Dances with Confused Elephants
EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE: Shifting on gay marriage will not make a difference. It will only reinforce the image of the GOP as a dated party that lags behind the Democratic Party’s initiatives. And gay marriage does not exist as an individual cause. It is part of a constellation of social causes representing progressive social mores. The idea that gay marriage is a stopping point is laughable. There is no stopping point. That is the whole point.
The left is not interested in gay marriage because it believes in marriage, but because it believes in destroying all existing social institutions. A Republican Party that fails to grasp that has no clue where it is or what it’s fighting. It might as well be sent blindfolded into the ring with Muhammad Ali. And that is indeed what has been largely going on. The Republican Party has capitalized on populist backlashes to the left’s culture war without really understanding them or believing in them.
Now the Republican Party has laid the corpse of the last election on the slab and come up with the expected answers. Some of them are correct, albeit belated. Many others are the sorts of things that the squishy side of the party has been recommending for a while.The Republican Party has gone from denying that there is a culture war to conceding defeat in the culture war while denying that it ever existed. Its program now is to push aside the socially conservative material and stop frightening off minorities. And that misses the whole point about everything.
The right has its racist elements like the left, but its weakness with minority groups has nothing to do with what the Republican Party is, but with what the Democratic Party says it is. The GOP is taking on responsibility for the things that it never did. That is a bad idea on the best of occasions, but a terrible idea since it only reinforces the exact same image that has attached to it.
The Republican Party doesn’t poll poorly with minorities because its party members wear hoods and jump out of cars in minority neighborhoods while shouting “Boo”. It polls poorly with minorities because the Democratic Party has built up an extensive infrastructure in minority communities, backed by a national and local media presence. (more…)