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Ask Anyone

if i'm Ryan, i'm dyin'

Should I worry about Paul Ryan becoming vice president? I read the New Yorker profile on him, and that made him seem pretty human, in both good and bad ways.

Voting Fraud

The Omniscient One says: Yes, you should worry about Paul Ryan becoming vice president, and not just because Paul Ryan is a radical conservative who wants to destroy a multitude of government policies aimed at helping people, but also because it would mean Mitt Romney would be president. Mitt Romney, the man who believes corporations are people.

There is a radio station in Buffalo, JACK-FM that has absolutely no people on the air or in the community—they only have sales personnel. Instead of on-air voices, like a Shredd and Ragan or Tom Bauerle, some faraway corporation has personified a fictional character named Jack, and the only thing you hear between songs are sound bytes like “Jack, I love what you play so much, I want to date you.” or “Jack, you always play what I want to hear. How do you do that, Jack?”

Of course, there is no Jack, and the songs are corporate programming, and these canned sound bytes personifying Jack can be played in any city anywhere. But the intent is to create the idea that corporation Jack qualifies as one of Mitt’s “corporations are people, too.” Corporations are not people, and Jack doesn’t know jack shit about the city that this radio corporation is siphoning money out of every day. This view of corporate supremacy in America is what has been eating away at our American culture for decades and has resulted in homogenization to the point of entire regions losing their identity, replaced by corporate creations in clothing, entertainment, food, etc. To surrender the presidency and vice presidency to these people would be driving the stake further into the American heart.

The Straight Skinny says: Well, one reason you might worry about Paul Ryan is that he has been so consistent as an anti-choice (read:, anti-woman, read: anti-science) voter that he co-sponsors bills with Todd Aken (read: probably not even smart enough to be a sociopath, so just a terrifying example of what people are willing to vote for). He is the sponsor of one bill that Louise Slaughter speculates, if passed, might allow rapists to sue their victims if they seek an abortion. He supports hospitals’ right to refuse emergency abortions, even if the life of the mother is at risk. He believes, for example, that if, say, an 11-year-old girl-child is raped by her father and becomes pregnant, she could be forced to have the baby, even if it kills her.

But that’s just one area of concern. Maybe you don’t think education funding should be cut. Or food stamps. Or job training programs. Or assistance to single mothers and their children. Maybe, unlike Ryan, you think gay marriage is a civil right. Maybe you think that gays should be able to adopt—Ryan doesn’t. Maybe you do not agree that we need to reduce federal spending on social programs and deregulate and subsidize faith-based groups instead-- spending money on PELL grants and food stamps, Ryan has argued, makes it harder for churches to do their work.

Mitt Romney chose Paul Ryan precisely because he needed a counterpart who would appeal to the basest instincts of his party. And that’s what he’s got.

The Gay Perspective: If you’re Canadian, absolutely not. Don’t worry about Paul Ryan, even if his election also means that self-serving and duplicitous Mitt Romney would be president. If, however, you live in the United States, be aware that Paul Ryan supports the Defense of Marriage Act, voted in favor of the Marriage Protection act, voted against repealing the military’s “don’t ask don’t tell” policy, and voted against expanding the country’s hate crime legislation to protect gay people. Add to this the fact that Romney’s views are even worse, and their election would be a disaster. Moreover, in the event that the senate is split evenly between democrats and republicans as some predict, Paul Ryan would get the tie-breaking vote on critical legislation. In New York, where Obama and Biden will take more than 60 percent of the vote, Romney and Ryan seem like a joke of colossal proportion, but in reality, this is a closely contested race. Get out and vote, and consider making a contribution to fight them. (Also, abs aside, with that rodent face, he’s not even that cute.)

Ask Anyone is local advice for locals with problems. Send your questions for our panel of experts to advice@artvoice.com.

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