Some Hoosiers who apparently didn’t like last week’s election results are ready to call it quits. Indiana citizens are among those from 41 states — including all 11 from the former Confederacy — who in petitions sent to the White House are advocating secession. As of Tuesday evening, about 15,000 people had signed Indiana’s online petition at petitions.whitehouse.gov.
I thought I’d give it a few weeks before wading into any reactions after the elections (other than my tweet about “Once you go black…”). But, wow, some of my Republican friends who have simply lost their damn minds. There are reports of people who are opting to unfriend anyone who they even think may have voted for President Obama.
I get the universal butthurt when your team loses. It is one thing to think this country is “moving in the wrong direction,” that direction being any direction away from the direction you wish to go. (Mind you, the country seems to have survived, no matter what side of the aisle you fall, President Reagan, President Clinton, and President Bush, so I think we’ll do just fine.)
Still, there are the calls decrying the “welfare state” our country is becoming. How our economy is being drained by welfare queens and people without a work ethic. Some of my friends have called shenanigans on the entire election due to voter fraud (obviously not an issue, mind you, during the Bush II/Gore election, however). All of these are myths clung to in order to make themselves sleep better at night, along with their empty declarations to move out of the country.
Why do I sound more than a little irritated? Because entire classes of people are being dismissed. The poor are those people driven by on the way to work from their houses in the suburbs. Cut spending, cut taxes and let the wealth that results trickle down to the less fortunate always sound like a great idea on paper. When you have no plan for the poor other than they can get the scraps from everyone else’s excess, you lose the battle of compassion. Folks know when they have been trickled upon.
Political and economic policy choices have a moral dimension and life is more than an intellectual pursuit with rhetoric and stances that lacks heart, compassion. I’d feel more comfortable if the remains of the “religious right” put their money where their mouths are: where conservatism falls short, the churches making their mission to have concern for the poor, those who fall through the cracks of the system, should be their mission. Not repping for Republican Jesus.
Hopefully there will be some serious soul-searching in the coming years. That maybe the Republican’s “Southern Strategy” has finally heard its death knell. That maybe they can’t show utter disdain for the working class and the poor. That maybe America is made up of more than white men and that their party ought to reflect that. That maybe they ought to find a sense of empathy along with their intellectualism.
Democracy is a “difficult experiment” and doesn’t always turn out the way we want (even when the officials we want get elected).
With that, I’ll leave you with this open letter from white people’s best friend: Dear Angry White Conservatives Mourning Romney’s Loss: Chill Out (It’ll be okay!)