Sorry, It’s About Racism

Politics
(I apologize for the political kick I’ve had lately. The D.C. crisis has just been too engrossing for me)

They’re so angry.

Watching the shutdown and debt ceiling fight unfold it seems to me that the hardest of the hardcore Tea Party members are getting white hot, more so than usual. One of two things is about to happen, either they’re not going to get what they want or they’re going to drag us into our first-ever default.

The first scenario will empower them. The second will be the end of them.

As I sit and absorb all of the political maneuvering and posturing, one question keeps sticking out in my mind. Why are these people so damn angry? Many of the Tea Party politicians and their supporters are more than willing to bankrupt this country and drive it into default rather than give an inch to Obama and his health care law. Why? How can setting up these exchanges, establishing a penalty, requiring people to buy health insurance, draw so much ire from these people? When you ask them why they’re against it, they don’t spout economic statistics or alternatives to dealing with rising health care costs. In fact, they don’t really provide an answer that remotely resembles anything to do with health insurance.

Instead you hear things like, “We’re losing our country” or “Obama’s destroying our freedoms” or “Obamacare’s a train wreck of a law.” But there’s never any specifics about what they don’t like or what they don’t want to change. They only offer a visceral repulsion.

The irony of their position about Obamacare ruining the economy is that in their ridiculous gambit to eliminate it, they will obliterate the economy with a credit default. It’s like telling a hostage-taker, “put down the gun or we’ll launch a nuclear weapon on the hostage.”
Their position reveals exactly what the problem is — they’d rather destroy the country than to give Obama something he already has. It’s about hatred of the president. Pure and simple.

I’m a southerner. I remember the days of Bill Clinton and all the rage he created among the conservatives down here. But even when he was in the middle of an impeachment process, that anger never equaled close to what I see now.

And being from the South, I can tell you that the only true explanation is racism. Are all of the Tea Party folk racist? No, I’m not saying that. But you can’t take away the racial underpinnings of their movement. Many of the things they rant about (unbalanced budget, rising deficit, the bailouts) started under George W. Bush, something that gets glossed over at the rallies I’ve been to. I’ve had to fight the urge several times to say out loud that the last president with a balanced budget was Bill Clinton. But I was afraid that I’d get tarred and feathered.

I’m sorry, it’s simply racism. White’s don’t like to hear the charge, but it’s true whether they want to believe it or not.

Obama represents the very thing that frightens many white Americans — if minorities can win the presidency, what’s to stop them from controlling everything? When he was reelected, that fear gave way to the answer — nothing can stop them, especially as time wears on. Minorities are on the winning side of statistics. Their numbers grow at a time when white numbers are dropping.

With all of this vehemence that you see from the Tea Party throughout the country and from the southerners, I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re not going to let things go so easily. As minorities begin to play a bigger role in national politics, white anger is only going to grow and intensify.

Watching the latest budget/default battle is unnerving because it shows how far some are willing to go to rail against the oncoming tide. If they don’t win this fight over the debt ceiling, they’ll pick a battle somewhere else with the same endgame—borderline anarchy. The anger will continue to boil until they finally achieve some sort of explosive victory, whatever that might be. They’re looking for anything. Like that Republican congressman said, “We have to get something out of this and I don’t know what that even is.”

Very telling.

It leaves me wondering who’s going to suffer more when they finally get the destruction they want, the angry whites or the rest of us.

 

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Allow me to be wrong.

Before the election I said the Right was rising. I guess I spoke prematurely.

During my spartan autopsy of the recent election, it has occurred to me that the horizon may not have been as Red as I thought.

In the days leading up to the election, I sifted through the countless possibilities of the electoral map. Even afterwards, I still sit through the map, adding a state here, assuming a state there.

The epiphany? Romney never had a chance. All Obama needed (aside from his dependable states) was Ohio and another swing state. Hell, there was even a scenario whereby if Romney won Ohio, Florida AND Virginia, he still would have lost.

As it turned out, Obama won every single swing state along with Virginia, Ohio and Florida.

Romney never had it. And if I picked up on that before the election, you can sure as hell bet Mitt’s camp and the GOP upper ilk noticed the numbers too.

Some seemed in denial on the surface of it. But they had to know. They stuck to their guns and Right-skewed polls like Rassmussen in order to give the appearance of confidence, hoping it would fool potential voters. Red pundits understand that reality doesn’t matter to most people. It’s all about perception.

But the election sure felt like a painful reality for the Right.

It’s now the aftermath and many conservatives have said they should have had a better candidate, a more conservative candidate. The way I see it, Romney was their best hope.

I say that because of the swing state massacre along with a few additional observations. Gay marriage ballot initiatives passed. Despite federal law, one state legalized marijuana. To state the obvious: the majority, albeit a slim one, didn’t want a conservative president. A more dyed-in-the-wool Neo-con would have lost by a wider margin.

Obama is one of the most liberal presidents we’ve had since LBJ. If voters opted for him over a moderate Republican, a more conservative candidate would not have had a chance. America is more centrist than conservatives want to believe. Clearly with the election results, the majority showed this country they want to keep things left of center. A nation with a growing number of states allowing gay marriage, legalizing marijuana, electing gay senators and voting to keep a Democratic majority is not a conservative nation.

What does this mean for Right ideals like denying global warming, cutting tax rates and helping the rich? Not sure yet. That body is still on ice awaiting autopsy. I’ll leave the slicing and dicing analysis to the Reds.

I do know the backlash has started though. Obama talked about global warming in his victory speech. That’s the first mention of it since 2010.