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Kings Mountain, North Carolina, United States
"A mind lively and at ease" is a blog by a first-generation Russian-Ukrainian immigrant Maria K. (Maria Igorevna Kuroshchepova). An engineer by education, an analyst by trade, as well as a writer, photographer, artist and amateur model, Maria brings her talent for weaving an engaging narrative to stories of life, fashion and style advice, book and movie reviews, and common-sense and to-the-point essays on politics and economy.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Today... I am no longer in love

No, I shall not hold Clint Eastwood responsible for the fact that I - a grown woman - was still holding on to the illusion that an actor's true character is close to that of the heroes he plays. I shall not hold him responsible for the fact that a friend of mine - as enamored of his on-screen persona as I was - made him a character in a book, and we both shared giggles and wishes for Senator Eastwood to become reality. It is not his fault that I wanted there to be a real-life embodiment of Dirty Harry, the Pale Rider, and Robert Kinkaid all rolled into one amazing man.

I also shall not go digging for questionable practices Mr. Eastwood may or may not have used in the making of his movies. I shall not ask for his tax statements. I shall not suspect him of mafia connections or of being a spy. I shall not vow to never watch The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly again. I shall not build a bonfire of my Complete Dirty Harry Collection, Space Cowboys and The Bridges of Madison County DVDs.

One thing I shall do, however. I shall remind myself every day, that there is no Harry Callahan, there is no Josey Wales, and no Robert Kinkaid. Frank Horrigan is not there to to take a bullet for me. Will Munny will not come to save my town. Frank Corvin will not keep a Russian satellite from crashing onto my head. There is no such person.

Instead, there is Clint Eastwood - an award-winning actor and director, the man I cheered on so heartily when he spoke out in support of gay marriage and women's right, who also happens to be the man who publicly endorsed Presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

I shall not hold Mr. Eastwood responsible for my dislike toward Mr. Romney. I fully realize that it is entirely on me. I realize that it is my personal stance on separation between church and state, women's rights, gay marriage and universal health care that puts me at odds with Mr. Romney's position. I am completely aware that it is entirely up to me whether to disapprove of Mr. Romney's "bull-in-a-china-shop" attempt at international politics. I know with perfect clarity that my puzzlement and distrust in response to Mr. Romney's refusal to share his tax records are entirely my own, and are consequences of my firm belief in honesty and transparency when it comes to running anything - from a mom-and-pop ice cream shop to a country.

Sadly, all these things that are my responsibility and are results of my beliefs, put me at odds with Mr. Eastwood as a person. While I still admire his contributions to cinema, as an American Citizen and a voter, I do not understand, how someone speaking out in favor of tolerance and equality - as himself, not as one of his movie characters - can support Mitt Romney.

I do not understand, how someone who had served as a mayor and had a chance to discover first hand what is involved in running even a small geographic unit, such as a city, can seriously believe that Mr. Romney has the qualifications required to run a country. Especially, considering that people of Massachusetts, who had Mr. Romney as their Governor for four years, made it fairly clear that his ability to run a state was somewhat questionable (when a governor starts his term with 61% approval rating and ends it with 34% - that does not speak well of his ability to govern.)

I do not understand, how Mr. Romney embodies the "boost" that Mr. Eastwood claims this country needs. Apparently the health care reform, the elimination of "Don't Ask Don't Tell", the lowering of taxes for the middle-class America, the increased deportations of proven foreign criminals combined with the improvements to the immigration laws for the law-abiding immigrants, the successful strike against Osama Bin Laden, and a few other things accomplished by President Obama were not "boosty" enough. Apparently they were just little trifles - I mean, heck, the man had it easy right? He only inherited a country astronomically in debt, in the middle of an economic recession, still recovering from the worst terrorist attack in history, and involved in two wards and had to work with the Congress hell-bent on anything but working. Piece of cake!

I am still in love with the Preacher. I still think that Robert Kinkaid is a charming drifter. I still think that Harry Callahan's monolog (you know the one I am talking about) is right up there with "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn!" and "Well, Louis, I believe this is a beginning of a beautiful friendship." I'll still watch Space Cowboys and love it as much as I always have. In the Line of Fire and Absolute Power are still damn good movies.

But Clint Eastwood - the person, the voter and my fellow American - no longer has my affections. I no longer wish for a Senator Eastwood, because I wonder just exactly what sort of policies he would promote in that role. Mr. Eastwood, you have lost my vote.

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