the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

I Married a Republican!


Sometimes, I wish I were more political.   I love the passion of some of my readers like JJ and Tatyana, who if they met in real life, might have a fist-fight over George Bush — is he good or evil?

I was brought up in a liberal, union-oriented family.  My grandparents had a photo of Eleanor Roosevelt on the wall with the rest of the family photos.  During the summer, I went to Camp Kinder-Ring, a liberal Jewish summer camp in the Catskills.  It was not a religious place.  In fact, it was an anti-religious Jewish-Yiddish socialist-oriented camp.  On Shabbat, we gathered around the flagpole wearing all white and singing Yiddish socialist songs.  Of course the meaning was totally lost on most of the campers, who were mostly from Long Island and cared more about sex and soccer than socialism.  On the other side of the lake was a rival camp that broke away from this camp sixty years ago because while we were “socialist,” they were “communist.”

I went to Columbia College in New York.  There was one Republican in our freshman dorm.  All he ever did was complain that he didn’t get into Yale like his father.  We used to make fun of him relentlessly.

I didn’t really associate with many Republicans in Los Angeles when I first moved here.  Then I met Sophia.   

We may have fought over many things, but I don’t think we ever fought over politics. 

Actually, that’s not true.  There was once.  One election day a few years back, we promised not to vote at all, since we were going to cancel each other out anyway.  Later, we bumped into each other at the polling station.

Of course, I never considered Sophia a “real” Republican.  No real Republicans go skinny-dipping in Spain.  And I’m sure she never thought of me as a “real” Democrat.  Although I voted for Kerry, I wasn’t upset that Bush actually won. 

Here’s something we always talk about — which party is nastier, Democrats or Republicans?  Both of them create outlandish political ads – from Willie Horton to that recent ad accusing John Roberts of strangling women who wanted to have abortions. 

Sophia frequently gets phone calls from the Republican Party, trying to scare her into thinking that “liberals” are taking over the country.  Excuse me, Karl Rove, but where exactly is this happening?  Do Jesse Jackson and Michael Moore really control everything from their “love-pad” on the Upper West Side?

I also get calls from the Democrats.  They always are trying to scare me into thinking my “civil liberties” are disappearing.   Recently, some woman called about some teacher initiative that Schwarzenegger is trying to get passed:

“If this passes, God help us all!  California will become like Mussolini’s Italy.”

These scare tactics drive me crazy.  We Democrats are supposed to be the "smart ones."  So why am I always spoken to like I’m an idiot?  I’m sure there are many valid reasons for this intiative to be rejected, but I certainly didn’t hear any from this caller.   How about teachers will lose jobs?   It will hurt the economy?   But I really doubt the governer is about to bring over some of his goose-stepping family from Austria.   When I was on the phone with this woman, all I could think was that she should get a job writing movie ads for the studios:

“This is the one film you MUST see this year or you will DIE!”

Charlie once linked to a Slate article where writer Richard Rushfield did a little social experiment during the 2004 campaign. 

He visited Republican strongholds such as Bakersfield and Newport Beach sporting a Kerry-Edwards ’04 t-shirt and button, as well as Democrat bastions such as Silverlake and Brentwood in Los Angeles.

The result:  The Republicans were much more tolerant of the Democrats than the other way around.

Of course, it was a heated time during that election, but it got ugly at times.  Remember the whole red state/blue state thing?  Or that website that suggested that half the country break away from the ugly Bush states?  Whatever happened to rational dialogue?  I find conservative talk show hosts like Sean Hannity to be pretty depressing and unpleasant, but I expect more from liberals. 

I’d like to think that liberals haven’t become as nasty as some have said, but recently, one of my friends asked me:

“Did you know that you have a lot of conservatives on your blogroll?” (saying it in a tone usually reserved for child molesters).

I said that I didn’t really notice.  My only real criteria for putting someone on the blogroll is either the person:

  1. Has a sense of humor.


  2. Is a woman.

So far, no one has made any comments about all the “liberals” on my blogroll.  Is it because we expect liberals to be smart, sexy, and fun blogging pals?   Why can’t a Republican be smart and sexy?  After all,  I did marry one. 

Republicans are not so bad when you get to know them (except the crazy anti-abortion ones).   Through Sophia, I learned to better understand and appreciate “Republican” culture.  They have some valid ideas on economics and international affairs. 

Now, excuse me… I want to go and replay this Pat Boone album I have playing on my iTunes —


  1. Tatyana

    Beg to differ. I do no fistfights, a lady doesn’t resolve to violence. My poisonous split tongue served me fine so far, thank you ever so much.

    Also, I’m not a member or contributor to any Party. If Libertarians produced a sane person, I’d vote big L; in the absence I voted in a principled guy and against the demagogue.

    Here’s a winning tactic my mother uses against contribution-soliciting calls. “There is a great need for increased funds” – Yes, I’m sure. -” Every dime counts” – I know! – “Even small contribution will make a big difference” – Couldn’t agree more. I’lll give you my mailing address, so you could send me your contribution”.

  2. sunshine

    I think I know what you mean. I am a Democrat, and some of the hottest sex I ever had was with Republicans.

    Always Republicans. Don’t know why. Hmmm….

  3. brando

    egad! i just noticed i’m on your blogroll, which must mean one thing: i’m a woman. what’s weird is that the liberals keep calling me, too, always asking me when i’m getting home and what do i want for dinner and why do i drink so much and ‘Who’s Samantha?’ Damn politicians. Won’t leave us women alone.

  4. bella

    Wait – we only get two choices? Democrat or Republican? What happend to Tories? Or the Green party? Can I pick another one?

  5. Bad Maria

    I am registered as independent, I have married two registered republicans, both are socially liberal, I could be considered libertarian in my staunch belief in non-governmented individual rights – it’s all a crap shoot really and I’m betting red….or would that be roulette, ah, f*&k it, let’s go to Vegas where the HOUSE always wins….

  6. ekramer

    when someone from the democratic party wants me to sign something i say i am a
    republican and when the republican wants
    me to sign something i say if am a registered democrat if someone calls me
    i say i cannt talk now but give me your number and i will call you back and then
    hang up.

  7. TWM

    Hmmm, I’m not a Republican having never registered with any political party, but I am conservative as you know.

    Now I am not particularly funny so that must mean I am, errr, let me check, nope, I am a man.

    You must be slipping.

  8. Eternal Ramblings

    Democrats are sexy – Have you ever heard of a great piece of elephant?

  9. M.A.

    I think that in their purest form, both parties are very compelling. I respect the ways that conservative (the old school kind)republicans are not quick to spend money and question all kinds of things that go on in the government. I respect how democrats want to use the government to help the traditionally disenfranchised and underrepresented. But unfortunately, the parties are run by superfallible humans who put their own personal agendas and political marketability above each party’s core beliefs.

    The republican religious right’s rhetoric makes me wildly uncomfortable, and the blowhards in the democratic party make me want to ring my hands.

  10. Tatyana

    Neil, can you read this? I heard LA is in the dark (I mean, the screens went dark)?

  11. Jay

    I think those are excellent criteria. Now all I need is to remember my password, and I’ll be all set!

  12. JJ MacMillan

    I was a Republican for most of my life. I left the party when I saw what they were doing to Clinton. It wasn’t a party anymore, it was a pack of wild dogs.

    I was a pro-choice, anti-discrimination Republican that believed the Democrats had a right to be heard. After a while, I realized that meant I was a Democrat.

  13. Missy

    Personally, I think all Republicans need to get laid at least three times a week so all that “common-sense” can be shaken out of their heads.

    Too much common sense for anyone’s good, really.

  14. Neil

    Eternal, on the which party is sexier question — you right that I’ve never heard of a great piece of “elephant.” Unfortunately, which party has the bigger trunk?

  15. Nancy French


    Republicans have more satisfying sex lives than Dems:

    Plus, I KNEW there was a reason why Sophia was so awesome! She just looks smart, and now we know that she is. A Republican — yippee!

  16. Neil

    Nancy, I read that “survey.” Do you think that maybe less Republican women “fake their orgasms” because they’re just not creative enough to do it? Or is it possible — just asking — that the reason is due to the skill of their Democratic husbands?

  17. The Retropolitan

    Wait — are you saying that republicans are actually human?


    Since I live in New York, I don’t know all that many ‘proper’ republicans — some conservative democrats, maybe, or socially-liberal republicans — but I have yet to meet any repubs that actually kill and eat leftist babies. That’s what they do, right?

  18. Tara

    I’m so sending that photo to my mother who just had a fight with her republican husband, lol.

  19. JJ MacMillan

    The reason their sex lives are more satsifying, obviously, is that they’ve lowered their standards.

  20. Neil

    Or all those tax breaks just make Republicans horny.

  21. Michael

    That’s my criteria for discussing politics. Have a sense of humor about it — most of it’s inherently funny… or at least be a hot chick. I’m not sure if Hillary Clinton qualifies for either criterion.

  22. jamy

    I recently dated a Republican but I didn’t find out until our second date. The first night I met him, we sat for three hours in his car waiting for a tow truck for mine. We’d been talking for a couple of hours before that. The entire time, politics never came up. It was a bit of a shock the next time I met him to find he was a Rebuplican, what with me being a socialist and all (I usually vote Democratic). That is how I learned I could date a Republican. He was not a raving, religious right, anti-abortion lunatic, though. He thought Bush was better for national security. I stronly disagreed, but it wasn’t a deal breaker.

  23. Michael Blowhard

    My problem politically is that I agree with 99% of the criticisms the Dems make of the Repubs, and 99% of the criticisms the Repubs make of the Dems. They’re both right! Which means that they’re both wrong …

  24. jenny

    i could screw a republican-no strings. but marry one? it would be too complicated.

  25. justin

    I have a lot of redneck friends back in NC that would love to be on your blogroll. Of course they have no idea what that means. But if I write it down for them and draw a picture, they might laugh and shoot guns up in the air or something.

  26. modigli

    I hate talking politics. But, OMG!, I’ll say that I think you must have gone to summer camp at the same place from the movie Dirty Dancing!!! Did you ever meet “Baby” when you were up in the Catskills?

  27. Neil

    Mo – Yeah, I knew Baby. She rejected me to sleep with that hunky non-Jewish dance instructor.

  28. lizriz

    That poster art is a piss! 🙂

  29. Jack

    I am an independent. Both parties have disappointed me.

  30. Jamie Dawn

    Great post. It’s good to be able to laugh at both sides no matter which party you most agree with.
    I’m definitely leaning towards Sophia’s way of thinking… We smart, sexy Republican women have gotta stick together.

  31. Tatyana

    Boy, I am really slow. Jesse Jackson and Michael Moore share a love pad on UWS? [a true devotion to Party on Mr.Jackson’s part, I’m sure]
    The most interesting morsels always escape me…

  32. Mirty

    I went to Columbia too. Well, Barnard. It’s taken me 25 years to edge towards the Republican side… I’m middle of the road now. Both sides use really dumb scare tactics. I think we need to get Karl Rove and Michael Moore together for a Texas Smack-Down style fight.

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