I live in a very red district in Georgia and as such, I've more or less become resigned to the fact that my representative is going to hold a radically different viewpoint than my own. But watching this shutdown, I can't just wait for the next election and vote for a democrat again knowing that my vote will be effectively meaningless in this ridiculously gerrymandered republican district. As such, I've sent the following to my Representative (Tom Price of Georgia's sixth congressional district) informing him that unless he votes on a clean resolution to end this shutdown, I will donate both my time and money to ANY candidate, democrat or republican who will run against him for as many elections as it takes to remove him from office.
I may not expect my representative to agree with my views, but I do expect him (or her) to at least do their job. And that job doesn't include shutting down the government they were elected to serve.
Sarah Palin and the others on the right who used intimidation and violent speech will not apologize for it. They won't even mention it. If they don't mention it, it doesn't exist and therefore they did nothing wrong. If pushed about being responsible for creating a climate of violence and hate, they'll blame the shooter saying that he's the lunatic, it's all his fault. How could they possibly have any responsibility for the actions of a madman? The left will clamor about it for a while but nothing will actually get done about it and most folks will forget about it after a while.
Commentators and politicians on both sides will avoid violent imagery for about a month. After that, first folks on the far fringes will start it up again and then it will gradually move more mainstream. If called on it, they'll say that of course they didn't mean it like that.
President Obama will neglect the opportunity to say that he's been asking for people to tone down the rhetoric and vitriol for some time and now he's renewing that same call. Despite this being a chance to get folks to actually do their jobs and talk to each other (even if only for a little while), partisanship will continue on without a hiccup other than in photo-op newsbites saying "of course we're horrified by this".
I know it's fun mocking the Republicans for Scozzafava'ing their own, for having loyalty oaths and requirements for meeting at least 8 out of 10 core principles. But let us be honest with ourselves... aren't we out to do the same thing?
We talk a lot about Palin, Huckabee, Romney, and a handful of others as likely Republican candidates for the 2012 Presidential campaign but I think we're missing the target... Sonny Perdue, the current Governor of Georgia.
Since the "boycott" began, I've seen a lot of people say that we (the gay community) are being unreasonable and need to be patient. That there are a lot of important issues out there like health care reform, Iraq and Afghanistan, the economy, and so on that need to be addressed first. That 2010 is coming up fast and the mid-term elections are important... that making LBGT civil rights an issue now only helps the Republicans. So how long are we supposed to wait? How long are we supposed to be 2nd tier citizens in our own party let alone country? How long should we remain silent until it is a convenient time for the party and the nation to decide that they can throw us a bone so we'll continue to open our wallets to the Democrats while we hope and pray and donate and vote so that things will get better?
And before you answer those questions, consider where we've come from and how long we've been working for this...
Once upon a time, long long ago, way back in 2008 I remember hanging out here at DK and over and over I read something similar to this: "first we work to elect Democrats, then we work to elect better Democrats."
It's only been a year but it seems that we've forgotten the plan. Or should I take it that folks here complaining about the "boycott" are O.K. with Democrats that are anti-choice, threatening to filibuster HCR, and against marriage equality among other things?
I want equal marriage. Heck I even want it bad. But I have come to believe that having watched the referendums in Washington (civil union) and Maine (marriage) that this just isn't the time to fight for marriage, no matter how "back of the bus" it is.
I grew up Catholic but haven't called myself one in decades. But I still remember the sacraments. I don't know whether this is something practiced in other Christian faiths but to a Catholic, the sacraments are pretty much what keeps you out of hell. Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and... Marriage. As long as we're fighting for that word the Church is going to fight tooth and nail to stop us. This is the same Catholic church that just opened its doors to Anglicans to come back to Father Church to get away from those icky homosexual lovers.
For all the talk here of "permanent Democratic majority" and the "GOP civil war", you'd think that Republicans are done for and the Democrats are the reigning party for at least a generation and a new dawn has come to America. Please, just stop it.
According to the Daily Kos Electoral Scoreboard as of the time of my writing this, over 57 million people voted for McCain. Democrats won by less than 8 million votes. With arguably one of the strongest Democratic candidates in the last 40 years against a Republican candidate who was unpopular with his own party and a Republican VP pick that helped revive that base at the same time as she drove away the middle, Obama won by just a bit over 5%.
Dear President-Elect Obama,
My name is Adam Schmidt and in the last couple months I've followed the Democratic convention, watched the Republican convention, and have read your book "The Audacity of Hope". I was unable to volunteer in your campaign but made donations several times, the first I've ever made to a political campaign. I not only encouraged friends and co-workers to vote for you but voted for you myself both in the primary and in the general election.
Aside from being a follower of the election and a supporter of yours, I'm also a 39 year old white gay man living in Georgia just outside of Atlanta and yet of all that I have read in your book, it is the chapter on race that has most greatly resonated with my life and my experiences. It is because of reading your perspective on race that I would like to share my own perspective on being a gay man in America.
It doesn't take Conventional Wisdom to see that the Republican Party brand is in trouble. Conservatives are facing the wrath of the faithful by jumping ship and endorsing Barack Obama and yet they do it any way. This problem is compounded by the splits in the Republican party rapidly becoming major fissures. It has been a coalition between "Evanagelical" conservatives, fiscal conservatives, and lately "Neo-Cons" who favor exporting democracy to nations of interest whether they like it or not. These three groups really have nothing in common. The evangelical's aren't really dramatically concerned with fiscal policy unless it greatly disrupts their own lives (see recent events) and care little about foreign adventurism. The fiscal conservatives have little or no interest in social policy and see foreign wars as a huge expense. And the neo-cons have no interest at all in social policy and see the fiscal conservatives as being in their way to being able to finance their military expeditions. Add to this the corporate conservatives whose world view can be wrapped up in "What's good for IBM is good for America" and it makes you wonder how they've survived as a group this long.