Tonight's a two-fer, my friends!
Firstly, if ever the country was going to adopt a Mission Statement (I mean, besides that ol' rag, the Constitution), I recommend the following, from last night's Rachel Maddow Show:
Ohio really did go to President Obama last night. And he really did win. And he really was born in Hawaii. And he really is legitimately President of the United States. Again. And the Bureau of Labor Statistics did not make up a fake unemployment rate last month. And the Congressional Research Service really can find no evidence that cutting taxes on rich people grows the economy. And the polls were not skewed to oversample Democrats. And Nate Silver was not making up fake projections about the election to make conservatives feel bad. Nate Silver was doing math. And climate change is real. And rape really does cause pregnancy sometimes. And evolution is a thing! And Benghazi was an attack ON us, it was not a scandal BY us. And nobody is taking away anyone's guns. And taxes have not gone up. And the deficit is dropping, actually. And Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction. And the moon landing was real. And FEMA is not building concentration camps. And UN election observers are not taking over Texas. And moderate reforms of the regulations on the insurance industry and the financial services industry in this country are not the same thing as Communism.
Listen. Last night was a good night for liberals and for Democrats for very obvious reasons. But it was also, possibly, a good night for this country as a whole. Because in this country we have a two party system, in government. And the idea is supposed to be that the two sides both come up with ways to confront and fix the real problems facing our country. They both propose possible solutions to our real problems. And we debate between those possible solutions. And by the process of debate, we pick the best idea. That competition between good ideas, from both sides, about real problems in the real country should result in our country having better choices, better options, than if only one side is really working on the hard stuff. And if the Republican party, and the conservative movement, and the conservative media is stuck in a vacuum sealed, door locked, spin cycle of telling each other what makes them feel good, and denying the factual, lived truth of the world, then we are all deprived, as a nation, of the constructive debate between competing, feasible ideas about real problems.
Last night the Republicans got shellacked. And they had no idea it was coming. And we saw them, in real time, in real humiliating time, not believe it even as it was happening to them. And unless they're going to secede, they're going to have to pop the factual bubble they have been so happy living inside, if they do not want to get shellacked again. And that will be a painful process for them, I'm sure, but it will be good for the whole country - left, right, and center. You guys, we're counting on you. Wake up.
There's real problems in the world. There are real knowable facts in the world. Let's accept those and talk about how we might approach our problems differently. Let's move on from there. If the Republican party, and the conservative movement, and conservative media are forced to do that by the humiliation they were dealt last night, we will all be better off as a nation. And in that spirit...congratulations everybody.
I believe in Rachel's hope for our nation wholeheartedly, but I don't think the majority of Republicans are ready just yet. Bringing me to the second portion of tonight's post...
I've heard the following assessment repeatedly over the last 48 hours from the Republican talking heads. And even worse, from females in addition to the usual suspects: "We have developed a welfare culture where almost half of us are doing nothing
but getting government handouts."
Yes, by all means, dismiss everyone who voted for President Obama's reelection as being on the dole. Of all my friends, coworkers, and family members who voted for President Obama, I can tell you that none of us is on welfare. Nor are any of us looking to be on welfare or hoping to live -- extravagantly, of course -- on government handouts. But damned if that isn't what they keep telling each other.
Here's a mindblowing suggestion for all of you Republicans -- who aren't actually reading this blog. ;)
If you don't want people to depend on welfare, educate them as children so that they have a better chance at succeeding as adults.
Educate people so that they may choose -- or invent! -- careers that have a demand and purpose in our world.
Educate people so that they are more likely to value their lives and their bodies and take better care of themselves.
Educate people so that they are less likely to have unexpected and unwanted pregnancies.
Educate people so that they can care for their children better and stop the cycle of poverty and abuse.
Educate people so that they can make better decisions for themselves and can become involved in their communities and government.
Educate people so that they are not afraid of change and can adapt to new technologies and realities of our CONSTANTLY CHANGING WORLD.
Educate people so that they don't fear those who are different than they.
Educate people so that they have the confidence to be their best selves and be productive members of society.
EDUCATE PEOPLE. Elementary, middle, and high schools should be training grounds for successful American citizens.
Ah, but you don't really want any of that, do you? You'd rather sit there and complain about all of the people you have no desire to help. You want them weak and poor and baby factories that are so distracted by their desperate need to survive that they don't notice you are exploiting them, your country, and your environment for your own disgustingly selfish agenda.
You are only interested in dominating those you deem less than yourselves.
But you've made a horrible miscalculation. Perhaps if many of you actually believed in evolution, you'd understand something called Natural Selection. Survival of the fittest. Change, adapt, evolve. The times, they are a-changin'. They have been all along. And instead of investing in the betterment of your fellow man, you've done nothing but try to keep us in our place. A place dictated by you.
Well guess what, my old white friends? Your days are numbered. And you had better pray to your God -- the real God, not the one you misinterpret to suit your needs -- that those you oppressed don't treat you as you treated them.
You do not deserve a shred of decency from this soon-to-be former minority. But you'll get it. Because you are rapidly becoming the past and we are not looking back. We are moving forward. This is America. It is in fact a melting pot. And if you don't like that, you are welcome to leave.