Although some took me serious, I was of course jesting when I wrote a couple of weeks ago, "Why I am Voting for Mitt Romney on Nov. 7." I was more serious when -- with the help from a poetic friend -- I wrote, "Why I Am Not Voting for Mitt Romney on Nov. 7, or Nov. 6."
With one of the most important elections in a generation only two days away, it is now more than time to get dead serious.
So here are -- without any poetry and as serious and sincere as I have ever been -- my very personal reasons why I will be voting for Barack Obama on Tuesday.
First and foremost, because I love America.
Fifty-five years ago I chose America to be my new homeland and five years later America chose me to be one of her new naturalized citizens. On that day, I became a real American and no political party is going to take that away from me.
Subsequently, after serving my adopted country honorably, meritoriously, for 20 years in her armed forces, America truly became my country and no political party is going to take my country back. Barack Obama will ensure -- at least for four more years -- that all Americans are considered real Americans and that no one takes America back from any American, Republican or Democrat.
Second, and just as important, I have a fine, loving, productive son who happens to be gay. I have real concerns about how my son will be treated, how his rights may be affected, how the rights of all minorities will fare if Mitt Romney is elected. I have absolutely no doubt as to how Barack Obama will continue to protect and advance the rights of all Americans, regardless of sexual orientation, race, national origin, gender, etc.
Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are good, religious men. Religion is a sacred but very personal matter and it must remain apolitical. Church and State must remain separated, as was envisioned by our Founding Fathers. With Barack Obama I am confident it will stay that way.
Our country should go to war -- commit blood and resources -- as a last resort, only when our national security is at stake. Obama has finally extracted our nation from the disaster that was the Iraq War and is on course to end the longest war in America's history. Romney and the bellicose ideologues in his party are once again chomping at the bit to involve our country in unwarranted and possibly even more disastrous foreign military adventures.
I just happen to believe that when our economy is in trouble it is the job -- the sacred duty -- of our elected officials, of the political parties and their candidates to do everything in their power to put the economy back on its feet again -- not to obstruct its recovery, not to make the defeat of the president from another party their number one priority, not to hope that our economy "fails." I find a party's nominee who explicitly or implicitly subscribes to such cynical, un-American capers simply unfit to hold the highest office in the land. Barack Obama will continue to -- hopefully with less obstructionism from Republicans -- steadfastly bring our economy back along with our traditional values and unity in time or crises.
I just happen to believe that in the wealthiest nation in the world no citizen should face financial disaster when hit by a serious illness or accident or should have to make a choice between food or medicine; that no citizen should go homeless or hungry -- especially not our veterans -- and that perpetual enslavement to a financial "institution" should not be the penalty for obtaining a college education. Barack Obama has already laid the solid foundations to ameliorate these conditions.
I just happen to believe, along with Barack Obama, that Americans do not think they are victims; that Americans do take personal responsibility and do "care for their lives"; that those Americans who pay little or no income tax do so because they don't earn enough or are elderly Americans who are collecting the fruits of their lifelong contributions and sacrifice; that among the 47 percent who are allegedly "dependent upon government" are millions of veterans who have given their country everything, including health and limbs. Anyone who has such a derisive opinion of 47 percent of a nation's citizenry does not deserve to be their president.
Romney's inconsistencies at best, cruel betrayals at worse, on women's rights, gay rights, health care, illegal guns, climate change and numerous other critical issues and his turning a blind eye to his party's blatant voter registration and intimidation actions along with so many other sleazy political shenanigans are not the constancy and character traits I want to see in our next president.
Finally, I will vote for Barack Obama on Tuesday because he has refused to be swiftboated, to be mowed down, to be defeated by a barrage of shameful and withering attacks not only on his leadership and rightful accomplishments -- such as the death of Osama bin Laden which eluded his predecessor -- but also on his birthright, his patriotism, his religion, his race, and even on his family and his manhood.
Barack Obama has withstood, prevailed and thwarted each one of these scurrilous attacks in a dignified -- presidential -- manner. He has been tested, steeled and has gained the resoluteness to serve America even better in his second term.
Photo: Released by DoD