13 years. Born of a Navy family, in Hawaii, one Mom, one Dad, one sister and one brother. The eldest of three children. BS in Applied Mathematics. Consider Pensacola my home town although I moved every 2-3 years of my life growing up. Currently work in the aerospace industry in an engineering position while being a Mom. Of Celtic heritage and very proud of it.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Politics in the State of Florida- Are we Up For Grabs?

You think this does not affect you, but it may. I can’t figure out where the State is going, whether we’re up for grabs or it’s a done deal we’re going to Kerry. Either way, I’ll do my part and vote against Kerry.

Right now, I think it’s a public fight between the Christian Conservative Religious Right and the Minorities. Many will disagree with me and feel free, because I'm not feeling passionate on my stance here, but this is my gut instinct.

The minorities are still pissed about the last election. Some feel their votes were not counted, some feel Bush stole the election, etc. Whatever. But I have had this feeling and even commented once on John’s blog (don’t remember the archive) that the minorities would be out in force, ensuring everyone was registered to vote and getting them to the polling places. Last week I was in line at the Post Office buying postage. In walked a very tall and beautiful black woman. She had one of those lovely island accents. She said something to the Postal clerk who pointed to the back of the room. She walked over, took a stack and said, “Is this all you have?” She had 10-15 papers in her hand. He replied, “We’re not responsible for those, someone else is. We just let them put them there.” On my way out I saw they had been forms to register to vote. She was doing as I have predicted. It’s June. It’s time for everyone to get on the bandwagon.

Meanwhile, in today’s Palm Beach Post, headline, “Christian leaders organizing for vote”.

Barbara Wilcox works hard for George Bush, Bill McCollum and God.

And if Wilcox has her way, Christian conservatives like her, voting in the largest numbers since 1994, will elect all three. "We need to elect someone who will keep God in front of the people," said Wilcox, a retired real estate broker who is as active in politics as she in Tampa's 8,000-plus member Idlewild Baptist Church.

Gay marriage, abortion, stem cell research, banning of prayer in schools and the belief that righteous judges are being kept off the courts have enraged many conservative Protestants and Catholics who see the 2004 election as their best chance for political redemption.

Barbara Wilcox, people like you scare the crap out of me. What happened to separation of Church and State? People like Good ol’ Barb and her friends are ensuring that the two will be intermingled and quite frankly, I don’t want her religious beliefs dictating my life. I know, I know, they have been intermingled for awhile, but this, this scares me. This is what makes me so nervous in the Bible Belt. And parts of Florida are in the Bible Belt. This is why I don't vote straight Republican. THIS is why I'm really an Independent.

Florida is an odd State. We have the President’s brother as our Governor. We are an eclectic population. I’m going to talk gross sweeping generalizations here.

South of Ocala (Ocala is North of Disney World, about a half hour outside Gainesville, old home of Steve Spurrier and still home of the UF Gators) we tend to be an influx from the North. On the East coast you get a lot of NY and NJ folks, since I-95 runs from there to here. On the West coast, you get a lot of Mid-Westerners, since I-75 takes you that way. They seem to be more Democrat than Republican, in both cases. Of course, you also have a heavily Jewish population down here, which I never have been able to understand why such supporters of Israel are Democrat. Kerry won’t do near for Israel what Bush has. I digress. Then you have Miami, with a heavily Cuban population and they seem to be Republican. Our minorities in general, with the exception of the Cubans, tend to be Democrat. Move on North of Ocala, and things change. The socio-economics of the State are far different up North too. A whole other blog one day.

Up in the Northern end of the State, Ocala North, you have your true Southerners. (They exist in S. Fl too, but are fewer than transplants.) You have your small Southern towns like Milton, Two Egg, Pace, and Quincy. It is the Bible Belt with churches on every street corner. But the northern part of the State is also home of a lot of our big military bases. NAS Jax, NAS Pensacola, Eglin AFB, Tindall AFB. And we have more. Heavy military influence. Southerners tend to be Republican and so do military. It would seem to be more balanced, the Northern end of the state vs. the Southern end, but S. FL is far more heavily populated. And far wealthier.

So I’m not sure what to think. It will be interesting. I do definitely think that what we will see is big ugliness between the minorities and the religious right. Where does that leave people like me? I don’t fit in either group. I am horribly repulsed by the religious right and just don’t identify with the minority issues. (Forced to make a choice, I would side with the minorities, I just don't identify.) That leaves me going by my own values, thinking independently as I always do, and supporting Bush for I think he can slay the Beast. And I think most of the State of Florida falls where I do… Not in the religious right or minority category. That is what leads me to believe… we may be up for grabs.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

And then you have the lovely specter of the voting machines crapping out without backup paper copies, because some idiot decided they weren't needed - the machines would be just fine. Ah it's going to be a fun one.

-- Teresa

9:57 PM  
Blogger Graumagus said...

At least your vote has a chance of counting, here in the Socialist Republic of Illinois those electoral votes are already Kerry's.
You know, if I have to deal with this liberal crap I should at least get the benefit of living by the damn ocean like the folks in Cal. and N.Y.
Seattle is nice....

3:03 AM  
Blogger Harvey said...

As I recall, some of those "angry disenfranchised minorities" also included a lot of military absentee voters :-)

Whichever way the election goes, the cries of "Scandal!" will shake the sky.

Of course, personally I expect a Bush blowout, so I wonder if the Dems will still howl if it's not even close?

10:23 AM  
Blogger Boudicca said...

Harvey, you may be on my list of eternal optimists. I so hope you are right, that it is a blow out.

Yes, either way, Scandal will be heard across the land. I am just hoping it isn't Scandal in Palm Beach County. Throw it over to Okaloosa County or Martin County. We've had our share.

8:20 PM  

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