I really don’t like Barack Obama. I wish he wasn’t the Democratic candidate for President. What I’ve been reading about him in Time, Rolling Stone and other magazines and webzines has indicated to me that he’s not as respectful or considerate as he would have us believe. He doesn’t quite seem to remember where he came from, unless it serves some political purpose. His friendships with Sam Brownback and Rick Warren make me more than a little uncomfortable. And his flip-flopping and position changing on issues like FISA have unsettled me as well.

Biden does little to inspire me as well: the alleged plagiarism incident rankles, as I have a thing about people writing original papers. His mouthiness worries me, as I’m not sure if he’s going to insult more people accidentally (after his comments about Obama being the first mainstream African-American were interpreted to be sort of racist – oh, and then there’s the 7-11 / Dunkin Donuts remark). Plus, he voted in favor of the use of force in Iraq, which – well, I’m a pacifist. War is bad, mmmkay?

But then I consider my alternatives: John McCain and Sarah Palin.

McCain, the formerly “maverick” senator from Arizona, the conservative who was previously so moderate he was almost liberal. McCain, who, as a former POW taking a stand against torture, almost had me. McCain, who supports drilling in Alaska. McCain, who is anti-choice, anti-gay, and who made the most incredibly inappropriate joke about Chelsea Clinton, which reflected not only his misogyny and narrow-minded insistence on traditional expressions of gender, but also his lack of respect for the family members of politicians – family members who have very little, if anything, to do with the issues at hand. McCain, who called his wife a trollop and a cunt.

And then there’s Palin. I mean, really: can I vote for a ticket that includes a woman who is a member of Feminists for Life (which, despite their insistence on it being ok, is still an oxymoron in my book)? Sarah Palin, who opposes “explicit sexual education,” the very same kind of sexual education that could possibly have prevented her 17-year-old daughter from getting pregnant and finding herself in the unenviable predicament of having to marry her 17-year-old boyfriend (whose MySpace profile apparently indicated that he doesn’t want children). Sarah Palin, who has gone on record stating that her daughter would carry and deliver the baby if impregnated during a rape. Sarah Palin, who doesn’t like polar bears, wants to deny same-sex couples state health benefits, supports dissolving the separation of church and state by teaching creationism in public schools, and believes that gun control is ridiculous. Sarah Palin, who has admitted to “not paying much attention” to Iraq. Sarah Palin, who seems to support the censorship of libraries.

I mean, really, when I think about it, it’s a no brainer: I may not like Obama and Biden. But at least they will treat my girlfriend with a little respect, and help to ensure that she can visit me in the hospital, inherit my estate and share my benefits. At least they understand that the GLBT struggle for equal rights is a civil rights struggle, not a subversive agenda meant to undermine the foundation of American life. At least they support my reproductive freedom, and will offer me the opportunity to choose what’s best for my body, my life. At least they’re striving to reduce arms development, working to encourage diplomatic means as opposed to threats of violence in dealing with other countries. And at least they’re open to the idea of socialized healthcare, of providing more affordable access to a greater number of people.

I don’t like them. But I appreciate what they’re trying to do. So I’m going to vote for them.

And here, by the way, is a great blog post by Ash about Sarah Palin.