This I Believe

Selene - Los Angeles, California
Entered on February 10, 2008

I am a 31-year-old, recovering Daddy’s little girl and I use to believe everything my Daddy believed.

If my Dad believed it, I believed it. Imagine if you will, a half Korean 5th grader explaining to her friends why Reagan was a phenomenal president and how the Republican Party and small government is the only way to keep this great country of ours thriving. It never occurred to me that his opinions were not necessarily the “right” opinions and I say “right” because my Dad’s opinions were actually more like truth to me. And it wasn’t just politics, it was everything. I loved the Denver Broncos even though I only lived in Colorado until I was 3. Total was my favorite cereal. Who didn’t love Yanni? I also abhorred the Femme-nazis Rush Limbaugh so often ridiculed. And even though I knew I wanted to move to Los Angeles one day, I too thought the people out here were spacey and weird. Thinking back, a lot of my conversations ended with, “ugh, because my Dad said so.” I was such a Daddy’s little girl, I never even rebelled. Well, I take that back. I did take a rebellious stand by refusing to read my father’s favorite genre of fiction.

Eventually I started to think for myself. It was a little later or actually a lot later than most kids but I’m just grateful it happened at all. Some time in my mid 20s, I had an epiphany moment: “I’m not a Republican!” Although my feelings and thoughts about things had started to change already, I was still claiming to be a proud Republican. It was seriously one of the more startling revelations of my life. When I finally told my best friend, she laughed and said, “I always thought it was odd you claimed to be a conservative but then had such liberal views.”

From that point on, I started to discover so many things about my beliefs and myself. According to Rush Limbaugh’s definition of a feminist, I AM a Femme-nazi. I believe global warming is real and is happening right now. I believe everyone should have the right to get married; man/woman, man/man, woman/woman. I believe in a woman’s right to choose even if it’s a choice I don’t believe I could make. And Golden Grahams cereal, way better than Total.

Over the years, I discovered all these wonderful things I believed because I believed them. And I loved it. I thought I had it all pretty much figured out. Then, Hillary Clinton decided to run for president. Growing up in a home that did not look kindly on the Clintons, I was immediately repulsed by the idea. I’m all for a woman president but Hillary? Didn’t everyone get that email about how terribly she treated the White House staff and the Secret Service when Bill was in office? That’s when I realized, I may still be a little influenced by my Dad’s opinions. And just when I thought I had it all figured out.

Despite having different opinions and knowing my once adored Daddy thinks his daughter is a bleeding heart hippy liberal who belongs with all those spacey weirdos in Los Angeles, I am able to have my own opinions because my Dad raised his daughters to think for themselves, (even if it took me a long time to start doing so). He taught me and my sister we could do anything we wanted and be anything we wanted. And although I’ve come realize many of my own beliefs are vastly different my father’s, I still share some with him. I believe people are inherently good. I believe in enjoying each moment and not taking things so seriously. And science fiction/fantasy, it’s not so bad. I believe my Dad, with his framed photo of George and Laura Bush in his home office, is a big part of why I’m now able to think for myself.