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I am a high school English teacher in an urban high school in Oklahoma City. I am a member of the American Federation of Teachers, Local 2309. I am a Democrat, a union activist and a worker for social justice. I also am a Christian (Congregationalist). I play chess and coach our school chess team.

Friday, December 03, 2010

I Hope the Republicans Succeed

The Republican Party has taken over nearly all branches of state government in Oklahoma largely because they were able to nationalize the issues in the state races and make this round of local elections a referendum on Pres. Obama and the national Democratic Party.

When Sen. Obama was elected to the White House in 2008, Rush Limbaugh and others on the fringe right loudly voiced their desire to see the president "fail" because they feared that his policies, which they saw as contrary to their ideology, would succeed and be made permanent. They were cynically willing to see ordinary Americans suffer in order to serve a political end.

I am liberal and proud to be so. However, I am not so much of an ideologue that I would wish my fellow Oklahomans anything but the best out of their government, which they voted for in very large numbers. I want their suffering due to the present recession to end, and I am not particularly concerned about who gets the credit. If Republican policies produce a better life for all Oklahomans, then bring them on and make them the law of our land.

What I am concerned about is that this government, and this goes for any government, deal with all its citizen justly. That they do all they can to respect and enhance human dignity, deal rightly with those who are most vulnerable in our society like the very old and very young, and work to make our presence on this planet more sustainable.

I am skeptical of the Oklahoma's Republican Party's ability to do this since it seems to me that they long ago sold their soul to rich and powerful who have little interest in the those who have been marginalized in our culture other than to provide them with a docile labor and consumer population. Their concern is for the short-term bottom line rather than the type of environment that will be inherited 7 generations hence.

But I hope that I am wrong. I wish to see my home state prosper. I wish to know that our choices have created better lives for our children and their children's children. Of course, I am going to be taking an active role in creating this success, and if this means that the Republicans claim justification for their victory, then so be it.

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