My co-worker sending me this article on conservatives' identity crisis has tipped me to posting something I've been meaning to post for a little bit now. While I gladly self-identify as Republican and Christian, these have become loaded terms that make for quick sorting. The only problem is that I don't belong to any of the big categories that people tend to sort Republicans and Christians into:

* I'm not of the Religious Right, although I believe in the inerrancy of the Bible and in salvation through faith in Jesus.

* I'm not of the Progressive Left, whose anti-war slant I find naive and whose social justice heart is commendable save for the fact that they methods they propose will lead only to more injustice.

* Just when you think you've pegged me as a fiscal conservative, I start frothing at the mouth about the importance of implementing a very high gas tax at the national level.

* Just when you think you've pegged me as a social conservative, I casually remark that I think gay marriages should be legitimized.

* And just when you think I've eased myself into that sensible moderate middle, I tell you we need to be more muscular on the world stage, not less.

I guess I'm used to swimming against the tide, so it's OK if I defy easy categorization and don't have a natural grouping to identify with. I even relish this uniqueness sometimes, as it allows me to play the counter-cultural, as well as to have plentiful opportunities to learn from others whose perspectives are different than mine. But it's telling that I am so relieved and feel such a kinship when I meet another person who is young, urban, minority, Republican, and Christian. Everybody needs a group; mine's just smaller than most.
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