Good morning and a happy Mother's Day to all you Kossacks out there. Today is the day we pause to sing the flowery praises of the women who brought us into this world. Today we brunch and visit and put politics aside...
...well, for the purposes of this blog, that last part is not going to happen. Instead, I'd like to smash the Mommy Party myth. I'm quite frankly sick of the Democratic Party being referred to as the Mommy Party and being accused of trying to build a "Nanny State."
Because the reality is it's the other way around. For context, I'll need a little help from my friend Pink:
In this edition of Soundpolitic Sundays, I'll prove, below the fold, why this brick in the wall was put there by the Republicans.
For those who were unable to see the video and are unfortunate enough to be unfamiliar with Pink Floyd's song "Mother" from their 1979 double-LP masterpiece The Wall, here are the lyrics to the first half, prior to David Gilmour's soaring guitar solo:
Mother do you think they'll drop the bomb?
Mother do you think they'll like this song?
Mother do you think they'll try to break my balls?
Oooh ah, Mother should I build a wall?
Mother should I run for president?
Mother should I trust the government?
Mother will they put me in the firing line?
Oooh ah, is it just a waste of time?
Hush now baby, baby don't you cry.
Mama's gonna make all of your
Nightmares come true
Mama's gonna put all of her fears into you
Mama's gonna keep you right here
Under her wing
She won't let you fly
But she might let you sing
Mama will keep baby cozy and warm
Oooh Babe Oooh Babe Oooh Babe
Of course Mama's gonna help build the wall.
Now consider the two voices present in the lyrics. Your top stanzas are questions of the story's protagonist, a boy who apparently needs guidance in this crazed world. Below, you have the reassurance of the authority figure, the boy's mother, pledging to help him.
But does any of that seem reassuring to you? It doesn't to me. "Make all your nightmares come true? Put all her fears into you?" That wouldn't help me sleep at night, and it probably wouldn't help my sheets stay dry...
But all too often, that's exactly what the real Mommy Party, the Republican Party, has been doing for decades.
Think of it. The Republicans and their talk radio bullhorned buffoons constantly hammer that it is us Democrats treating our citizens like children, supposedly taking away our freedoms due to the government intrustion of keeping us all cozy and warm. You heard lots of this during the health care reform debate, certainly. But it's by no means new.
And by no means is it accurate.
We Democrats are more of the family party. This is more accurate when considering my situation. I refer to myself as a victim of the recession. I've been out of work and haven't been able to find a job since January of 2009. And if it weren't for my mother, I'd likely be out on the street, likely resorting to petit larcency to keep myself alive.
But because I'm blessed with a generous mother, I'm able to stay off the streets as I continue to search for employment. I'm not fearful for starvation or street criminals and what not. I'm safe because, even if it's not right a 26-year-old shouldn't be working, it's also not right for one's family to abandon their flesh and blood.
That's what we are as Americans. Flesh and blood.
We Democrats don't want a "Nanny State" where everyone is taken care of, head to toe. We simply want a society that operates in recognition that not every vessel sails smoothly and that there should be a port to pull into if seas get too stormy. Not everyone is as fortunate as I am this Mother's Day. Many who've lost their jobs in this recession may have lost their mother, or perhaps they haven't, but there's simply no room to take their son or daughter back in.
The worst case scenario for me is that there is room and finacnes to help a child who's down, but the mother refuses. This is the characterization I'd give the Mother in the Pink Floyd tune. Though she pledges to keep her son safe and under her wing, look at what else she promises, particularly her offer to help build "a wall" between him and his fears.
Which of the two parties puts fear into the heart of the electorate?
Which of the two parties would like to see our nightmares come true for their political advantage?
Which of the two parties want to build a wall down on the southern border?
Which of the two parties would tell their child not to trust the government?
And, for goodness sake, which of the two parties has been breaking our balls since Nixon?
You got it. The Republican Party. The real Mommy party. The bad Mommy party.
We Democrats want to see the nation function as an entire loving family, with both the mother and father balancing their roles to raise productive members of society and keep them protected even when times get tough. We want to instill people with dreams of what they can achieve and the hope that they will prevail when the dream seem to be dying.
The Republicans would have you believe that they will drop the bomb any second, that we are already in the firing line, and that all of our efforts to make this nation progressively better is a waste of time. They tell us that there's a wall of separation between the people and the state, and that the latter exists at the expense of the former, and not for better.
We know the truth. We know that there is no logical way to separate the people from the government in a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. That is the path of reason, of no fear, of the freedom to choose and the opportunity to bounce back.
It's the path of the Democratic Party.
So this Mother's Day, I'm glad my Mommy is a Democrat. Don't forget to thank your mother for being a Democrat today...instead of a member of the Mother Should I Trust The Government Party!
That's all for this edition of Soundpolitic Sundays. Thanks for reading and tune in next week for more music and politics, and until then may you, and all beings, be free from suffering.