In an essay published on XOJane last week, one Brittany Tony lamented the fact that she hates to admit that she’s a Republican staffer, because of the “stigma” attached to being a Republican. You know, like not giving a fuck about poor people, thinking gay people don’t deserve the same rights as them, attacking a woman’s right to choose, and trying to make it harder for black people to vote. She simply cannot believe that the people in those groups affected by her voting choices might not think so highly of her.
Personally, yes, I think Republicans should be embarrassed to admit to being Republicans. It’s an embarrassing thing to be. When I was a kid I honestly didn’t think people actually admitted to being Republicans, because it just seemed really vulgar to be so forthcoming with one’s dislike of poor people. I was surprised to find, as I grew older, that people were not quite as embarrassed to sound like villains in a Dickens novel as I would have imagined.
But let’s parse this bullshit out, shall we?
However, my confident world came crashing down at a friend’s 24th birthday party. Between cinnamon roll shots and bites from the turkey and cheese platter, the group’s conversation turned from the latest gossip toward the concept of blowing off steam from a stressful workweek. Nothing prepared me for the reaction I received when I uttered the six words, “I work for a Republican congressman.”
My new gay acquaintance, with whom I had been chatting the whole night, abruptly cleared his throat and walked away, while the remaining party guests who heard my comment bombarded me with a series of assumptions and questions, like how could I vote for Sarah Palin, why I was in favor of global warming, and whether I considered myself a feminist even though I’m against women’s rights. In the conversation that followed, my confidence evaporated, and I was reduced back to the stringy-haired, freckle-faced kid of middle school.
I was no longer the poised, accomplished woman I was 15 minutes before. Instead, I felt like a mortified child who just got ejected from the cool kids table.
Good for him! Honestly– why the hell should he want to talk to you, Brittany, when your party is actively working to try to make it so he will never get to marry the person he loves? When they are arguing that businesses should be allowed to discriminate against him if he does? When they are still insisting that people like him shouldn’t be allowed to be Boy Scout troop leaders, because they are all probably child molesters?
All of those things actually affect his life in a much more meaningful way than being dissed at a cocktail party affects yours. I don’t care if you don’t personally have a problem with gay people or not. In fact, if you’re not a bigot, then I question your judgment here even more. Are tax breaks for the rich really so important to you that you are cool with voting and working for people who seek to make his life harder because of his sexual orientation? If so, then no–there is no reason that he should be giving you the time of day.
Also, yeah, your party is screwing us all on global warming and women’s rights. Surprise! We’re not too happy about it! This is not about ejecting you from the cool kids table, this is about your actions having consequences. Other than, you know, limiting people’s rights and destroying the environment.
Why does everyone assume that all conservatives are homosexual hating, gun-toting Tea Partiers who demand President Obama’s birth certificate?
Well, firstly, because that’s who you’re voting for. If you’re not that, it is–again–awfully strange that you would be voting Republican in the first place. There are no “moderate” Republicans anymore. Nixon would be too liberal for you people now, as would Bob Dole. Your people now? They laughed at Bob Dole when he stopped by in his little wheelchair to beg them to support an United Nations treaty to ban discrimination against disabled people. Why? Because they thought it was some kind of New World Order Agenda 21 thing that would undermine American sovereignty. They are, for lack of a better term, motherfucking nuts.
At what point did the Republican Party become classified as the rich white people party?
Well, dear, that goes back quite a while. But you might be familiar with a fella named Ronald Reagan! Does the term “Welfare Queen” mean anything to you? Ronald Reagan basically made up a whole entire fantasy about alllllllllll these black women living high on the hog by continually having babies in order to get more government checks. You know what? He was pretty much just talking about one lady who was convicted of welfare fraud. But he used that incident (welfare fraud is actually very rare) to attack the social safety net that helped millions of people out of poverty.
Reagan’s “solution” to poverty? Trickle-down economics. Cutting taxes for the rich, believing that they would then spend that money and it would trickle down to everyone. Which did not, for the record, happen–because rich people very much like to keep their money. To this day, you’ve got assholes like Louis Gohmert insisting that poor people are totally out to screw you and buying all the king crab legs with their SNAP cards. Sorry, but I’m a lot more worried about bankers screwing us then poor people. They cost us a lot more.
Oh! And not to mention your beloved Romney with his 47% schtick. That wasn’t too charming either.
As for the white people part of that? That actually goes back to Hoover, who was the first Republican to employ what would later be called the “Southern Strategy.” He was running against a Catholic, and thus started cozying up to the KKK in order to win Southern votes, because the KKK hated Catholics almost as much as they hated black people.
Then there was Goldwater’s opposition to the Civil Rights Act, Nixon’s Southern Strategy, and so on. Like even today with many prominent Republicans defending police brutality against black people, and trying to make it harder for them to vote. I mean, you don’t have to be a crazy racist to vote for a Republican, but you’re not really going to find any crazy racists who don’t vote Republican. Sorry. There’s a reason for that.
And please. Don’t point to Lincoln, OK? If the only example you can come up with of your party being on the right side of history happened 150 years ago, that doesn’t count anymore. You cannot ride on that train forever, and I can’t do anything with 150 years ago. Besides, if you’ll notice, you may have a hard time finding anyone sporting a Confederate flag these days who doesn’t vote Republican. Who you are now matters.
Are we all ignorant of the true roots of the Republican party—how we are a political group that favors laissez-faire economic policies rather than government regulation; how we support corporate tax breaks that lead to job creation in place of stronger entitlements; how we believe in equality for every American, even the Americans still within their mothers’ wombs?
None of those things work for us, sorry. Laissez-faire economic policies and tax breaks for corporations are not good things for anyone except for rich people. Do you think rich people are not rich enough right now to create jobs that pay well? Because the richest 1% in this country have 40% of the wealth in it. Can they get on that soon or do they need even more money? Exactly how much more money do you think they’re going to need before they are going to be able to create some jobs that pay a living wage? Because 14.5% of the country is living beneath the poverty line right now, and I bet you all 45 million of those people would just love some decent paying jobs so they can eat and pay rent.
Also, yeah–regulation isn’t a bad thing–we’re all pretty fond of laws that make it so you can’t put arsenic in your face cream. And no, you do not believe in equality for every American, unless you consider LGBT people to all be dang foreigners. Also we’re pretty happy with having reproductive justice for all women, not simply those who could afford to go to a different country to have a safe and legal abortion were it to become illegal here.
Tony goes on to talk about how all of her personal beliefs don’t align perfectly with what the Republican Party believes in, citing support for some gun control laws and opposition to the death penalty, and how all Republicans don’t oppose same-sex marriage, so why can’t we all just get along etc. etc. She even throws in a little story about the time she met a black Republican.
It makes no difference to me what she believes, personally–it matters what she is voting for, because that actually affects my life and the lives of those I care about. And if she is voting for things that hurt me and mine, then I don’t give a flying crap what her personal feelings are on anything whatsoever. Existence precedes essence, actions speak louder than words. For someone who makes a big display of how “into” politics she is, it appears that she has never realized that her decisions at the voting booth can affect peoples lives in dreadful ways. Not just “made up” ways like “death panels” and such.
I am getting really tired with this Republican whining about how it’s not fair that they’re not “cool,” and how the mean liberals hoard all the coolness from them or whatever. Enough already. Those of us who are negatively affected by the laws your party supports have much bigger problems than worrying about who gets to be the Fonz.