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Parental units disgusted with political views

Kathryn Reed, managing editor of the Tahoe Daily Tribune

Sometimes I wonder if I might have been adopted. I say this after having spent the weekend with my parents.

It used to be that my dad would not have a political conversation with me. It could have been an age thing. Now he just gets exasperated. You see, he’s one of those Republicans — mom, too. I have too much destain for political parties to join any of them.

Dad does have a great sense of humor. Earlier this month he sent me a series of photos of the first couple that he said I should frame and put in my office. Not having an office, I’ve decided to leave his graft from his political donation in the envelope it arrived in.



Dad was telling me Saturday night that the president is doing a great job. I asked if he was joking. No, he said. He was serious.

He thinks we should have our fingers in Iraq, North Korea, Afghanistan and all of the other places where we try to dictate policy. He likes the idea of replacing Saddam Hussein with dissidents who are currently living outside the country. He wants Iraq to become a democracy.




I chose not to bring up what the radical Norm Chomsky has to say about the United States really not liking democracies because then we have little influence over them. And we all have seen how the United States is not content to let other countries rule themselves.

I brought up the fact that the United States does not have a great history with knocking down one government and propping up another. I brought up the fact that just a decade ago we were supporting the Taliban. There are names like Pinochet, Noriega; groups like the Khmer Rouge; countries like Iran that makes me wonder how some policymakers get to keep their jobs. One day a leader or country is a friend of ours, the next mortal enemies of the United States.

We do not have a great track record when it comes to foreign policy, I told my dad. My sister’s friend chimed in that we need to play the role of Big Brother because no one else is there to do it. I wonder if the world needs a Big Brother that is such a bully.

My sister just rolls her eyes when I start talking politics with my parents. She’s apolitical. Our oldest sister’s politics are a little more in line with mine — analyzing issues and not adhering to one political party. Our other sister pays homage to the great Elephant.

But my parents can thoroughly confuse me at times. I don’t think either of them had a good word to say about would-be Gov. Simon. Mom has decided to vote for Ellen Tauscher, her Democratic representative, because her office was so accommodating when she was in Washington, D.C., last year and the GOP rep in her area did nothing. And dad voted for the medical marijuana initiative a few years ago — though my gut tells me has never gotten closer to the stuff than to see it growing among some tomato plants.

Dad hasn’t given up on me yet. He thinks as I get older I will come around to his way of thinking. I think I’ll just keep testing his patience.

Kathryn Reed is managing editor of the Tahoe Daily Tribune. She may be reached via e-mail at kreed@tahoedailytribune.com or at (530) 541-3880, ext. 251.


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