The Roots of my Quandary

One might ask, “How can you be a liberal and a prude at the same time?” The two values appear to be in conflict. Indeed, they can be as I have often experienced. There lies the food for fodder and the discourse at the heart of this column.

I have the unbound urge to question. Everything. Even God. Why me? Why? How? What for? Says who? And, above all, “What if…” Strangely, I do like rules and order, but they have to be reasonable, fair, equitable, and make sense in my universe. That really isn’t very different from most people. Most of us have some battles with society’s rules and expectations. Could be gun control. Could be prayer in schools. Could be birth control. Could be City Hall. Could be any number of issues.

My parents were first generation American-born of German and Russian immigrants who arrived in the Midwest in the early 1900s because that was as far as the railroad went. As a product of their religion and “old country” traditions, I was programmed to behave and, on some levels, think a certain way. I know they were subjected to ridicule, called Communists and Nazis. Never mind that their parents left their homelands to escape those regimes along with the fear and oppression that went with them. Most of my mom’s and dad’s siblings lived within 30 miles of each other. So, until I went to grade school, my values were not challenged. Until then, I had nothing to compare. Continue reading