Quite a bit of commentary has been offered this most recently passed election season, on how the Romney/Ryan campaign targeted white people, middle-aged/elderly, white, christian males in particular. The Republican/Tea Party has come to be defined as the party of old, white, christian males, with some of their wives as stragglers. Perhaps, they might want to re-think that strategy.
Please bear with me, as I continue, past the orange squiggly thing. What the hell is that, anyway? I apologize in advance, for the length of the following, feel free to take commercial breaks.
Ok, made it down here safely, hope some of you did as well.
a note: The comments/opinions expressed here are mine alone. I'm not pretentious enough to assume I speak or opine for anyone other than myself. Well done snark in the comments is always appreciated. If it's really good, I may steal it for future use, that's a risk you run. I will, however, attempt to remember proper attribution. If royalties are involved, I want half.
A bit of background - I am (obviously, or I wouldn't be writing this) white, male, catholic/jewish (don't ask!), college educated, a cpa and 57 years old. I'm married to a wonderful, extremely tolerant (hey, she hasn't shot me yet!), very smart woman, and the father of two great, also very smart children. I specialize in tax law, and have been working in the field since I was in college. I truly enjoy my work, as I find it intellectually challenging, and I get to meet a lot of very interesting, very smart people along the way. I'm also the house and office computer geek: one of my hobbies is building my own PC's, and I maintain the home wireless network. I also teach computer and Federal Tax Law classes. Can't get much geekier than that. I fish as well, which I find very relaxing. I'm a Marine brat, born in Quantico Naval Hospital, Quantico MCB. While we didn't get transferred a lot (Dad's MOS kept us from being bounced every couple of years, unlike many of my peers), I have lived my life, so far, from NY to NC.
I am the exact mid-point of the famous "Baby Boom" generation, born in 1955. This is critical to what follows.
As a member of the white, male, etc. group, I'm part of the target audience that the Republican/Tea Party focused so heavily on, and considers its base. Ann & Mitt called me regularly, extolling the candidate's virtues, and asking for my vote. I was thrilled, and kind of creeped out. I've never had two sociopaths spend that much time on me before. With luck, I won't ever again. No doubt, it came as a shock to them, when I voted to re-elect Pres. Obama, for a second term. I now feel the need to explain myself, as they probably consider me a traitor to my race/gender/class (did I mention that I make 6 figures?). Here's where that whole "Catholic/Jewish" thing comes in. I was raised with shame & guilt. Normally, there's not much you can do, to exceed what I've already been through. But, since Ann & Mitt were kind enough to spend so much of their scarce time on me, I feel compelled to explain myself to them. I'll probably need counseling later. After reading this, you might need counseling as well, mabye we can get a group rate. Remember, only goy pay retail!
The world I grew up in is quite different than that of even just the generation right before mine. When I was born, there was no man-made debris in outer space, by the time I was 15, there was an American flag planted on the Moon. When I was born, most women were married, with children, and being housewives, by their early 20's, and women/minorities were routinely, legally discriminated against. By my 15th birthday, women and minorities were demanding that their civil rights, under the Constitution, actually be recognized by society. Legislation, pushed in Congress, and signed into law by LBJ, made it a federal offense to ignore them. By my 15th year, the country realized it had been constantly lied to, by its government, about the war raging in Vietnam, they were not pleased. During my 19th year, Nixon became the country's first president forced to resign. I grew up during one of the most turbulent era's in American history.
The world I was born in, and the world that existed when I was 15, were almost polar opposites. My mom always worked outside the house, that was my normal. It came as a shock, when I realized it wasn't considered the norm for the rest of the country. I just accepted, again as my normal, that everyone had exactly the same rights under the law, because in the military, they did. Again, I was stunned to discover such was not the necessarily the case in the civilian world. In short, the world (and home) I was raised in, was one where success was based on actual achievement, and gender/race had little to do with it. A bit naive, perhaps, but that's how it was.
Which brings me to my main point, and why I'm such a disappointment to Ann, Mitt, Karl & Rush. Based on my life experience, I should be a prime catch for the Republican/Tea Party. Alas, no. The GOP platform, and the candidates supporting this platform, not only don't appeal to me, I am appalled by them. I find most Republican/Tea Party candidates, and their supporters, to be odious, that they've raised to the level of an art form. Their platform/agenda is bad enough, add the constant stream of flagrant lies and half-truths in support of it, and you have a trifecta of reasons I could never vote for, or support any of them.
As an accountant, I use math every day. I minored in Economics, so I have a pretty good working knowledge of the basics. The Republican/Tea Party stand on social issues is sufficiently horrible by itself, but they compounded the offense by insulting me professionally as well; it doesn't actually require that you be an accountant/economist, to recognize the proposed "Ryan Budget", as nothing more than a poorly done rehash, of the infamous Reagan Platform, circa 1980. It made no sense mathematically then, it doesn't today. I take it as a professional insult, that they think I'm so bad at what I do, that I would buy into it. I didn't in 1980, nothing's changed, that would cause me to buy into it today.
Again, I speak for no one but myself. However, I have a lot of friends, who are my race/age/gender/education peers. Most of them feel the same way about the Repubican/Tea Party as I do. Most of them, to Ann, Mitt, Karl & Rush's great surprise, also voted to re-elect Pres. Obama. You see, we are all a bunch of socialists, who support public education, enjoy driving on good, well maintained roads, believe that our wives/daughters/moms/nieces are perfectly capable of thinking for themselves, and support the concept of people being able, without interference, to marry those whom they love, regardless of gender. Clearly, we are all destined for hell. I plan on enjoying the ride.
I realize I (and lots of my peers) am a huge disappoint to the GOP. I will reach deep within myself, and somehow drag out the will to carry on. I'll do so without the GOP, and the ignorant, ill-informed social/technical luddites, that constitute its base.