Thursday, November 04, 2004

Open Letter to the Democratic Party

Dear Democrats:

Well, you lost, once again, to a man you consider a smirking, idiot chimp who can't put a sentence together, and also a fiendishly clever mastermind who had been single-handedly orchestrating the ouster of Saddam Hussein since the day he took the oath of office. And you expected the masses to accept both premises without ever noticing the dichotomy, because your campaign was founded on the notion that all you needed to do to win was to get people to hate George Bush.

It didn't work.

You couldn't decide if your slogan was "Hope is on the Way" or "Help is on the Way." Your candidates used both interchangeably, but both statements imply that the people of this great country are somehow hopeless or helpless.

We're not.

You not only lost the electoral vote, but the popular vote as well. This was a clean victory, and a clean victory calls for a clean start. So I'm giving you one, along with a few words of advice.

Take a look at this map. See all the red bits? That's us. See the blue bits? That's you guys. Do the math. You little blue bits have got to learn how to live with the red bits; not the other way around as you seem to assume.

Here's what you need to know about people who live in in the red bits:

We still wave the flag out here without irony. In fact, though irony is making inroads, we're still a pretty non-ironic bunch. Out here, jingoism is not a synonym for patriotism. The words freedom and liberty aren't just marketing slogans to us. We aren't as jaded as you. We believe in freedom so much that we think everyone should have some. That's why we support our military and what they're trying to do in the middle east.

We love the military like we love our NASCAR and country music.* We see military service as a badge of honor, not a shroud of shame. This election showed that for many of you Vietnam still looms large in your imagination, and your Vietnam-era feelings about the military are still quite evident. You distance yourselves from the military while we welcome it--even the most difficult aspects of it--because the military is made up of our family and friends. More than three quarters of the military vote goes to Republicans. Think about that. If you want the votes of members of the military and their families, you need to support the military without apologizing for it later.

Out here in Red State country we value integrity. Speak plainly and act truthfully because we have no trouble spotting the fakes and posers. We wouldn't have ridiculed your candidate for not deer hunting. But we will ridicule him for faking it. We also take faith serioiusly. You can't just sprinkle your speeches with Bible verses and God's name. We can spot fakers in this area, too.

We don't give a rodent's hindquarters what Europe thinks of us. You can decry that attitude as parochial, but it was that kind of attitude that founded this country. If you want to win elections, you need to reconcile with the Red States before you even think about reconciling with France.

Most importantly, we are not inspired by hatred. If your method of getting votes is to whip up hatred for Republicans, you will never gain true support for your candidate, even among your own people. The emotion you summon in your supporters is a passion against, but it is not for anything. Worse, hatred cannnot be controlled or directed. Like a wildfire, it is prone to sudden and unpredictable surges. It exists only to destroy. How quickly the hatred you whipped up against President Bush became a hatred for the Red States, for those serving our country overseas, for the country, and even for democracy itself. Hatred will never be a positive force. The sooner you learn that, the better for your party.

You have two choices. You can move your party back toward the rest of America, or you can move it out toward the fringe which will only continue to marginalize your support until the only people left calling themselves Democrats are Michael Moore and the media elite.

Your next exam is in 2006. Start studying for it now.


*Disclaimer: Personally, I don't like either NASCAR or country music. But my neighbors do.

UPDATE: Frank has some similar thoughts here.


At 12:43 AM, Blogger Matteo said...

Nice job! I just gave you my first ever 'quote of the week' post.

At 11:03 AM, Blogger The Anchoress said...

Hey, found your blog via Matteo, and I concur, this is excellent. Very well done. When I get back, I will link to it!


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