I grew up in the woods and mountains of the North West United States, in a very small town where a mans word was his most important asset. This was during simpler times, when people did not worry about the difference in writing 'his' instead of 'his/hers', before political correctness caused us to spend too much time worrying about the shape of the words we write rather than the meaning of them. I was raised to value the land and respect it, and I have a deep understanding that we are tied to it. Harming the land harms us too, it just might not be obvious at first. I was also raised to believe that men and women are two halves of the same coin, and that each has equal but different strengths and weaknesses, and in the right relationship the two can be far more than the sum of the pieces. This does not need to be a romantic relationship, it could be a working relationship, community relationship, or any other. I believe intelligence is less important than wisdom, because what good is it to have the power to think if we cannot effectively use the conclusions we draw? I also believe in collaboration, and that an idea should be examined from as many perspectives as possible within the available time. Perspective is everything. I believe in privacy and accountability, and that these are not mutually exclusive ideas. I have seen no evidence that to have security one must first sacrifice freedom and privacy, but I have seen endless evidence that those sacrifices instead lead to the very opposite. There is a reason that 'free' and 'thought' are often used together. As far as race, color, sex, religion, and all things that are often used as methods of discrimination are concerned, I wonder just how much thought goes into such a thing. Weren't we taught as children to use colors to draw images with, images that would be far less without diversity? What happened, that some should forget those lessons? In the end you cannot draw a picture with only one color, there has to be some level of contrast or the concept gets lost in the background noise.