Friday, April 22, 2011



Why am I different?

I was at a party a couple of weeks ago with some people we have been friends with for years. One of them, a man who I have known since 1968, made a comment that really bothered me. He said “We don’t know where he went wrong, being the liberal that he is.” Being that we were at a social function that was thrown in our honor (my 35th wedding anniversary is on April 24) I just laughed it off because I didn’t feel like getting into some deep discussion about politics.

It did make me think though. I was born in Atlanta, lived in Charlotte for 5 years and have lived in the Birmingham metro area for 43 years. Most of my family (that I know of) is conservative in their views of politics. Why am I different?

I went to the same high school as my friends. We studied the same subjects. My parents were by no means liberal. Mom and Dad grew up in Atlanta, true southerners. I used to listen to my Grandfather talk horribly about African-Americans, but I have no prejudice based on race.

There was a study done by UC San Diego and Harvard University found that a gene called DRD4 may be the answer. It’s hard for me to believe that my views are based on chemistry. I am a very logical person. Could that be the answer?

My teenage years occurred during the Nixon years. I was fascinated with Watergate. I could see that Nixon and his group were crooks. My mother thought it was no big deal and he was railroaded into resigning. Is that where my thoughts were formed? Was the fact that I followed the writings of Woodward & Bernstein my education into progressive thought?

In college I started with studying for a degree in Business Management. After sitting through a thoroughly boring Economics class I decided I’d had enough, and I switched to a major of History with a minor in Psychology. Was my interest in the study of the mind the key?

Now just three weeks away from my 56th birthday I still don’t know the answer. I do know one thing….I will never subscribe to the conservative way of thinking.

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