The 2012 presidential season is in the rear view mirror now but if you take a quick look there appears to be billows of white smoke pouring from our tailpipe. That smoke is the anger and disbelief being felt by the radical right and its mouthpiece, the Tea Party.
There was a time in American politics when the defeated accepted their loss, licked their wounds, and became the loyal opposition. They continued their fight but did so from within the system established by the US Constitution and decades of law and tradition.
Such is not the case in today’s America. Right-wingers in Texas are calling for secession from the Union, Donald Trump is tweeting for revolution, Twitter is awash in racist tweets coming mainly from the deep South, Facebook pages are filled with memes expressing both anger and certainty of the approaching apocalypse, Tea Party groups all over the nation are declaring the death of America. In Lebanon, Ohio one projected America will be a socialist nation within the first month of Obama’s second term. Glen Beck is advising his flock to buy farmland in conservative Western counties, remove their children from public schools, and load their weapons. Sounds a lot like the right really is clinging to their guns and Bibles.
The vast majority of this anger and hatred has no basis in reality. It is mostly based in hard-rock ideology driven by the constant dribble of Fox News, talk radio, and well-financed ultra-conservative Internet blogs. The self-serving “media” sources have convinced their flock that they are the majority, they have lost control of their nation, and they should fight to win it back.The truth, however, is just the opposite. They are not the majority, they are an ever shrinking minority. Their views are not the views of most Americans, they simply have 24/7 voices telling them otherwise.
Every two years we have a national election and every four years we choose a new president. We just did that and the majority of Americas expressed the only truth that exists, they wanted the Obamas to continue residing in the White House and the Democrats to control the Senate and the GOP the House.
While this may sound like a continuation of the status quo, it isn’t. The majority have let politicians know that one can be too radical in their beliefs about rape and women’s issues. They expressed strong (60%) agreement that the wealthy should be paying a higher tax rate. The election of Elizabeth Warren in MA suggest that there is a desire for tougher regulations on Wall Street bankers. And, both the exit polls and personal discussions I and others have had with voters show that Republicans and Democrats strongly want the two sides working together and solving the serious problems the nation faces.
The Congress, the President, and the leadership on all sides of the political spectrum need to simply shut up, take a breath, and listen to what the majority of the voters just said. All of this dissent and hatred is serving no good and simply, should never be!