A Sarcastic Thank You From NYC

Last week, I wrote about how this was the election of fear, with Republicans screaming terrorism, Democrats screaming outsourcing and rational thought flying out the window. Well, as anyone to the right of Michael Moore will now admit, the election is over. Clearly, President George Bush’s scare tactics worked better – just look at the results. According to the exit polls, the two issues that mattered most to Bush voters were terrorism and moral values. In a nutshell, fears about terrorism and the immorality of gay marriage led us to choose Bush, the man who would better protect us from both. I was not a Bush voter, but I will admit that the President brought superior approaches to certain issues, compared with his Senatorial challenger. However, I have to laugh and shake my head because terrorism and gay marriage were not two of those strengths. My fellow New Yorkers stand behind me on this point. I’m from New York City. We actually have gay people, so if they were a threat to heterosexual family values, we’d probably have realized it by now. And I don’t think that anyone will argue that New York hasn’t borne the brunt of it on the terrorism front. Not only that, but chances are, if and when the next attack hits it too will be in New York City – not in Alabama or Kansas or your particular suburb. If Osama strikes again, there’s a significant chance I could die because of where I live. I fully realize this, and surprisingly enough, I value my safety at least as much as those red state voters value theirs. In spite of these facts, how did New York City vote? The resolute, terrorist-killing President wooed a paltry 24.5 percent of voters citywide, including just 95,362 of my 574,109 Manhattan neighbors (16.61 percent). We remember 9/11 well, and if by any chance we had forgotten, the Republicans made sure to remind us when they held their convention right in the heart of the city, at Madison Square Garden. Ed Koch notwithstanding, we just weren’t as convinced as the rest of the country that Bush was our great protector. What conclusions can I draw from these poll results? Obviously, we’re morons. Other terror-targeted cities – like Washington D.C., Chicago and Los Angeles, all of which voted overwhelmingly anti-Bush – also must be populated by suicidal fools. It’s either that, or we’re all gay and itching to move to Massachusetts to marry each other. Thankfully, we have all of those Southern and Western “red states” to protect us from our own idiocy. On economics and tax policy, Republicans often criticize Democrats – and rightly so – for claiming to know how to spend public money better than individuals would. Apparently Republicans know better than us New Yorkers, however, when it comes to protecting us from terrorism, this much is obvious. So thank you, all you rural, inland voters, for protecting those of us on the front lines. Or were you really afraid that Bin Laden was going to target Wyoming and Nebraska next? If the electorate backed Bush because of agreement with his tax policy, I would have been content. If he were elected because people felt he had the best chance to ensure that the Iraq war resolved itself in a productive way, I might have disagreed, but I wouldn’t be outraged. For the electorate to back Bush because of fears of terrorism and perceived threats to the “sanctity of marriage,” however, personally seems ridiculous.