I warned you there might be a political rant or two coming in the near future. Last week a few folks really got me going, not because we had an honest disagreement about fake news or the insane dictator’s last tweet. This was far more personal and I believe dangerous for our collective futures.
Most of you have probably experienced the new conservative taunt calling us snowflakes or saying we still need to get over this election and stop throwing our temper tantrums. Whatever. I don’t need to tell most of the readers here that we’re marching and protesting for the very soul and survival of our country. So, it was a complete shock to me when a friend (says she’s libertarian, but that’s just a republican afraid to admit they are, right?) starts a discussion about the current SCOTUS pick. She says, c’mon Dems, he’s a good pick. Stop obstructing.
Obstructing? Are you kidding?
Here’s where things got crazy for me. This SCOTUS pick, Gorsuch, has a pretty dismal record on LGBT rights, most famously the Hobby Lobby case. This is a guy who we are told is our best choice. I had LGBT friends chime in on the discussion, indignantly insisting that this was the best we are going to get and we should get behind this nominee, and “pick our battles.” Presumably because they’ll get worse from here. One even scolded on a “tit for tat” and said she’s sick of it.
Sick of people fighting for our rights to live our lives free from legally sanctioned discrimination? Sick of fighting for her rights, too?
I realized in that moment that I’d had enough.
Honestly, my friends, I’m tired. I’m tired of people who want to sit on the sidelines and tell us all to play nice. I’m tired of people who tacitly support bigots who pass laws to chip away at our hard-won rights, or look the other way when people in their circles display open hatred toward us and other minorities. The ones who take the silent, easy road while others work tirelessly for better legal protections, or put themselves into the line of fire and risk even physical harm so that we can all have better lives. The ones making fun of the women in pussy hats from the comfort of their couch.
I watch the real damage being done behind the rapid-fire, executive decree, twitter storm, alt-fact media blitz, sham administration. These are tests. Tests on what our limits are. What we will accept as normal. How far will they go today? What outrageous assault on human rights will they pull back after public outcry, because they know the next one will seem less offensive? This strategy is real and we must be vigilant.
Here’s the real question before those of us who call ourselves liberals, democrats, or progressives: Have we learned the lesson? The GOP has taught us that Americans only respect total a-holes fighting for their cause. Compromise might be our natural inclination, but compromise is weak. Period. My friend still insisted we must take the higher ground. To what end? Progressives have no leverage in votes, so what will be gained by compromise in a system the GOP broke eight years ago?
We have an election that was directly influenced by the Russian Dictator. Our POTUS has thumbed his nose at every single value of our democracy and seems hell bent on rolling back the rights of our community, Muslims, Hispanics, women—well anybody not a heterosexual white male. He’s got a cabinet filled with white-supremacist, anti-environment, anti-worker, anti-minorities, anti-healthcare millionaires. The Congress is now unleashed to undo every social program and regulation that they despise, regardless of the consequences to us as citizens.
No, I don’t want elected Democrats to compromise. I want every Democrat and fair-minded person to stand their ground. What do we have other than our integrity? Stick to your principles and your constituency will reward you. The crowds in the streets are no longer interested in compromise. Neither am I.
I’m going to resist. I will march. I will write stories of resistance. I will do whatever it takes. What say you, friends?