Earlier, in a comment here, I mentioned I was considering opening up a discussion where people could give solid, positive reasons why one should vote for John Kerry. It got some positive response (I think one), so I figured "what the hell" and decided to go ahead with it.
But first, a couple ground rules.
1) Only serious, positive statements about John Kerry will be tolerated. Sarcastic or cynical "positives" will be edited or deleted, as the mood suits me. (Unless, of course, I find them way too funny to mess with.)
2) Absolutely no mention of President Bush will be tolerated. This is to limit the discussion to "why vote FOR John Kerry," and not "why to vote AGAINST Bush." If you want to discuss that, there are a couple zillion web sites out there you can do that. You might want to start with Democratic Underground, the site so dedicated to free speech they TWICE banned me for not toeing their party line finely enough.
3) This will be a watched and moderated discussion. Although I am loath to do so normally, I will be exercising my authority to edit and/or delete comments. And by "edit," I mean I might remove words, sentences, or even completely rewrite postings as the whim strikes me. For example, "I'm gonna vote for John Kerry because Bushitler is an evil, stupid, drunk cokehead who has wet dreams of global tyranny and apocalypse" might get edited into "I'm gonna vote for John Kerry because I'm too stupid to read the rules and think they apply to me, and Kerry will make sure there's plenty of social funding programs to keep me happy and drugged and well-fed while I continue my existence as a waste of oxygen." Consider yourselves warned. (And before you ask, Rodney and McGehee, yes, I had you two in mind here.)
So, there you are. Any John Kerry supporters out there willing to step up and take the challenge? And remember, bonus points will be awarded to those who can actually look beyond vague promises and plans and show evidence indicating Kerry will actually achieve them.
Update: It's just after 3 in the morning, and I just spent over half an hour cleaning up the various and sundry messes others left behind here. That'll teach me to set a time bomb like this, then go to sleep less than an hour later.
To those who played along and took my challenge seriously, my thanks. You've taken steps to improve the level of discourse of this campaign, and I appreciate it. And to those who took the opportunity to engage in rants and slams and sarcasm, I offer a collective "get stuffed" to friends and foes alike.
Update 2: I've done the final housecleaning and closed comments on this thread. The next time I do anything like this (IF there is a next time) it'll be when I have time to babysit the thread properly.
For the record: Only a few people's comments were edited, and then later deleted. Despite some stated concerns, no one had their piece rewritten to change the sense of it (despite my semi-serious threats to do so). And while I had to delete a LOT of comments that broke my rules, I am impressed with both the quality and quantity of the responses. My thanks to all you fine people -- even the ones I had to delete. It reminded me of the danger of making promises I'm not fully qualified to keep.
One final note: Simon over at The Blogging Of The Presidency done stole my idea, reversed it, and made many other sundry improvements on it. I'd recommend going over there and expressing why you are supporting President Bush. I intend to this evening, when I get home from work.