Eating our own
Whoa! Some of the comments to Mike Razar's "Lessons from the NRA Ad" were way out of line. Sometimes, I can see the conservative movement disintegrating right before my very eyes-to the great delight of lefties the world over.
Conservatives of all stripes need to take a deep breath and calm down. People are scared. Anxiety levels are flying high. Conservatives are worried about the rest of our lives in this country-will it remain the America we know and love? Will our kids enjoy the same opportunities and freedoms we had growing up? How extensive will Obama's fundamental transformation be and will we be able to reverse it once we are back in power or will the damage be done? How vulnerable will this make us to outside threats? I could go on....
We are shocked at the double speak and lies emanating from our President and the Pravda-like collaboration he enjoys from a complicit press that serves at his beck and call. The Inauguration was particularly painful for those of us who campaigned hard for a qualified, intelligent and humble man who got eaten alive not only by the President and his minions, but at times, even from his own.
We are honest to the point of fault. We carelessly air our dirty laundry for the left to steal off the lines. Our punditry often does us more harm than good with their analyses and evaluations. You don't see any of that coming from the left.
One thing we can agree on: the progressive movement in this country seeks to divide us. But with articles and comments all over the conservative blogosphere damning the Tea Party, vilifying John Boehner, cursing "establishment" Republicans, scapegoating Karl Rove, dredging up neo-cons, finger pointing at RINOs and pitting Tea Partier against Republican against Ron Paul Libertarian against social conservative, well, we don't need to worry about the left-we're doing their work for them just fine.
Mr. Razar didn't do anything wrong other than make a suggestion which is worth considering. Even though that NRA ad was hard-hitting, we took it on the chin because of the reference to the First Daughters. Perhaps, we could have had the same hard hitting message without having handed the left that victory.
In our Tea Party group we talk about messaging, language and optics ALL THE TIME. It's a fact a life. And if you needed any more proof of it, just look at this last election. Facts didn't matter. Reality was irrelevant. All that mattered was the story told-the more it hit you in the gut where it could generate a knee jerk response, the better. Reactions like "OMG! Romney puts women in binders! He's bad for gays! And the middle class! Oh, and dogs!" resonated with more people than his record on all of the above, the facts about the economy and the reality about the "recovery."
And, if this impression can be generated in a 15-30 second sound bite, conservatives will watch any democrat candidate ride that sound bite right into the Oval Office.
Not long ago, I merely suggested to a group proposing an immigration initiative in California, that they consider having the spokesperson be anyone other than a white male. In my world, whoever is best qualified should be the spokesperson, but I don't live in MY world. I live in THEIR world and it's not so much that we have to play by their rules, but we could all benefit by taking a few pages out of their playbook from time-to-time. We aren't compromising on our principles if we do that. It's just smart politics.
Two of the people heavily involved with this initiative stopped talking to me because I had the audacity to make that suggestion. We conservatives are something. Not only do we do our own dividing, we also turn around and demand civil discourse when we aren't even capable of delivering it ourselves.
How many conservative groups do you know that have broken apart because of infighting due to a difference of opinion or strategy? How many dysfunctional central committees are you familiar with? Our Tea Party group arranged CityWatch groups for all of the cities and towns in the Bay Area. Many of them failed before they even started because the participants couldn't agree on a strategy. How can we possibly win elections?
Go ahead. Disagree with one another, but do it respectfully and no matter what the ultimate outcome, stick together. And if you consider yourself a conservative but want things to go only your way all the time and will only vote R if your particular preference for a candidate is elected, decide thusly: you are either with the majority when push comes to shove or, if you cannot bring yourself to do that, instead of destroying the party from within, consider doing your own thing somewhere else.
That's what the left does and they're running the country, they own the schools, the control the media and manage the pop culture. If you want to continue living in this dystopian new-fangled America, keep up with the infighting, divisiveness, and uncivil discourse. But, if you want your freedom back, find a way to work together even when there is disagreement.
Post Script: By writing this, I am violating my own code by speaking out about dissension within the ranks, but it is out of hand and we are blindly walking into the fire. It has to stop.