Because when it comes to a small handful of things in life, I believe there are no gray areas. One such black-and-white issue for me is this: if you bring harm to my family in any way, whether it is by assaulting one of them (God forbid) physically or verbally, stealing from one of them, or committing any other heinous act toward any of them at any time, I will do everything in my power to prevent your attack and, barring that, to set things straight immediately. Thereafter, I will make sure you are punished appropriately, including, but not limited to, guaranteeing that your very existence on this planet, from that day onward, will become an exercise in pure misery, day in and day out, until Death herself becomes less a force to be feared and more a merciful bearer of relief for which you will hope with every fiber of your being even as you wallow in your suffering.
Some people apparently don't see things quite that clearly, however. From a September 2004 Democracy Now interview:
Amy Goodman: Do you think this is similar to the attacks on you in 2000?
John McCain: No, I have put the attacks behind me. The attacks that were made on me are long ago and far away. I don't ever think about them or dwell on them.
Amy Goodman: They were very personal, very harsh and they questioned your war record.
John McCain: And I had to get over it, and I got over it, and I don't look back in anger. I look back at running for president as the greatest experience in my life.
Amy Goodman: It's one thing to get over it. It’s another to stand with and campaign with the man who did it to you: George Bush.
John McCain: I put it behind me. I put it behind. No, actually, we have a very good, friendly relationship.
Amy Goodman: Has he ever explained himself to you, why he attacked your wife, Cindy, and your kid?
John McCain: You know, my discussions with the president are private. Okay?
The mainstream media are all over McCain like a marked-down, oversized Goodwill tuxedo. They call him a maverick. They call him forward-thinking. They call him a true conservative.
Oh yeah? The last time I heard, conservatism was pretty much defined by a series of hands-off positions. Government should keep its hands off our wallets. Government should keep its hands off business and let the market decide if something will prosper or flounder. Government should stay out of people's personal lives.
Look at what our current "compassionate conservative" leaders have wrought: record deficits, greater burdens and ever-more-complicated regulations for small businesses, and a historic and ongoing interference with, and intrusion into, our private lives at levels that defy belief.
And John McCain is fine with this. He cozies up to Bush at every opportunity, despite the fact that Bush and his Evil Architect Karl Rove spread outrageous rumors—about McCain himself, his mental fitness after being a POW, his wife's struggle with alcohol, and his adopted daughter's mixed racial makeup and "legitimacy", whatever that means—during the 2000 campaign. And McCain actively praises the President, appearing onstage with him during the 2004 campaign, and throwing his weight behind anything Dear Leader says, no matter how ill-considered, no matter how unintelligible. Disgustingly, and equally disingenuously, he turns around and befriends such Religious Right stalwarts as Jerry Falwell after previously decrying their intolerance. Crooks and Liars has a clip of (and brief commentary about) Tim Russert's interview with McCain:
Russert: Do you believe that Jerry Falwell is still an agent of intolerance?
McCain: No, I don't. I think that Jerry Falwell can explain his views on this program when you have him on.
Russert actually questioned McCain pretty hard in the segment pointing out all his recent flip flops and showed that he is no longer the "maverick" that he's been portrayed to be. Russert used Pinkerton's quote calling him a: "born-again Bushophile" to describe his relationship with the President now.
One more thing. John McCain favors allowing government to control women's bodies and supported the dreadful, dangerous, anti-women legislation that was recently passed in South Dakota. In short, he is anti-choice.
And that is another one of my black-and-white issues: a politician either sees women as perfectly capable of making their own decisions with regard to matters concerning their own bodies, their own families, and their own lives, or he doesn't.
For the love of God, for the love of the country, or simply for the protection of Dubya's new trousers: Get down, boy. Step down, boy.