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Political Identity and Geography

Updated on February 15, 2017
The United States of America.  Greatest nation in the world.
The United States of America. Greatest nation in the world.

A Hubpages Experience

Hubpages is one of the more popular, successful online sites available to freelance writers and Indy Authors, as well as individuals with various interests and intentions for utilizing a site such as this.

Recently, Ms. Lisa Vollrath, an entrepreneur, mixed-media artist, writer & designer from Euless,Texas, submitted a question for public consumption and voluntary feedback. I should mention, Lisa is also currently a popular member of Hubpages. Her question is as follows:

Where have you lived and what is your political affiliation? Lisa continues with~~

"I'm curious about whether where people live and how many places they've lived, influences their political ideas. So tell me where you've lived and how you identify yourself politically."


Lisa shares with her readers that she has lived in New York, California, Virginia, Michigan and Texas. She identifies as Liberal.

On a personal level, my immediate reaction was, "Great question!" I also realized I needed to give this some serious thought before offering my two cents, so that it might just be worth that two cents. I kept returning to this question in order to peek at what sort of comments Lisa was receiving. The vast majority of varied responses were fascinating to me, eye-opening and seemed to be authentic self-disclosures in terms of this particular topic. This allowed me to know it would not be easy for me without going back decades,taxng my memory for where I may have been politically at any given period in my life, "if" I had a viable political identity and why. Phew! I wondered, "Is this one of those times when a writer is allowed poetic license? Can we just fabricate and give some earth-shattering response that will go down in history?" I suppose it's possible that some people are tempted to do this. I am not~ just can't. I insist on honesty and in being who I am at all times, with the courage and conviction to say what I mean and mean what I say. Fortunately for me, I am not a politician, never have been and I'm certain, never will be. I say "fortunately," because this means I don't need to concern myself much at all with what anyone thinks of my choices & ideals. The vast majority of us needn't prostitute ourselves for votes. What an insane concept, don't you think? Yeah, me too!


Republican/Conservative/Right Wing~~Democrat/Liberal/Left Wing....and the few Generics thrown in for variety (?)
Republican/Conservative/Right Wing~~Democrat/Liberal/Left Wing....and the few Generics thrown in for variety (?)

Just like Frank Sinatra~~MY Way

Once I reached the age that gave me the right to vote, as well as a sense of civic responsibility, I always registered and voted, locally and nationally. My American duty-bound upbringing was in tact, as well as an enormous list of other "shoulds,musts & HAVE to-s." However, thinking back, I have no choice but to admit that at that chaotically occupied time in my life, I'd have never passed the Alzheimer's diagnosis test. You know, "What's today's date?" "Who is the current President of the United States?" "Can you give me your address and phone number?"

Seriously, my access to any news, current events and important info was found on the calendar hanging in my kitchen. I was involved, no, scratch that. I was engulfed by, immersed in and drowning in~ Life, work, school, kids, daily duties, appointments, hurdles and chicken pox. Like I said, I registered and I voted.

So the reality is, not until about age 30 did I sit up straight, pay attention and embark upon my political involvement. That may seem shocking but take into consideration that pollsters on the streets of America have discovered only one in 25 American legal voters can answer less than 2 questions on politics correctly. I'm sure you know this to be true. The upside to my late start is that once I dove in, I did it in spades and haven't let up in 38 years. I'd not be foolish enough to consider myself an expert (I don't know if any of us can be) but I'm pretty damned savvy at this point.

Our right to vote, as well as "privacy."
Our right to vote, as well as "privacy."

So Lisa and all readers, I am a native of New York State. Born,bred, raised, educated & indoctrinated as the independent thinker I am, in Upstate Western New York, not ever in any way, to be confused with Downstate, New York City and Metropolitan area. Please understand this first and foremost. The easiest way for me to explain the vast difference between Upstate and down, would be to suggest you think, "Green Acres," my part of Upstate being the "Hooterville" section. That should be clear enough.

As an adult, I moved around a bit but mostly for less than two years at a time before returning back to my roots. As you might suspect, my moves were due to career at times, Military reasons at another time and my summer in Germany was a choice. Europe was the furthest away from my home, while my 2 year stints were Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Correct, not very far from my home state at all, although as we're painfully aware, they can be worlds apart politically.

In terms of these various places I lived, it shouldn't surprise you that I found nothing that affected my politics to any degree worth mentioning. Back at home each time and for the past twenty to twenty-five years, if I listen to the radicals from either side of the aisle, I still don't have a "real" political identity. Although it is completely real and acceptable to me, I am and have been for more than 2 decades, an Independent. As well as I know myself, Independent is positively the ideal label for me and I'm more than comfortable with this. As you might also not be surprised to know, in discussions, the right will tell me I'm too left and the left of course, will suggest I'm too right. My response? What the hell do they know about me? Psst....not much at all.

To include a few statistics, according to the Gallup poll, as well as pew research, in 2015, our nation cited Independents at 43% ( that seemed high to me, but it's in black and white~ OH! not Fake News, I hope!). These two sources also state that Independents are the fastest growing demographic in the U.S at 28 million, also in 2015. New York State in particular claims 12 million or 28%. It should be no secret that New York is largely a blue state. Bottom line is that I'm really not so alone but would not be disturbed to find I am.

At the end of the day, I cannot even imagine myself being so radically party loyal or dedicated at any point and time, as opposed to casting my vote for the candidate of my choice. I also freely admit to having voted against the person I'd not consider to give my vote to for Dog Catcher. In a few of those cases, frankly, I had no choice except to pass on my privilege to vote which I prefer not to do.

It looks to me that where I live has not thus far had much influence to speak of as to how I "identify" politically. Many, many other issues have guided my choice but if I was to be a flaming New Yorker, I'd be a rabid liberal......right? I mean, correct?

I am so happy to announce that I flatly refuse to write, speak or listen to anything even remotely political after I publish this. I'll just see if I can hold to that statement! I welcome your comments and/or criticism, in any tone you choose. Go ahead, knock yourself out.

A short clip

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  • fpherj48 profile image
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    Paula 2 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Julia, Thank you for your visit and nice comment. I welcome you to HP, our friendly writer's site and wish you much luck. Paula

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 2 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Well...lookie here, Shyron & Au Fait, 2 of my favorite ladies of the Hub. What a pleasant relief to see your cute faces on this day from hell. I can't even begin~~ with the phone calls, arguing with Insurance companies, balancing my accounts, searching for "things" in my office that I know damned well even Sherlock Holmes couldn't find in this massive upheaval of a mess!

    Oh yeah, my day from hell has been all my own doing! My one and only New Year's resolution was to organize my life and manage my time. July 5th now girls and I hang my head in shame. Confession always makes me feel better. Now on to the important stuff.

    I guess while I'm beating myself up, I may as well concede that it doesn't surprise me that you both may be far more involved and savvy when it comes to the world of politics. At this point, in all sincerity, I am so disillusioned, near-horrified and simply disgusted with how "this" election, from the very start of the campaign to current craziness has gone so far off the tracks. I know I needn't list any of it for either of you. You're seeing and hearing it all as the rest of us are. I've found that even a concentrated effort to avoid hearing, seeing and being bombarded, just doesn't work.

    Turn on the radio, T.V., pick up a newspaper, magazine, go online, run into friends while shopping~~Arghhhh! There it is, in our faces, viciously attacking our oh-so-delicate psyches. (joking about the delicate part!) LOL I don't mind telling you, I'm worn out. More importantly, the vitriol, violence, defensiveness and division makes me very sad (literally). America should never stoop so low, but we have, we do and I'm not counting on any love-fest or intervention any time soon.

    Au fait, I may have told you this once before, (if not, I've thought it) you need to go on the public speaking circuit. You are so commanding, well-spoken, convincing & credible, I tell you girl, you'd make a fortune. How do I know? Well, I KNOW myself and when someone can make me sit up, pay attention and actually assimilate enough to consider self-inventory & perhaps reevaluate my opinions, you've got a magic touch or you've slipped something into my tea! (That's between you and me please....can't spoil my image.)

    Thanks for the explanation about your sea water hub, although it wasn't necessary. I'm on HP so seldom and not for any amount of time anymore that I don't fine-tooth comb my account like I used to. Yeah, this is another thing I'm seriously losing interest in....HP in general.

    Good thing this is my hub, my thread so I can blah blah all I want!. Like I said, it was good to see 2 friendly faces after my battles all day with phone ogres! I have a dying computer as well. She works when she wants, shuts down, freezes up and/or makes my screen dance whenever she cares to.....on her last byte or cookie or hard drive life....whatever...I know less about the tech world than I do the planet Mars.

    What I do know is that in a week I'm headed out West. Montana first to see my niece & family then down a bit to California to see son #1 & family. My son tells me he'll buy me a new computer while I'm there. I'm a spoiled Mama and I don't feel the least bit guilty!!LOL.....I'm done blabbing, aren't you glad??

    Hugs to you both. Always be YOU!! Or in this case, Yooze! Paula

  • Shyron E Shenko profile image

    Shyron E Shenko 2 weeks ago from Texas

    Paula, good hub. Dad was a political junkie and from I was about 14 we discussed politics daily. Dad would read political books favoring both parties aloud and the family would talk about the book and our opinions, which helped me tremendously when I was old enough to vote and I pretty much, knew who to vote for, I could tell who was lying who was not and who stood with them i.e. their party and to this day I vote my instinct. It has failed me once.

    My brother are one is left and one is staunch right, which is their right.

    The last Republican I voted for was Ronald Reagan, I should have voted for Carter/Anderson. I knew that Carter was a decent man and I thought maybe Reagan was also. I was wrong he towed the party line and most were/are corrupt.

    I do not believe that either party should have total control of our government, I believe the Electoral College should be eliminated, so that every vote counts.

    Blessings to you my friend.

  • Au fait profile image

    C E Clark 2 weeks ago from North Texas

    You may want to delete this comment once you've read it since it has no connection to this article. I want to thank you for commenting on my article about Seawater. I very much appreciate the time you took to read it and to leave kind words. I won't be responding to it on that article because I deleted it. Yes, I deleted the article because as a few people commented, that particular means of creating energy really wasn't feasible and in addition to sun and wind energy, and natural gas, all of which are cheaper to produce, there are other energy sources coming to light that make the seawater idea dead in the water, no pun intended.

    I would have deleted the article sooner -- I deleted 3 others at the same time -- but as you may know, when we delete an article/hub, we lose all the pageviews that article accumulates and those views are then subtracted from the total pageviews. I had planned to simply replace the contents with other information, but it's so much better I think, to start a new article with a new URL when possible. One must keep the same old URL that may or may not relate to the new subject matter if one only changes out the contents.

    My change of mind was due to reaching one million pageviews. It will be a while before I reach 2 million, so I'm not so inclined to worry about having a thousand of them removed because I deleted the articles they were attached to. Maybe if I ever get close to the 2 mil mark I will change my mind about that again, but for now I removed those articles I thought least productive and least relevant. I wanted you to know so that you wouldn't go crazy trying to find the article and the response to your comment on it.

    Thank you again Paul. Even though we may not agree on everything all the time, I still value your opinions because I believe they are honest and thoughtful, and I still believe you are one of the best writers on this site. Take care . . .

  • Au fait profile image

    C E Clark 2 weeks ago from North Texas

    I was a year away from being old enough to vote when Nixon ran and won the first time. I voted for him the 2nd time he ran. I was a Republican at that time like most of the people I knew. I also voted for Ronald Reagan.

    It was in my early 30s that I began to actually pay attention to politics, what politicians were saying and what they ended up doing. This awakening was a result of my husband's persistence in getting me to take an interest in politics that previously I really didn't have. He was majoring in political science at the university and I can thank him for my becoming immersed in politics around my 35th year in this world. Once I actually paid attention, it was easy to understand, but most people never immerse themselves. I was no longer a Republican after learning to actually listen to what politicians said and watch what they did.

    Anyway, politics determines the economy and how well you are likely to do in it. It determines everything, even the beat of your heart, as my late husband used to tell me. Somehow people fail to recognize politics in every facet of their lives, but I assure you, it's there. So you can ignore politics if you wish, but I promise you politics will never ignore you -- or anyone alive or dead. Yes, it even effects every facet of the lives of our companion creatures on this planet. All of them, great and small, wherever they may be, even though they do not vote or care about human politics.

    Yes, politics has it's way of getting its sticky fingers even on the dead to some extent. The dead, of course, no longer have to deal with it anymore, but their heirs and descendants do. What to do about Grampa's or Mom and Dad's estate, what information to allow other people to use and abuse about them, etc. Politics decides the taxes you will pay, it decides what information about you may be distributed or made available -- or not -- even once you are dead.

    Laws about everything are made by politicians and laws effect us all. Not every single law effects every single individual, but there are so many laws that do affect any particular person that the few that don't are hardly worth mentioning. Those laws will still effect plenty of other people and you will have your hands full just dealing with the laws that do effect you.

    Through close observation for nearly 35 years, I have learned that to have a decent chance of being elected, a candidate must be a member of one of the major parties. Yes, every once in a while someone runs and wins an office as an Independent, but I doubt that is true of even 10% of candidates.

    I have also learned through close observation that elected officials do what their Party tells them to do if they want to remain in office. I have seen elected politicians who have served for many years, and in some cases been very popular with their constituents, get run out of office by their own Party members when they failed to do what they were told, or expected to do. Both Parties will spend hard raised Pak money and general Party funds to get rid of a fellow member who is not a team player. Either an elected Party member will speak about and vote for what they are told to endorse and support, or they will be retired, or more likely, run out of office. Sometimes it will be negative advertising during a campaign, sometimes it will be innuendo and accusations forcing them to resign, because it's too long to wait for a campaign to come around. There are many ways the two parties use to get rid of fellow members who don't play ball to the liking of the people running that Party at the time. Both Parties use this means of keeping their members in line.

    And so you can vote for the person if you prefer, but if that person doesn't cave to the Party's agenda they won't be there for long and they will have no chance of accomplishing anything the Party doesn't approve of. For the most part, like it or not, it's a question of determining the Party platform -- it's usually documented somewhere, sometimes even online where it can be easily found. Sometimes it isn't so easy to locate because the Party may not want you to know what they are working towards because they suspect most people/voters will not approve.

    Even when you think you are voting for the person rather than the Party, because you like that person's philosophy or the agenda they want to push, they will change from what they say in their campaign speeches to please you, to doing what the Party wants them to do -- assuming those are different agendas -- in order to keep their job. Believe me, they know what they must do to keep their jobs and some will do it while others may not, and choose instead to go back to the life whence they came. The Party makes no secret to its members about what is expected of them to remain in their office.

    So you would do well to find and digest the Party platform documents for both political Parties because that is what you are really voting for. That is what will remain when all those lovely people you really liked and identified with have come and gone with no achievements other than to take up space for as long as they were tolerated to do so.

    Voting for the person rather than the Party will not change the Party agenda. The Party knows it must work around some people until they can get people who agree with their agenda and they are fine if it takes a little longer to achieve their goals. A Party member who isn't in agreement with the Party they represent is no worse than an elected member of the opposing Party.

    Read and digest the Party platforms and you will know what you are really voting for. Individual candidates may not entirely agree with their own Party's agenda, but if they don't, their time will be short. That isn't to say that the Party fully controls who gets elected, but they can control how long their own Party members remain in office.

    Gerrymandering determines more than anything else (and that is controlled by the Party in power) how long a person will hold a particular office and how likely a candidate from a particular Party is to be elected in the first place or re-elected if that is the case. I invite you to read my article on Gerrymandering and how it works and why it's great for the Parties and very bad for citizens.

    There is a case coming before SCOTUS in their next session regarding gerrymandering and it will be interesting to see how it is decided and how it will effect the status quo.

    I am for every person's vote being counted and relevant. Get rid of the Electoral College and find a better, fairer way, to determine the borderlines of the various voting districts in every state so that every vote is as equal as possible.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 6 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Fullerman....Yes, I suppose we must think now & then in order to come to reasonable outcomes. However, after the past few years, I think I'll adopt your attitude and just drop any and all "politics" from my mind, my vocabulary & my life.

    I am totally ashamed of 90% of our Politicians. They are blatantly corrupt and cannot be relied on for one second to keep the PEOPLE in the forefront of their duties, responsibilities & the decisions they make.

    At this point in my life, I do not want nor need the stress & concern of keeping up with their next scandal, investigation, crime or covert behavior. This past circus has done me in! Thanks for stopping by.

  • Fullerman5000 profile image

    Ryan Fuller 6 weeks ago from Louisiana, USA

    You see a lot of this in the South. How people make many choices based on political beliefs. I am not a political party, nor do I pretend to think I know the outs and ins of politics. I have some knowledge, but mainly I stay out of it. This was a very interesting hub. I really enjoyed it. Makes you think.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 6 weeks ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Devika....Thanks for the visit. Always good to see you. Have a wonderful week-end! Peace, Paula

  • DDE profile image

    Devika Primić 6 weeks ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

    Hi Paula, you shared a perfect hub! I cant say much about the voting there and not a political person. You a talented writer!

  • profile image

    Julia Simons 8 weeks ago from India

    I have joined Hubpages one day back only and the platform seems to be interesting in terms of sharing thoughts with the world. I belive connecting world with the power of words as words are themeselves very powerful.

    http://www.omilights.com

  • fpherj48 profile image
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    Paula 3 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Cam.....I see stable independent thinking, common sense and focus on the really vital issues in your stance. There can't be any reasonable argument from anyone on what you've chosen and how you arrived where you are. I'm in full agreement. Thanks for reading.

  • cam8510 profile image

    Chris Mills 3 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

    Hi, Paula, I'm a little late to the party, but I'll say a few words. I've lived in Indiana, Michigan, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Georgia with short stints, because of my work, in Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Kentucky, Colorado and now, St. Louis, Missouri....and a summer in Papua New Guinea. Politically, I started out far right. I was a sign holding pro-life marcher for most of my adult life. I couldn't have told you why at the time, but I was anti-Planned Parenthood. Fiscally and socially conservative was my station in life. Rush Limbaugh was my mentor.....by radio, of course. I've even been guilty of voting on a single issue.

    Sometime after age 50, I learned to think for myself, to ask, and answer the hard questions I had always avoided. I am now well left of center on many social issues but remain fiscally conservative, at least until the fiscal and social collide. Then I have choices to make. For example, I am more than willing to see my tax dollars spent to provide free contraception to the poor and the young (to the young without parental consent and with no age limit) and for free daycare for single mothers. I believe these two steps would curb both the poverty and the abortion rate dramatically. They are also examples of how I've molded my conservative fiscal beliefs with my liberal social ones.

    Have I been affected by where I have lived? Most certainly. The year and a half in Philly was an eye opener regarding poverty, single mothers, and the abortion rate. That may be the most significant effect, although I was well on that path of change before I went to PA. My time there simply confirmed my thinking.

    In the last several voting cycles, I have voted for Republicans and Democrats. If Republicans squander the opportunity to give us a workable healthcare plan...again....they may lose me for good.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Yes Catherine, I do know you are a proud liberal. I recall you suggesting I vote for Hillary, without realizing that was extremely funny to me. I didn't say anything in return, but now I can tell you, little did you know, I was and am Hillary's number one hater. I despise the woman with every fiber of my being. LOL.....IMO, she and her pig of a husband need to retire completely from politics, go into hibernation and never be seen nor heard from again.(and the asshole Schumer should go with them.) I know that woman is the dirtiest, nastiest, most corrupt politician ever, in the history if our country. Karma will get them so badly, it will be a nuclear explosion.

    But, it's all moot now. I can easily add that I'm not a fan of more than a couple politicians and I only tolerate Trump~~for now.

    I did not know you are a native of the Big Apple. I'm upstate from you~~the majority of my life. N.Y. is definitely Liberal. The past several elections, I've voted back and forth equally "D" and "R".....I vote candidate, not party.

    Our Linda Sue (Sunshine 625) lives in Orlando too...do you know her?

    Thanks for the visit, Catherine! Paula

  • CatherineGiordano profile image

    Catherine Giordano 4 months ago from Orlando Florida

    I grew up in New York, New York City. I don't know if living there influenced me, but at least it didn't cause any conflicts. As you can guess, I am a liberal, and proud of it.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Flourish....Hi! Good to see you in my neighborhood. Thanks for stopping by. In what part of NY did you live?? 8 States, Wow...you've moved around. I doubt I'll ever adhere solely to one party. IMO, it's too confining and I have to feel free to vote my conscience as opposed to blind party loyalty.

    Like you though, if I was dedicated to an issue that is exclusively of one party, I may have a different outlook.

    Come by to visit any time!

  • FlourishAnyway profile image

    FlourishAnyway 4 months ago from USA

    I've lived in NY, Georgia, Ohio, Maine, Virginia, Tennessee, Louisiana, South Carolina, Michigan, and the older I get the more liberal. I used to be independent although the university I went to was very Republican. Now, I vote almost exclusively on one issue because it's that important to me and affects so many other issues. I let the rest fall where it may. Where I have lived has dramatically impacted my experiences and thus my politics.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Hey Sha girl....I hear you loud & clear & I like them apples! I understand, I think you're one smart cookie & much happier for your attitude! You moved around a lot but I'll bet you're glad you settled in Fl in 1976. Now that you're poignant, it's important to feel at home!!..........I appreciate you made the sacrifice to read just for me! What a Pal!! :) Paula

  • bravewarrior profile image

    Shauna L Bowling 4 months ago from Central Florida

    Paula, I try to stay away from political and religious conversations. Both are topics that result in heat and dissension all too often. In fact, the only reason I'm reading this is because YOU wrote it! :-)

    Nevertheless, I'll answer the question. I've lived in Texas twice (born there, left and was back again 3 1/2 years later when my brother was born), Alabama twice, Missouri, Tacoma, Atwater (CA), York (PA), Philly, NJ and moved to Florida in 1976 where I've finally settled down (many moves in the the state of FL when I was in my 20s and 30s).

    I don't ever remember my parents talking politics. Whatever their views are, they keep them to themselves. I like that. My voter registration card lists me as NPA (no party affiliation) and I didn't even register until 1995 when I was 38 years old. So, how do you like them apples????

    I've only voted in two presidential elections and that was because I hoped my vote would keep the candidate(s) whom I dreaded winning, from office. Didn't work. So, I'll just go back to my little world where I've done just fine, thank you very much, and leave politics to those who don't mind getting pissed off at the world and having heated discussions with their fellow humans.

    I'm happy with my rose-colored glasses and the rainbows that appear all throughout my life. I've never been political, nor have I cared about politics in the least, so why start now? Besides, we're not the ones in control when it comes to government.

    The air is nice in my little bubble world.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Larry....Frankly, "labels" make me ill. If I wrote a song, that would be it's name, "Don't Label Me." I surely don't find myself attaching labels, unless someone insists. The crazy thing is that some people DO insist. Nothing like boldly admitting you're fixated, cemented to, unmovable & don perpetual blinders. Yep, there's a real fair-minded, versatile & worldly sort of human being.(Point me toward the exit, please.)

    LOL..."red, blue or some related hue..." I like that. The actual night of the election, every time they aired the BIG U.S. map of red, blue, purple and Blank, with some dude wielding a giant magic marker, checking off this, encircling that....I would say to my dog, "Look Toby, it's the weather channel!" LOL.....

    Well, I hope I got my point across......Thanks so much for spending time to read my work~~which is seriously not "work" but my way of having FUN!.......Paula

  • DougClifton profile image

    Larry Douglas Clifton 4 months ago from Tampa Bay area

    Paula, it's always fascinating and inspiring to read your Hubs, this one in particular. You're a great writer.

    The thing is, I hate when labels like conservative, liberal progressive, Democrat and Republican are attached to people, places and ideas. Now we politically label entire states as red, Blue or some related hue. Having said that, the policies, attitudes and tenets of America's two main political parties are very different and my right to vote and otherwise freely express myself is something I have and will continue to fight for as long as I live.

    Here's the rub. I'm an Independent too, but there is no Independent Party out there making U.S. policy so I make choices in the voting booth that best represent my values as an American, as a man, and as a person. Outside of thinking about issues that affect the human condition, speaking and writing about them seems more like a responsibility than offense. I've read you enough to believe we're kindred souls when it comes to "political correctness"so the political party that most aligns itself with that particular intolerance forfeits my vote outside of local elections. If that prompts someone to label me and put me in one of the aforementioned groups - that's their right - it just doesn't matter to me.

  • fpherj48 profile image
    Author

    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Randa, So nice of you to stop by and share your voice. Having been Independent for a couple decades & utilizing my stance by voting "D" in a particular election and "R" in another, assures me that there is no doubt that my vote goes to the "CANDIDATE" of my choice as opposed to Party.

    Having said this, I'm afraid for the first time in over 20 yrs, I'm having a serious change of heart. What I have not seen before but now cannot help but be painfully aware of, is the egregious, unforgivable and out-of-control behavior & un-American attitudes of the left. Sadly, I am now able to understand the labels, which I have always rejected, which people hang on the left, such as "Left-Wing-LOONS" & "Bat-$hit-Crazy Libs." They are surely living up to those labels full force.

    I am saddened, angered & especially appalled at the vitriol, violence, lying, cheating and attacking in the form of huge liberal Tantrums & bouts of insanity.

    Under no circumstances, at this point in my political history, would I ever choose to be connected with or supportive of a liberal candidate, vying for ANY position, local, State or Federal.

    Just in the rather small area where I reside, the largely "D" population for many many years, have been literally jumping ship as quickly and as publicly as possible.

    The Libs aren't even aware of the disaster-like damage they have done and will continue to do to their slowly-dying party. It's a National catastrophe! They have done this to themselves....I have no pity for them.

  • RandaHandler profile image

    Randa Awn Handler 4 months ago from USA

    Interesting perspective! I never thought about whether or not where you live affects your voting leanings or not! I would imagine that it does. Like you I have been an independent and have really voted for the candidates instead of for specific parties. I guess that's the journalist in me! Enjoyed the read!

  • fpherj48 profile image
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    Paula 4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Honey....Hi there cutie! When you say you've always wanted to "go to NY," I will assume you refer to New York City, as in "The Big Apple." I'm a Western New Yorker, as in Upstate, some 9 hrs and WORLDS away from the infamous city. The reality is, there's no comparison.

    Not only do I not hail from the big City~~I was born and raised much more as a sort of "country girl!" Lots of dairy farms and grape vineyards, pick-up trucks and Monday night bowling leagues! LOL

    I have been to NY City twice in my life~ and quite honestly, couldn't wait to get out of the insanity!

    But, you are welcome to come to my NY anytime! Just be sure to bring books and games and a casual wardrobe. I promise you'll love it! Thanks for the visit, Honey!.....Peace, Paula

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    Honey Halley 4 months ago from Illinois

    So you're a New Yorker...no wonder I've always felt a special connection to you, I've always wanted to go there. I'm sure growing up in Chicago has nothing to do with my political views. I think my feelings about issues started before I was born and grew and sometimes changed as I learned new things, ( you know, the real things ...not the fake things). Some people may think how could your feelings about issues have formed before you ever entered the world to hear about them, but what I mean is there was something in my soul that makes it so I could not lean the other way. I don't let the views of others dictate or steer my views. The older I get the less likely there is a chance that could ever happen.

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    Martie Coetser 5 months ago from South Africa

    I can really not see that one's locations affect ones political preferences. The latter is a personal matter - depending on your perspectives and perceptions. I would rather say that your virtual location - where you live in your mind - may influence your preference.

    ".... I was engulfed by, immersed in and drowning in~ Life, work, school, kids, daily duties, appointments, hurdles and chicken pox..." Same here! But because of this, I voted, only inspired by loyalty and a sense of responsibility, for the wrong party.

    "... the right will tell me I'm too left and the left of course, will suggest I'm too right..." The same here!

    Thanks for an interesting read, my fellow Aries :)

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    Nell Rose 5 months ago from England

    Interesting stuff, and got me thinking too. I am from England, yeah duh..I know you all know that..LOL! but I live in the south, which is a mixture of conservative and labour. the north always votes labour. probably because they don't see the real world down here in London!! cough!! say no more! but I have always voted conservative, which is more hard line if you like because of the crap thats happened to me in the past where local councils have treated me and mine like, well crap! so all those who vote labour down here don't live in the real world, and cons do.

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    savvydating 5 months ago

    Paula, I hear you on the voting thing. It was a week before the final day to vote, when I decided I could take the plunge. Once I made the decision, I was calm inside. That being said, if our President acts badly, I'll be on it. I criticized him before and I'll have no problem criticizing him again, if it comes to that. But so far, I love Trump's Cabinet picks. (Now if we could only get the Democrats to confirm them already) Anyway,I see that he's really trying to keep his promises, despite what the naysayers think.

    P.S. I may have to check out Ivanka's frangrance. ;)

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Yves, Welcome & Thanks for stopping by to add your say-so. Yes, I have found that it makes no sense for me to pledge my undying allegiance to a "Party." I am equally in agreement & opposition with segments of both sides, to begin with. (I'm sure I spent far too many years mediating between opposing sides in the Corp world, learning to see all sides, make allowances, considerong vast differences and finding the acceptable middle of the line. ) Learning to balance is not always a plus I guess, in terms of politics. So much for that.

    In all my years of voting, I confess this is the first time I have been so wholeheartedly and adamantly AGAINST a candidate & we both know who that is,, so I needn't even print her nauseating name...Thank you.

    For quite a while I thought I may have not voted at all, I was becoming so anxious & frustrated. But at the end of the day, I kept repeating to myself: "He's not her....he's not her....that's all that matters!!"

    I am literally abhorred by the outrageous reactions, protests & lunacy of the radical Left. It's incomprehensible, however typical of them. One would hope by now, they'd have risen above their tantrums & sulking. Poor dears will surely tire themselves out to a frazzle. I'm sure you've noticed, thus far, all of their insane efforts have back-fired on them!

    LOL...for instance, in one week, Ivanka's signature fragrance sales have skyrocketed on Amazon. She's done more business, thanks to Nordstroms foolish move, in one week than she has for the past 10 months!

    Thanks again for the comment, girlfriend!...Paula

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    savvydating 5 months ago

    I've lived in two VERY blue states all my life, with one brief stint in Texas. My parents are Democrats.....well, my mom, God rest her soul, is deceased, but she voted once and once only for Bill Clinton. After she found out he was a cheater, she was through with politics. Lol.

    My father thinks the sun sets and rises with Obama and all Democrats. How I turned out to be a conservative is anybody's guess. Probably, I was obstinate. (Kidding) Actually, someone explained what it means to be a conservative (mostly fiscal) and their words resonated with me. I am very happy with my choice.

    I can see your being an Independent, Paula. You're not one to be boxed in. Ha! But I like the Republican platform & I want to vote in the primaries.

    Anyway, Your wit shines through loud and clear in this article---as always.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Awww shucks, GF....You could never have "too much to say!!" I'd listen! Sending you hugs & smiles, Effer

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    Linda Bilyeu 5 months ago from Orlando, FL

    What an awesome discussion and article from one question! I've lived in NY and FL, these two states have not influenced who I voted for. Actually I only voted 3 times. Obama, Obama and Hillary. I had no interest in politics until 2008. Now I have too much to say! :)

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Glad you came back to add to our discussion & that we agree on the 2-party system. We really are not alone by any means, MzB. That topic of conversation has become one that many many people are at least realizing may be a real viable option. However, as with so much, I never expect to see such progress in my lifetime anymore!

    Have a great Saturday!

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    MizBejabbers 5 months ago

    You're really correct about the two-party system, Paula. There's no reason why the USA should have only two parties, except that the other parties can't seem to come up with good candidates. In the last election the Libertarians had some good "fair to middlin' "in their platform and might have been viable had they had the candidates. While their two candidates were respected men, Governors in their own right, when it came to vital international politics, they became the Lum and Abner show. The Green Party was just as radical as the other two, so it didn't have a chance.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    tsmog....Appreciate you stopping by. I find it positively fascinating how we learn & align politically ( & in numerous other aspects) as our life progresses. I also find it disappointing & futile how we insist to pull, tug & attempt to DRAG in opposite directions. I see that as our Huge comedy of errors.

    I'm sure you've been successful at rising above, around and beyond the "office politics & corporation stuff." We all, I think, ultimately come into our own.

    Peace, Paula

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Hi MzB.....Glad to see you. I appreciate such a thoughtful comment. For the record, I would definitely debate your junior college instructor or his comment in terms of independents. For just ONE of many reasons~~the statement you make immediately following...(parties have been "turning" for a long time and always will)

    But, in any event, I find the entire concept of a "strictly" 2-party system, far too limiting, unreasonably rigid and a total contradiction to America's vast diversity. Point being, isn't this the very issue being shouted from every rooftop? (Just one opinion from a lone, powerless American)

    Good grief, I would hope you are not a flaming liberal! Since I see you as an intelligent, fair & forward-thinking woman, I'd be shocked to hear otherwise. Congratulations on your political balance.

    Have a productive week-end...Or, on 2nd thought, a very lazy one if you choose!! :) Peace, Paula

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    Eric Dierker 5 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

    Paula you killed it on this one. Entertaining, engaging and educational, I like that but we already knew you are a great writer. They way you seamlessly brought in Lisa's question was very good -- hard to do.

    We used to get to say; "fiscally conservative and socially liberal" but I don't think folks like that anymore.

    I spend a lot of votes, voting how my very bright elder children convince to vote. They are way more engaged in matters politic. And this year it just hit me that what we do today has more impact on a 30 year old than on a 60 year old. So maybe their voice is the one that must be respected. Within limits.

    Here is one that is killing me and showing me that I am a confused independent voter. Dams. We "need" more here in California. No Way, they are killers to our stewardship of nature. And the water really goes to unnatural plant growth - bad. On the way contemplated side more water on crops means less Monsanto GMA for drought resistance. And we cannot rationally let our children drink our tap water. Our water alone kills the aphids on my roses.

    Same kind of balance with coal mining. Same with downsizing. Same with a danged "fence/wall". Same with Wall Street. Military, trade deals, China, Russia. Syria, refugees and new immigrants, and the list goes on and on.

    So I am a footdragging screaming not to make me independent. Gaul darnit you have to think as an independent and that takes work and time.

    The best part of being so is engaging with folks like you and Lisa whom everyone should visit at http://hubpages.com/@lisavollrath

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Thanks, Lisa....You handed me the topic. Your Question deserves the attention. "P"

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    Lisa Vollrath 5 months ago from Euless, Texas

    Good job, Paula! I'm glad the question sparked an idea for a Hub.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Ms Dora.....So glad you have added your thoughts. I agree with you. It's a fascinating question that makes us think! As we look back on our lives to determine what makes us tick (and vote) we can realize much about ourselves!...Peace, Paula

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    Tim Mitchell 5 months ago from Escondido, CA

    Great Hub Paula. I am glad I saw it on the daily notification. I don't seem to catch new Hubs any longer. Anyway, I thank you for sharing. Isn't it funny in an odd way how we learn and 'really' align politically much further into our lives? That causes me to wonder more about Lisa's question with local news and such influencing us. I know that it was for me. But, a lot of the influence was office politics and corporation stuff that formed my views. Long stories . . . Maybe that would make a good question.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Mike (Sweet man Mike)....:) Oh, I hear much evil around here. I SEE even more and if necessary, I will speak it, in defense, to protect my friends or myself. Never let the assholes take control.......

    My coffee is always fresh, strong, sweet & warm....just the way I like my men.....or "used to" and might again one day, but I seriously doubt it...and then, you never know...but it's not likely.........Anyway, I can always count on a great cup of coffee! Every day is another brand new opportunity to be the best that we can be.....Have a perfect week-end!

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Mike, I appreciate your very thoughtful comment. IMHO, it should never be necessary for any of us to go through hell, feeling as though we need to explain our political make-up in excruciating detail. We ARE constitutionally guaranteed our rights of choice & privacy.

    Per your 2nd paragraph, if all you state is completely accurate, the way you have described each party, if literally forced to choose one or the other....I'd easily lean right. I can say that with conviction. IMO, government is much MUCH too large, has too much power over far too much of our lives. Who in the name of God wants MORE corrupt, lying, greedy bastards in our country, controlling & directing how things are done and not done? Poking into every facet of our lives, adding rules and laws and do's and don'ts....in our homes, our work place and even our bedrooms. Definitely not I.

    Frankly Mike, if I could have the wish of my greatest dream, we would be a Libertarian country. I adore Rand Paul.

    Thank you for participating.

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    MizBejabbers 5 months ago

    Good question of Lisa’s, Paula. If I saw it, I didn’t have time to answer it because I’m too busy trying to turn out all these conservative, anti-abortion, gun-totin’ bills introduced by the nonpartisan legislative agency that I work for. LOL, but it’s the truth. I’ve lived in the South, or in West Texas or New Mexico all my life. What made a very strong impression on me was a U.S. government class that I took at a junior college in Big Spring, Texas. The instructor said that people who claim to be independent and vote for the man, not the party, are fooling themselves because the “man” wouldn’t be the party nominee if he didn’t follow the party line. (That was before Trump, of course.) Then following politics as a reporter and now a government employee, I find this to be mostly true, although today’s parties are starting to turn on candidates who are too radical to the party line (Trump and Bernie, for example).

    I’m a southerner born and bred, but I’ve also visited the Soviet Union and Finland. I’ve seen the effects of the total welfare state, so I can’t be a flamin’ liberal just because I’m a Democrat. I certainly can’t go the GOP line because I scratched and clawed my way past the glass cage to work in what was formerly a man’s field. I’ve suffered domestic abuse, including hunger, because I had an ultra-conservative first husband, a Texan, not a true Southerner. So you see, it was more my personal life experiences that make me a middle-of-the-roader politically. I’m also a Libra, so it is logical that I would want balance in my politics.

    I admire Bill Clinton, not because of his libido, but because of his abilities to get along with everyone and his middle-of-the-road politics. (Look at his relationship with George H.W. Bush.) It is said in my state that if you scratch Bill Clinton’s Democrat hide deeply enough you’ll find a Republican hiding underneath. Not so with Hillary.

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    Dora Isaac Weithers 5 months ago from The Caribbean

    Good question by Lisa. Perhaps people are influenced by different factors, one being where they live. The state I lived in for most of my life is known as a certain party state--a party I do not support, but like you Paula, I can see myself voting for an individual from that party if I like her position. In my case, no matter where I live, my origin might have to be factored in. Anyway, the question makes us think.

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    mckbirdbks 5 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

    Since this is a hear no evil, speak no evil, and see no evil type of hub: I'll just say, "Good morning Paula. Enjoy your coffee."

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    Mike Russo 5 months ago from Placentia California

    This is a very interesting, well crafted hub. As always I enjoy your writings. I am a native Southern Californian who joined the Air Force in 1956 and was honorably discharged in 1960. During that period, I spent one year in Japan and a totally of 2.5 years in the deep south, Biloxi MS, and Valdosta GA. I saw and heard things about how the proud south treated black people that still resonates with me. Having said that I did not get involved in politics until Clinton was president and I heard Rush Limbaugh putting down the President of the United States. I thought it was despicable. Up until this time I didn't know the difference between a democrat and a republican and until this day I'm still not sure.

    However, in my experience it seems that when democrats are controlling the levers of government, they believe there are certain public services that are better served by the government and want to regulate the functions of government. When republicans control those levers, they believe that government is always too large and want to privatize those service and deregulate the functions of government. The irony is both sides believe they are fiscally conservative, when if fact the national debt continues to rise no matter who is in office. Independents on the other hand have never controlled those levers, but they seem to represent the people's causes, not the governments.

    It seem like every four to eight years, the pendulum swings because people are not satisfied with the workings of government and want change. In the mean time, members of congress are constantly campaigning for their reelections for the house and the senate.

    I am a liberal for the reasons I stated for the democratic government. I'm am not conservative for many reasons, but the main reason is because when LBJ passed the civil rights act, the democrats from the south jumped ship and became the republicans. I believe their legacy in part still lives on today. This probably has to do with me living in the south during those bad years.

    Phew, I had to do some soul searching to write this. I hope I didn't offend anyone. I'm just trying to be honest and answer your question about Political Identity and Geography.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Jodah.....I feel for you~~Honest. I'm a blusher too and I hate it. Can we keep nothing a secret these days? Gosh Jodah....if you blush when an old lady says you're "cute"...what on earth would you do if she kissed you on the cheek?? Pass out cold??! LOL

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    OH BRO!!! I LOVE you, Thanks! You reminded me to pick up some Cascade Dish Washer Detergent, before I grow enough mold for the Cleveland Clinic!!

    I've hung notes all over, on the walls, mirrors, have written on my hands and even the car windshield...........Bro to the rescue!

    Bye, Gotta go, NOW! OH and onions too. Can't forget the onions!

    Peace Bro..........Love, Sis

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    Bill Holland 5 months ago from Olympia, WA

    It is an interesting question and semi-study, Sis. I'm from the State of Washington...it doesn't take a genius to figure out what political affiliation I have. LOL It would take a mammoth scavenger hunt to find a Republican on the western side of the Cascade Mountains. LOL

    Great read as always, but that's because of you and not the topic.

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    John Hansen 5 months ago from Queensland Australia

    Oh, Paula, I am blushing..or maybe I'm just red from the scorching sun :) Nope, not 2020 yet..that's next month.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Jodah....Where else can a worn out Grandma from New York, enjoy her morning coffee while being visited by a talented male Poet from Australia who has something positive to say? (And they wonder why we love this place?!)

    The only problem is, when I tell my friends I had coffee this a.m. with a cute writer from Australia, I can hear them whispering as they back out the door!.....Oh, pity them! LOL....Thanks Jodah....Is it 2020 yet?

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Teacher. teacher, Ms. Jordan....First, I thank you for the Valentine wish from you & Geoff & precious "kids." It's always good to hear from you. I miss our chats & laughter. I hope you may have the summer off? I had this private wish that one day I would be able to take a road trip like a carefree Hippie & visit both you and Tillie. I think of her daily. I'm afraid it's because I see her name & muse-prints every day & feel the tug. Bittersweet.

    Thanks for stopping by. Oh......and try ear plugs. It works. The trick is to just smile a lot and shake you head yes 0r no intermittently. Peace, Paula

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Ruby, I know damned well that I cannot be the only person who feels like they've gone up to the buffet table far too many times to stuff their face until ready to burst. Know what I mean, girl? I'm spending my morning searching for a topic to focus on that is so far removed from politics, when someone utters the words, "Vote, election, far right, Russia, mainstream media.........blah, blah, blah...." a flock of alien birds attack them and peck their eyeballs out.

    And that's all I really have to say today. Peace girlfriend!

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    Maria Jordan 5 months ago from Jeffersonville PA

    It is great learning even more about you, dear Paula.

    "I am so happy to announce that I flatly refuse to write, speak or listen to anything even remotely political after I publish this."

    I appreciate your resolution...it's the 'listening' that is most challenging for me but I continue to try to tune as much out as possible.

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    John Hansen 5 months ago from Queensland Australia

    This was great Paula. I applaud you for stating your position politically. I am not a US citizen but here in Australia independent voters is also the fastest growing demographic. People are increasingly turning away from the two major parties and voting for Independents or the smaller parties. We are disenfranchised because we feel the current Government is out of touch with average Australians and that most of their decisions are screwed towards Corporate Australia and Big Business.

    Anyway, it was a good question by Lisa to try to determine if geographics play a part in political persuasion.

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    Paula 5 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Shan, your decision not to "talk politics" often with anyone is a very wise one. Stick to it! I regret the day I ever spoke up with a single political opinion. Arghhh! I should have said, "So sorry, I no spick Inglish. I go home now, fah fah away."

    Swear...this is my last utterance. I mentioned to Lisa I would write a hub to her question and did not want to cop out.

    It's really an interesting question IMO because one would expect that we could be inclined toward our political choices due to living, working and socializing with staunch members of one side or the other, over a period of time. It makes sense that this is how clusters of a party are found in specific areas and eventually spread throughout, to create our predominantly red or blue states. Don't you think?

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    Shannon 5 months ago from Texas

    I believe I've heard you say before that you were done talking politics and yet here you are with an entire hub about it. LOL.

    Me, I don't talk about politics all that often with anyone. It's too much of a hot button issue and in the case of most political issues, I'd rather see action than talk. And I'd rather see people accepting differences than literally fighting and killing or arguing over them. Families and friends disowning one another because of political opinions. That's absurd to me. Unless everything about someone clashes with who I am as a person. . .but then we'd have never got along in the first place or been friends.

    That said, I can see how regional politics vary greatly and may influence the political opinions of others. I mean, local politics tend to influence views on national political issues. Maybe vice versa, or so it seems lately. But these issues and can loyalties change, too. I grew up in a predominately Democratic state and now live in a Republican state for nearly half of my life now. And like you, I can't ever see myself identifying with any particular political party. And personally, some political issues are not worth wasting my breath talking or thinking about when there are better, bigger fish to fry and to fret over. But overall, I think my values are what they've always been ever since I can remember and they have not changed due to or because of where I live. Perhaps some of those values come from personal experience growing up, but I don't attribute that to political influences. It simply was my experience. I can't say whether or not others would say I have "Midwestern" values as opposed to "Southern" values or perhaps some of both, but I suppose that values tend to influence the political affiliation of many people. Perhaps it would mine if I were a loyal party member to one side or the other.

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    Ruby Jean Fuller 5 months ago from Southern Illinois

    Only you could write on this topic and make it funny, witty and sincere. Thinking back, I remember the first time I voted. It was when Kennedy was running and two priests knocked on my door and asked me if I was old enough to vote, of course that won me over immediately. I voted for him and have been a faithful leftie since. I have a reason for being a democrat. I believe in equal opportunities for all people, and I refuse to be told what to do in my home or workplace. My mother was a staunch republican, but I think today she would jump ship! Thanks for allowing me to get political. I enjoyed reading about your reasons for being an independent. Makes good sense to me! Hugs..

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