I was raised a Democrat. With that, I was also raised to harbor certain suspicions and wariness toward anything red.
Even more important to me, though, is the fact that I was raised to appreciate, participate in and respect democracy. Part of democracy is having an informed electorate. Part of democracy is allowing everyone the chance to express her voice.
Part of democracy is open discussions of ideas.
And that is where I have the biggest problems with the current Republican party. Deep down, somewhere in that party, there are legitimate opinions on issues. There are legitimate ideas about the economy. About international diplomacy. About education. There are. I believe that because I can’t believe that any American would purposefully and willfully wish to destroy our nation and its people. I may not agree with them, but I certainly respect the right to have them.
The problem is that we saw none of those ideas. None.
What we were treated to was a vitriolic smear campaign fueled by hate.
The entire basis for your party’s platform cannot be
- hatred for a black President (Google the difference between the electoral map and the slave vs. free state map of the Civil War. You might find there is none.);
- hatred for women (see Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin–the “rape guys”);
- hatred for Latinos (see: self-deportation);
- hatred for gays (the list is too long, but I would say start with DOMA, and yes, I know Clinton signed it);
- hatred for Muslims (take a look at the treatment of and perceptions of some Middle Eastern leaders, of the term jihad);
- hatred for the poor (start with the 47% video);
- hatred for the elderly (read up on Republican MediCare policy)
The one truth that was told during this campaign by Republicans was in reference to the “trickle down” effect. You guys nailed that one. Your hate started at the top and trickled down to reach a huge number of Americans.
And guess what? They all went out to vote.
Hate is simply not sustainable as a political platform. Because, eventually, those you hate will become angry. And as you continue and continue to expand the boundaries of your hatred, you’re handing the “other guy” a built-in electorate.
Eventually, that 47%–or is it 51% now?–is going to get their chance. And that chance came Tuesday.