I have had plenty of moments where I have criticized President Obama on this site and others for being, in a nutshell, "not liberal/progressive enough". I was one of a cadre of small but sometimes loud voters who were clamoring for someone such as Bernie Sanders to declare a primary challenge to the President from the left, because I felt our interests were being somewhere between ignored to quashed, either in the name of "bipartisanship" or out of some apparent desire to actually not pursue things we wanted when we voted for "Hope and Change" in 2008.
The more radical, malevolent, and patently Un-American the Republican Party has become, however, I have had my resolve to not only vote for Barack Obama again strengthened, but also challenge others to cast their ballots for him as well.
Today I read a piece that I think helps exemplify how I have felt, and how I believe others need to feel, and why anyone thinking at this late game of not supporting the President is set to deliver a very unpleasant if not "evil" hand to the country.
Stop me if you've heard about purity trolls before. But that's not why I'm writing now.
Although I myself have certainly felt like voting "For the (candidate)" versus "For the Party", to read the words I read today provided I suppose a rather succinct reminder of what it means to actually vote for "The Party".
Mr. Wills takes to task Roberto Ungar, a former Harvard professor of Obama's, who apparently is making news for saying that Obama should be defeated for not being progressive enough. Wills even concedes that side-by-side, Barack Obama would not be nearly that great of a progressive next to his former teacher.
But in case anyone still had any doubts about why it is important to vote for Barack Obama, he offers the following:
To vote for a Democrat means, now, to vote for the party’s influential members—for unions (including public unions of teachers, firemen, and policemen), for black and Latino minorities, for independent women. These will none of them get their way, exactly; but they will get more of a hearing and attention—“pandering,” if you want to call it that—than they would get in a Republican administration.In other words, if you belong to, or care about anyone belonging to any of those subsets of voters, voting for the Party that has (albeit not perfectly) stood up for them repeatedly is also in your best interest.
As a white male, I'll never know nor will I pretend to know what it's like to be Black or Latino in America. But I believe that everyone deserves equal opportunity under the law, and like the late Dr. King, that everyone should be judged on "content of character" not "color of skin". The Republican Party has made it clear with bills like SB-1070 in Arizona, with Mitt Romney's self-deportation folly, and Steve King's Muslim-witch-hunting hearings that they intend to profile all Americans to death unless you fit their mold.
To vote for a Republican means, now, to vote for a plutocracy that depends for its support on anti-government forces like the tea party, Southern racists, religious fanatics, and war investors in the military-industrial complex. It does no good to say that “Romney is a good man, not a racist.” That may be true, but he needs a racist South as part of his essential support. And the price they will demand of him comes down to things like Supreme Court appointments. (The Republicans have been more realistic than the Democrats in seeing that presidential elections are really for control of the courts.)That's arguably the most concise summation of the current Republican Party I've seen in a while. The base is full of conspiracy theory anti-government (For you, but not For them), implicitly to explicitly racist Southern whites, religious zealots who are all convinced that they and they alone are "right" and we're all "wrong", and the warmongering profiteers from whom the suffering of real military families is never felt, because they never experience the war themselves, they just profit from it.
Wills continues on about "high minded" so-called "Independents" who think that not choosing a party even though there are very stark differences between them is somehow honorable, and how people who think we can change the entire system by burning it down and rising from the ashes will really leave us with only the ashes...I think the whole piece is a good read.
But more importantly than that, if anyone on this website or others who voted for Obama before, or doesn't already full-throatedly support the Decimate America plan put forth by Paul Ryan and endorsed by Mitt Romney still isn't sure of how or why they should give Barack Obama another 4 years...I am hoping that words as frank and clear as these, among others, can help put things in perspective for you.
No, this doesn't mean "every" Democrat is always good...and yes, we here should strive to replace bad Democrats with good or great ones at all times. This isn't meant to start any pie fights between "More and Better" / "Just Better" crowds (if they even still exist as such).
I've been disappointed with Obama a lot in 3 years, but I've seen a lot of good too. And more over, I have seen just how little the opposition thinks of everyone who isn't just like they are. Whether it's legitimate political belief or jaded political cynicism that keeps most Republicans from working for the majority of the country versus the Grover Norquists and Tony Perkins', it doesn't really matter.
I believe the only party right now that's going to fight for the most rights for the most citizens is the Democratic Party. If you do too, you've got to agree that voting for Barack Obama a 2nd time is the only choice.
...I'm going to guess most of you already knew that. But in case you weren't sure, hopefully you are now!