See, I've been confronted with this problem. The problem of putting a label on, and campaigning on behalf of that label. Despite my visceral drawback from categorical appropriations of human beings, I wonder if the thing to do here is step in. Step waaay on in.
A group of friends and I were talking about some students we have taught here, and how their work is often dissatisfying to us as instructors because of their lack of clarity. Their inability to distill their thinking into clear statements of belief or rejection. Ahhh...college years. Chasing one thought and then another because they all sound so right. Not yet possessing quite enough self-actualization to realize that we can call out the inaccuracies of someone else's thinking, or otherwise just acknowledge that we aren't bound to embrace the so-called experts' conclusions. Not having enough mental space to let the answers begin making themselves.
Hence--labels. Labels require you to embrace the school of thought the "experts" have stitched together. One particular label--Democrat--I am not ready to embrace. I have plenty of liberal leanings, I suppose, but I see the vagaries of accepting "Democrat" as my political identity. Since 2001, I have eaten politics like dinner. At times, the Republicans have made as much sense to me as the Democrats, but sure as soon as I get going, then I like the look of libertarianism. Then my smart voice chimes in and says but libertarianism is so worthless, like the Tea Party. But fiscal conservatism looks like a good idea so maybe...But then again, conservatism means people without health care or education...but then if people can't take personal responsibility for their own care...
Well sometimes you have to create space and sometimes you have to eliminate space to see the conclusion. Plus, I really want to stop swallowing my tail. I was approached to be "team captain" for the county I live in and conduct campaign activities for a candidate who is trying to unseat an incumbent representative. I don't have to be a card-carrying member of this party. Apparently a desire to see the incumbent unseated is enough qualification. The new guy looks pretty good, and I think he will wage a worthy campaign. But if I do the job, which looks interesting, then do I take on this label? What if he does something for which I am ashamed later? What will that say about me? What will I learn by stepping in?
Listening to: Alejandro Escovedo, "Rosalie"