Monday, November 12, 2012

Evolve or become irrelevant

A followup to my blog the day after the election, will the GOP wake up now?, where I noted how extreme Republicans have become, so much so that people like Dick Lugar aren't welcomed in it anymore:

There are so many topics that I cannot understand for the life of me why they have been branded left-wing. All of the following should never have become politicized in the sense of one party saying such is "good" and the other saying such are "evil socialist plots." These are the kind of topics that everyone except the most extremist among us should be supporting, in principle (I understand approaches can vary):
  • science 
  • fossils 
  • bicycling 
  • solar power 
  • the right to choose an abortion OR to carry a pregnancy to term without the government interfering in either of those choices 
  • birth control use and access
  • public school funding and the vital importance of quality public education
  • public university funding
  • wanting clean air and water for *everyone*
  • growing food in your yard
  • climate change is happening and is exacerbated by human activities
  • access to affordable, basic health care, particularly preventive care
  • Pell grants
  • equal pay for equal work
  • consenting adults having sex
  • adults forming families
  • social security
I get why various aspects of foreign policy, labor relations, trade, how to structure social security and taxation are politicized, I do. But the aforementioned? I don't get it at all. Being against those things is... well, it's ridiculous. Really, it goes against what the GOP says it's about. How can you be the party that is against government interference, but want the government to decide when a woman should or should not carry a pregnancy to term? Or want the government decide which adults may, and may not, get married and form families? How can you be the party of personal responsibility but think access to affordable, basic health care, particularly preventive care is socialism? How can you be the party of business and innovation and be against SCIENCE?!?

Ben Stein was on CBS This Morning last Sunday, was doubling down on the Republican Party stance, saying it's just that the Republicans need to do a better job of selling their "values" to Latinos, blacks and women in order to get back in power. You would think the extremists in his party calling him too "moderate" would have gotten his attention, but, apparently, he still doesn't get it. So let me try:

Dude, you are never, ever going to convince women that they should allow the government to limit their access to birth control or abortion. Never. You are never going to convince women that the government shouldn't be working to ensure equal pay for equal work. Never. You are never going to convince women to support a party where your rock stars call them "sluts." Never. You are never going to convince most 20 and 30 somethings that they should stop caring about the environment, stop supporting gay marriage and stop taking Pell grants. Ever. You are never going to get back into the White House if you stay so freakin' anti-science, denying the age and origin of fossils, plate tectonics, and evolutionary biology - and saying things like "legitimate rape" doesn't cause pregnancy, or that pregnancy resulting from rape is actually a "gift from God."

I dig your rhetoric about personal responsibility and working hard in order to get wealth - but when I see massive tax breaks for extremely rich people and companies that are making record-breaking profits, when I see CEOs getting payoffs for leaving a company while the pensions of the rank and file are called "excessive", when I see that the number one reason for personal bankruptcy in the USA is health care costs, it's really hard for me - and millions of other voters - to take your rhetoric seriously. You need to be walking your talk. 

Republicans, you can be conservative without being stupid. Read up on Eisenhower, at the very least. Try some Barry Goldwater as well.  

Moderate Republicans - you have just got to be out there, surely. Take your party back! Talk about how you do support science, you do not believe that President Obama is a Muslim nor a socialist, you believe the government should stay out of bedrooms and women's medical decisions, and you want to see public schools succeed - and then offer fiscally-conservative ideas about taxation and conservative ideas about foreign policy (which would lead to LESS wars, not more of them).   

Also see white guy Eric Garland's excellent letter-to-a-future-republican-strategist-regarding-white-people.

No comments:

Post a Comment