This is beautiful! A young evangelical, conservative Republican explains in the Atlantic Magazine on-line why he won't be voting in this presidential election. He's 24 years old. I was 26 when I stopped voting, and like this person, it was not out of apathy or laziness. Like this young man, I could not bring myself to vote for either party, not for any of the mealy-mouthed wimps and prevaricators the Democrats put up starting in 1984, nor for any of the prehistoric, mentally challenged Republicans. So, my vote was: "abstain." In 2008, not coincidentally, I am now voting again, while many conservatives are probably abstaining. This is excellent. It bodes well for a victory for Barack Obama.
This bodes equally well, too: yesterday, in line at my bank (yes, it's still open), I overheard two white, working-class types, a man and a women, talking about the election. You know, these are the folks the pundits have been relentlessly saying Obama is having trouble with. The guy was wearing a plumber's uniform and had a classic Brooklyn accent to go along with his thick neck. The woman, sporting excessive make-up and big hair, spoke with the same accent, though she had a reasonable neck. The point is, in simple terms, they were commiserating about why they were voting for Obama. My thought at that moment? "Landslide. It's going to be a landslide! I may have to apologize to my readers, after all, for my 'How Stupid Are We?' series."

Anyway, here's more of an excerpt from the young conservative in The Atlantic:

"I am 24 years-old. I majored in Finance, was in the College Republican group, campaigned for George Bush, my dad owns a successful small business, I am evangelical, and I live in Colorado, a swing state. All of this would seem to bode well for the Republican Party easily capturing my vote this year, especially in a year where it may be more necessary than others.
"However, last night while I watched the debate I decided to not vote in the presidential election this year. I know this may sound like a ridiculous forfeit of a hard-earned American right, but I honestly cannot bring myself to vote for either candidate. There has been such a pattern of disappointment coming out of the Republican Party in the last several years that has all recently come to a head for me, and become consuming enough that I can no longer ignore it and simply check the correct box.
"Balking on the environment, denying basic human rights to our prisoners in the war on terror, becoming more concerned with government telling you what you can or cannot do in your bedroom than, you know, keeping government small, all contributed to this new apathy in me. But I think the first moment that I ever squared with it was when McCain announced Palin as his VP candidate. My thought at the time was, “this sure will mobilize the base, but it is not a base I want anything to do with.” The succeeding month has only proved this initial notion terribly correct.
"My only hope, I suppose, is that as the Republican Party is cast into the political wilderness in a few weeks they do some serious soul-searching and find people like me who are already there."

Wow! I salute you! When I didn't vote for Al Gore or John Kerry, I thought the same thing - the Democrats, and the country, need some time in the "wilderness." Many of my friends thought this was reckless of me, what with the wars, corruption, financial debacles, and horror show the Bush-Cheney years have wrought, but I say - it could have been even worse if we had eight years of wimpy Democrats deadlocked with greedy, psychopathic right wingers, only to arrive at 2008 without a clear mandate to throw them all out. Maybe now, we're ready to take a quantum leap towards a more enlightened future. Just maybe.

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