I am only kidding; I could never leave Saratoga Springs or my team at Saratoga TODAY. However I have been told on numerous occasions that I should run for office. So, for the fun of it I sat down with a panel of reporters for a hard-hitting interview to tackle some of America’s toughest issues.
Let me know if you think I have what it takes.
Q. Mr. Beatty, you are very vocal in your opinions and view of America. What are your reasons for running?
A. Well George, first I want to thank you, your fellow reporters, and my fellow Americans for this opportunity. We live in the greatest nation on earth and this is an honor. Next question?
Q. What are the biggest threats facing America today?
A. Without a doubt, the biggest threat today and in the foreseeable future, is radical Islam. These people live by an ideology that most Americans can’t comprehend. They have been fighting a jihad (holy war) for thousands of years and they are not going to stop until it is over; and ‘‘over” means that non-believers have either been converted or eliminated. I want everyone to understand that the hatred is not only directed toward Christians and Jews. These people are just as cruel and vicious to their own people. And don’t think that females get a free pass. For a female living in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, etc., life can be a very grim existence. I feel tremendous sympathy for the majority of peace-loving Muslims living in these countries.
Q. How do you feel the Affordable Care Act has influenced healthcare?
A. You mean Obamacare? What a mess. It has personally hit me in the pocket. My healthcare plan, which I liked, was cancelled. Now, for example, my co-pay for a visit to the physical therapist has increased from $4 to $60. What happened to Obama’s promise “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep it”?
Q. Taxes are a big, and controversial, issue. Do you feel the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes?
A. I suppose it depends on your definition of fair. If the tax rate is flat and you earn twice as much as me, you would pay twice as much as me in taxes. I think that sounds fair. As for the ultra-wealthy, many argue that they should pay much higher tax rates. While I do feel that the ultra-wealthy, as well as all of us, should give back to humanity and engage in philanthropic endeavors, I feel it is up to the individual, not the state, to decide where their money is spent. I know that the majority of all non-profit support in our community already comes from the wealthy, and that is how it should be. On a national level, the top 5 percent of wage earners pays 70 percent of the nation’s federal income taxes.
Q. Gay marriage?
A. Hmm, this is a tough one. My religious beliefs say that marriage is between a man and a woman, but I have no problem with another term for same-sex unions. And, they should receive all the same benefits as heterosexual couples. As far as the sexual relationship between same sex couples, it’s not my thing. Do I think it is a sin? You know what, “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” I am certainly in no position to condemn anyone.
Q. While we are on a moral subject, what are your thoughts on women’s right to choose?
A. I assume you mean abortion. It is a horrible fact of life. The killing of an innocent, unborn child is never morally positive. In today’s society, it seems like we devalue virginity, modesty, sexual relations and human life. My hope would be that women, and girls, value their body more from the beginning and this wouldn’t be such an issue. And, for unplanned pregnancies, adoption is a wonderful decision that brings hope and love to thousands of families a year.
Q. With the number of recent shootings, do you think the laws on gun control need to be expanded or tougher?
A. The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution protects the right of individuals to keep and bear arms. But, like anything else, we need common-sense laws and guidelines. I feel that tougher guidelines regarding background checks, mental health, and waiting periods would be a good thing. Cuomo’s rushed approach to magazine capacity limits and assault weapon bans is a perfect example of how NOT to handle the process.
Q. There seems to be a humanitarian dilemma on the border. How would you handle this?
A. The borders need to be locked down until we get a handle on this situation and understand the magnitude of the problem. Guess what: unless you were a Native American, we were all immigrants a few centuries ago. Legal immigration is what created this great nation. I am 100 percent for legal immigration. I am 100 percent against illegal immigration. Right now we can’t handle our own poverty, crime and addiction issues. The last thing we need is a flood of criminals and terrorists crossing our borders. I am not saying that people crossing the borders are criminals or terrorists, but unless we are in control of the process, we have no idea. If I become your elected official, part of my job, a big part, is to keep you and your family safe, and I feel it begins with our borders.
Q. I would like to hear your views on the military, funding, benefits, the VA, etc.
A. A strong military is the backbone of a free society. They need to be properly funded and taken care of post deployment. Why is it so easy for someone who has never worked a day in his or her life to receive welfare benefits, but a soldier who had his leg blown off in battle has to struggle to get care? This is an embarrassment to the United States. And, I’d like to suggest relocating some of our military bases to the border. We keep our troops on the front lines all over the globe; how about we keep them on the front lines at home? Bottom line is, I have the utmost respect for our men and women in uniform. I want to see them well trained, well staffed, and well taken care of.
Q. Alright, final question: Women in the workplace. How do we break through the glass ceiling?
A. I don’t see a glass ceiling anymore. Some of today’s most powerful people are women. In entertainment we have Oprah. In politics we have Hillary. In the world of music you have Madonna, who pulled in $125 million last year, making her music’s top earner of any gender and the highest-paid celebrity.
If we look at the world of business, female CEO’s are running General Motors, IBM, Pepsi, DuPont, Lockheed Martin, Hewlett Packard and Yahoo, to name a few. Looking simply at numbers is deceiving. You must realize that many women choose to stay home and raise a family. It doesn’t mean that doors were shut on them. It means they made a choice to give their all to raising their children and running their household. I don’t think there is any more important job than that.
Thank you for your time everyone and God Bless America.