I heard the thunderous boom of the political right crashing down on Tuesday evening. The Leviathans of conservatism, arrogant with self-entitlement and the privilege that comes with power and money, toppled like the Atlantic City Boardwalk during Hurricane Sandy.
Some conservatives, many of whom confidently counseled that Obama’s 2008 win was an anomaly, thought they had catastrophically lost the country. Others worried aloud that they had lost their majority status of power and entitlement. Karl Rove demanded that TV stations, including conservative Fox News, recant the prediction that Obama had won Ohio, thus winning the election. Donald Trump called for a revolution, one quite different from the one I called for in my last post You Say You Want a Revolution. The next morning Rush Limbaugh opined, “In a country of children where the option is Santa Claus or work, what wins?”
I can only wonder if the wealthy campaign backers, the ones Romney courted in his infamous 47% speech that was secretly recorded by wait staff, are suffering buyer’s remorse.
I want to think the Republicans learned something from the election, but I’m more inclined to think they didn’t, especially because of the manner in which they took their losses. I can still hope though.
Maybe I can help them through this apparently dire tragedy. This is what I think they can learn:
1) It’s not about power; it’s about empowerment.
2) It’s not about who has the most money; it’s about who has the most heart.
3) It’s not about white superiority; it’s about the equality of our diversity.
4) It’s not about tokenism; it’s about open acceptance and seats at the table.
5) It’s not about being king of the hill; it’s about moving mountains to level the playing field.
6) It’s not about legislating Christian dogma; it’s about respecting religious freedom.
7) It’s not about paternalism; it’s about what we can learn from one another.
8) It’s not about staying the same; it’s about evolving into something better.
9) It’s not about exclusion; it’s about inclusion.
10) It’s not about race; it’s about the content of one’s character.
11) It’s not about gender restrictions; it’s about gender parity.
12) It’s not about abortion; it’s about educated, safe, and accessible reproductive health options.
13) It’s not about entitlement; it’s about lifting the quality of life for all Americans.
14) It’s not about denying history; it’s about reconciling our future.
15) It’s not about hatred; it’s about the noisy and riotous negotiation to consensus.
16) It’s not about lying to gain the edge; it’s about embracing the truth of our changing country.
17) It’s not about extremism; it’s about understanding the centrality of the greater good.
18) It’s not about the right or the left; it’s about the full continuum of conviction.
19) It’s not about the 47%; it’s about the 100%.
20) It’s not about the end of the world as you know it, or, as Ronald heard today, an “Obamanation;” it’s about the roar of a united voice in America.
Out of the ashes rises the Phoenix, and you, my dear Republicans, can share in the rebirth of America as a country that embraces its diversity and cares about all of its citizens. We will not exclude you, nor will we be punitive toward you. We welcome you to the new America.