I Am A Democrat
By Brother Theo from The Butcher Shop, a (TLB) Contributor
Bill and Ted On hate
Are Americans As Dumb As North Koreans? When something powerful and awful takes up an existence in our lives without any apparent reason, or logical explanation, we often go out in search of an answer. Generally speaking, when we apply deductive reasoning to the facts that we gather on our quest for knowledge, we are successful in understanding what makes the new problem work, and can then begin the task of ﬁxing it.
I have identiﬁed politically as a democrat since high school, without being overly active in politics. With the exceptions of serving as precinct chairman, distributing ﬂyers, or making telephone calls, I have mostly been an average armchair party aﬃliate. I live a very normal, median lifestyle, and am moderately active in my community’s eﬀorts to be and to remain a good place to live. I am in every way a law abiding citizen, and most of the money I set aside for charity goes to police, veteran, or animal relief funds; So why do so many people hate me?
It wasn’t until I joined Facebook that I learned the true scope of a poisonous, vitriolic hate that runs deep in the veins of roughly half of the nation for anyone who identiﬁes as a democrat. I was stunned to learn that people I have never met would gladly punch my face repeatedly for not throwing confetti in the air every time president Trump or his administrative team comes up with yet another way to demonstrate that America is a ship without a helm.
I admit, before Facebook, there were clues. I was ﬁred twice during Obama’s terms for being a democrat. The persons who ﬁred me were as unpleasant as their powers of social and economic violence allowed them to be. Each of the two employers went to as much eﬀort to harm me as means allowed them, going out of their way to inﬂict as much damage on my career as possible. FYI, if you work in Texas, or Georgia, you can be ﬁred for being a democrat, and you will not receive beneﬁts.
Once, during Obama’s ﬁrst campaign I was attacked while I was riding my bicycle to the gym by two men in a pickup truck with a machete: the reason was an Obama for president campaign button pinned to my backpack. Throughout the attack both men cursed me and threatened my life. Fortunately I came to no serious harm, as they were drunk, and pretty lousy ﬁghters, even with a machete.
A second attack came just a month later when a prominent older businessman in my neighborhood ran my bicycle oﬀ the road with his Lincoln Navigator, nearly killing himself in the process. The man, in his later seventies I learned, suﬀered a heart attack as he was striking and kicking me. Although I myself was not seriously injured, the sheer hatred, and the incoherent violence of his screams and shouting shocked me to the core. This was a man I exchanged waves and pleasant small talk with from time to time. The police potentially considered the attack as provoked by my visibly worn campaign material, and they actually thought about charging me. Apparently the most heinous aspect of my behavior was that my route to the store took me past an elementary school where the eyes of small children might have been exposed to Obama propaganda.
Oh, and then there is the fact that I cannot vote early or absentee, as they have thrown my vote out once, as I voted for a democrat. After Facebook…if general life is like walking in a contained, familiar environment, Facebook is like interstate driving in a dual metro area during the worst hours of driving. My ﬁrst attempts at Facebook were like playing the game frogger. I was usually roadkill well before reaching the other side of the road. I ﬁnally got the hang of it, ﬁlling my page with such beauty, humor, comfort recipes and science as I could ﬁnd, but, alas, it was too little too late. It was my past you see. I had written many articles, posts, and shared memes, all of which, while eschewing Hillary, had a democratic slant. I quickly learned that Facebook assigns people to a certain pasturage, and nothing I posted was overlooked for a drive by smear, including pictures of family birthdays, weddings, and, well, you know.
I gave up my facebook page at the urging, no, make that the begging, of my children. Apparently my democrat identity was harmful to their careers also. So much for the ﬁrst amendment. I mean, we live with the fact that our children are hostages to fortune; it’s why companies prefer to hire people with kids, but when that cuts into your Constitutional rights, it’s time to get out the bug spray.
Nothing I have been able to unearth has given me any understanding of this mindless, ravenous hatred toward democrats. I have asked everyone I dared to ask about it, and the most frequent answer I got was “I don’t know, I just hate them.”. None of these haters has any kind of coherent explanation for their hatred, yet they feel hatred; for me.
Finally I caved in and asked my writing partner. (For you that don’t know, he is Bill pictured above on the right.) I know, I should have asked him earlier right? I get it, he’s a republican, so he should be able to answer that for me easily right? But, I didn’t want to ask him. We have been in one enterprise or another for ﬁfty years, and I didn’t want to upset an equilibrium that continuous. Turns out, I should have asked him sooner. “It’s Obama.” He said. What about Obama? I asked. His belief is that the republicans want an unspeciﬁed amount of payback for eight years of Obama.
At ﬁrst I did not understand, so I called a conservative friend of mine in South Dakota, and he unraveled this for me: from Reagan’s presidency forward, a belief was birthed in our social media ( yes, we had social media in the seventies too; remember how before sundown the day Challenger exploded the jokes that went from the east to the west coast? ) that stupid science projects, welfare queens and the like were being funded at the expense of the guy whose family was struggling upstream at two hundred dollars a week. The term “taxpayer expense” had become a description of tax expenditures borne by the low to middle class. It was a lie then, but in time it became true, as our state became a tool available exclusively to the ruling class (that’s really wealthy folks) as Joe Stalin once remarked so aptly.
As the power to rule was drained away from We The People and awarded to those people who possessed wealth and privilege, more and more of the burden of taxes fell on the poor and middle class. Hell, I have seen it people! Like you, my taxes have been raised every time the taxes on the ultra wealthy have been cut; the shortfall has to be made up by someone. Make no mistake, Romney Care and Obama Care were paid for in the main by the middle class. We had forty four million people with no health care in America, and someone had to fund a solution. Since no politician was going to even propose tax hikes on the wealthy even in the privacy of outer space, it fell to the middle class to fund a health care crisis that was dangerous and embarrassing, as they will fund infrastructure improvements, the military and, well, anything the wealthy tell the congress and the president to pass.
So here is my take: don’t hate democrats for your poverty or your helplessness. Teddy Roosevelt and his cousin Franklin knew what ailed our nation; fascism. So for a glorious few years America knew prosperity. For half of the previous century the unions made headway in raising your grandfathers wages, a condition that lasted until the Reagan presidency, when our government began the process of becoming corrupt lap dogs for the ultra rich, both Republican and Democrat. If you want to hate someone, hate yourself! I know I cannot completely forgive myself for being a Reagan campaign worker; I was so deceived by Ted Koppel and his nightly portion of lies, drivel and libel that I bought the “where’s the beef” B.S., right up until Reagan came out and said he was going to put the working man in his place. Yassuh mista Reagan!
Put memes out on social media with your own faces on them, because you too bought the lies. You listened to Rush, you listened to Glenn, admit it, you loved Dr. Laura, and you passed that poisonous drek on to your friends and family, and they in turn voted for lower and lower taxes on the only people that should be paying taxes; The stinking rich!!The end is not in sight. In 2020 we will get Biden or Trump, a sure formula for more of what is killing us in either case. So what do you say? Can we march to the gallows in some measure of respect because we’re all damn sure gonna hang together!
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