Yes, I’m talking to you, the one who voted for decency, kindness and progress when you cast your vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. The one who values the Constitution and hopes one day to see its promises fulfilled for every person regardless of color or economic status. Republicans have, for far too long, claimed “Real American” status and all the rights that come with it. Which is to say, that unless you vote like they do, look like them and believe what they believe, you’re not only not an American, your voice, your vote is fraudulent.
Enraging, isn’t it? That’s why you’re doom scrolling and watching hour after hour of whatever news source or comedian keeps you abreast of each new tantrum from the Crybaby-In-Chief. This was always coming. President Reality Show Ratings telegraphed it in 2016. He’d accept the election results if he won, but not if he didn’t. Throughout his reign he praised white supremacists and jailed children and infants in kennels not fit for dogs. He was always going to do whatever it is he’s doing right now — not release federal transition funds to the incoming administration, claim he won, pretend he won, act as if he’s about to weaponize our own military forces against us. OK, that last one surprised me, I’ll give you that. It’s terrifying. It really is. But he’s not going to succeed. You know that right?
OK, so you know that. You’re worried he’s going to sow fear and distrust in our electoral system so that people will no longer come out to vote and guys like him will stay in office forever — or whatever worst case scenario you can imagine. You’re not alone. Seth Meyers, in his Closer Look segment on November 11th said, “And even if this specific coup attempt doesn’t work.” “If” as if there’s a possibility it might. “If” is what you say if you believe there’s even a sliver of a chance it could work, which it won’t. Not only does every ballot challenge have to go through the courts, but if they did, then they have to go to the House where Nancy Pelosi would oversee proceedings. It’s not happening and Republicans know it. However, Meyer’s “if” isn’t surprising coming from a man who consumes a steady media diet of Republican Hellscape for a living.
Republicans know how to dominate the media narrative and shape American identity.
And this is exactly the point. The Republican message infects our minds and many of us, most of us, are having a hard time letting go of their version of reality. Yet, that’s what the Biden/Harris win means for us right now. We can log off our social media feeds and fire up our favorite streaming services and relax — truly relax, for a moment. Hell, we could read books or even make things. We don’t make anything in this country anymore, but YouTube is full of DIY videos. Maybe it’s time to figure out how to make a chair or a desk, or hell just make a cake, use a box mix. I do! It doesn’t matter. Just stop giving Republicans oxygen.
I’ll let you in on a widely known secret. Republicans know how to dominate the media narrative and shape American identity. They know that to control the people, they have to control the media. And who better than the man who rose to the presidency carried on the wings of a racist media meme.
So this nonsense he’s spewing form Twitter and right-wing media outlets is just that. If we continue to let him take up space in our minds, he wins and I don’t just mean he wins in an emotional or psychological sense, although there is that. I mean he could win again in 2024. And that’s what Republicans do really well, play the long game. Democrats do not. Republicans stack the judiciary with far-right judges because they understand how to stay in power. They gerrymander districts to suppress Democratic votes, particularly the votes of people of color. They’ve been doing this for decades. Democrats do not play a long game and they more often than not, don’t know how to win. Democrats play by the rules. Republicans break them.
I’m asking that we transition from passive consuming to active listening and engaged learning.
But we can change that now. We’ve already proven we can. Usually, however once politics gets boring again, we look away and Republicans don’t. They keep their base so ginned up on hate and fear that they’re ready to mobilize for every election, and this time, they’ve got 70 million voters ready to pull the lever for the reanimated corpse of JFK Jr. should he be the Republican nominee. We cannot, I repeat cannot fall back into the belief that our voices don’t count. Listen, only 65 percent of eligible voters voted in this country, which is 15 percent higher than any U.S. election in a century. You’ll hear media outlets celebrate this number, but I think we should grieve it. Democracy isn’t something we can ever take for granted again. As those who still believe in it, we must find the voters who didn’t vote, get them registered and engaged. I promise you the Republican media machine has already been mobilized and they don’t intend on losing the next one. If we don’t get to them first, in four years, we will have a second Donald McRonald presidency, or worse Tuckman Cuckson will step into the White House.
Stopping the doom scrolling is also about sustained action. We’re great at the grand gesture and when we’re impassioned, we win. We’re less good at continuous effort. We can change. That’s also something we’re good at, changing, learning, growing, getting better. I’m asking that we transition from passive consuming to active listening and engaged learning.
We’ve bought ourselves a reprieve and we’ve got a lot of work to do, namely, party-building in the South. Go Stacey Abrams, the real heroine of this election cycle. And I’d love to think we could flip Georgia for the Senate, because if we don’t all our work will be for very little. As we speak Mitch McTurtleneck is already withdrawing into his fleshy cavern and taking his Senate cronies with him. It would be hard to overstate how critical flipping Georgia could be for the country so that we can actually start building a middle class again and closing the wealth gap. (In future postings I’ll address what happened to the middle class and how both parties failed us but how we can keep Democrats accountable for rebuilding it.)
So, first thing’s first, mute them all, every last one and let’s get to work undoing all of the misinformation and lies they’ve been embedding in the American psyche for the last forty years.
One of the many things Republicans have done well to convince this country of is that big government is evil and Democrats need Republicans to keep them in check. None of that is true but it means that people like you and me, yes even us, dear patriot, believe it. I believe that’s why we lost seats in the House. People who voted for Biden feared giving him too much power and voted for Republicans down ballot.
In future postings I intend to explore how we got here and why we believe what Republicans tell us but are skeptical of the Democrats. Why the large media outlets hold Democrats to a higher at times impossible standard and say little to criticize Republicans who do much worse. Why the narrative around Nancy Pelosi is negative even on media outlets that appear more left-leaning, but speak of McConnell in neutral terms.
Let’s show them how real Americans make this country great.
So, first thing’s first, mute them all, every last one and let’s get to work undoing all of the misinformation and lies they’ve been embedding in the American psyche for the last forty years. Without our oxygen, they’ll start eating their own. We’ve got a Senate to take back and a country to rebuild. The Republican Party is dead. Those who stood by the Traitor-In-Chief and voted for him revealed their craven cynicism for what it is, blind power and greed. They and their voters have lost the right to any moral high ground or any right to lead.
We won and it’s a good day for actual freedom and boring politics. So, please, stop doom scrolling not just for your own health, but for mine and all of the others like us. We’ve protested Trumpism and its inevitable outcomes, voted and our voices were heard. Let’s show them how real Americans make this country great.