Arm the Left with the 2nd Commandment
I’m starting this with a strange caveat. I don’t believe what I am writing. But in this upside-down world in which we find ourselves, I’m no longer sure that the idea itself doesn’t have value.
Let me back up.
I used to be a teacher — as was my dad. I taught English; my dad, physics. As I joined the profession, he challenged me to approach English teaching as any good science teacher would: labs, hypotheses, trial and error. What the ed world would generally call constructivist teaching.
My task was to create opportunities for students to construct, in process, their own understanding. This, he argued, was how people really learn.
I think there is a fair critique that liberals — to borrow some more ed-speak — have relied too heavily on direct instruction when our political reality has required a more progressive approach, kick-ass ed pun intended! We’re boggled by Republicans’ unwillingness to live out the worldview we keep preaching at them even as we actively mitigate any harsh, real-world learning they would experience at the hand of their own political decisions.
Democrats need to remember that sometimes the lasting lesson comes from letting your kid touch the stove.
Look at Obamacare. An eight-year lecture on the merits of the Affordable Care Act has done less to educate Republicans than just the initial glimpse of life without it. Even Republican lawmakers are now backing off their commitment to repeal the law. Imagine if, years ago, Obama had allowed one of the many Congressional efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act — without regard for its replacement — to cross his desk. This Republican posturing would have been laid bare then, taking away an incredibly successful campaign strategy in the process.
It’s in that vein that I’m starting to favor Trump’s new push for religious freedoms that legalize discrimination — or, I’m sorry, allow businesses to live out their faith as the God-fearing people businesses now are.
The heart of Christianity is the commandment to love your neighbors as yourself, and these first two weeks have provided a solid argument that Trump voters have lost sight of this commandment. If “Religious Freedoms” allow businesses to deny their products and services to gay people or to impose their contraceptive preferences on their employees (neither of which Jesus talks about anywhere in the Bible) certainly a business would have legal grounds to enforce a ban on people they deem in direct violation of Jesus’ most spoken message.
So let’s ban hate-loving Trump voters from our stores!
There is real power in this. We know that Trump voters — especially in this era of globalization and deregulated monopolies — are running very little of the economy. It’s not just my new favorite stat that Clinton decimated Trump in basically any part of the country with a strong economy. The best demographic predictor this election was education level.
Sure, Trump supporters would still be able to shop at Wal-Mart and Menards and Hobby Lobby, but when Johnnie Walker and Budweiser both put out diversity ads in the immediate aftermath of the Trumpocalypse, you realize just how much of our economy is anti-Trump. Hell, even the Koch Brothers have spoken out against him.
There’s the added pressure of brand loyalty in all of this too. Companies that participate in a ban like this are likely to win over Millennials, who overwhelming detest Trump. Yes, they may lose some Baby Boomers, but what business can afford to be on the wrong side of that history?
Just imagine how slighted Trump supporters will feel when they can’t access Facebook or Starbucks or Amazon or Coca-Cola or iTunes or any computer or cell service or the internet just because of their beliefs. I am confident this is an injustice they will expect their government to redress.
And that’s the real message we need to make clear. We don’t want this. A government that permits businesses to discriminate is not an America we want to live in. But if Trump is making the rules now, we have no choice to but to play by them.
And we will.
And yeah, we have both the economy and the future on our side, so make your new rules carefully.
I got accused of being angry a couple of times this week. I don’t deny the charge, but the writer in me prefers more accurate diction. I’m aghast. It’s aghast mixed with frustrated and hurt and chomping-at-the-bit, sure, but mostly aghast.
I can’t put any morality behind the decisions our government is making.
What I don’t feel, though, is victimized. Call me conservative, but I’m ready to start calling out these whiny, self-centered Trump voters who feel entitled to a government that slows the world down just so that they can keep up. Grab a hold of your own bootstraps, sonny, and start running.
I’m woman-ing up and ready to fight. If you are tired of our bleeding hearts, try out four years without our compassion. And wisdom. And work ethic.
In this new knowledge economy, we have become the working class.
We run your government, we teach your kids, we do your research, we develop your products, we handle the logistics that make global trade look simple, we fix your computers, we keep the peace, we produce your entertainment, we write the code that looks like naked ladies to you, we protect the land you hunt and camp on, we keep your drinking water clean.
Try out four years without us. Or two, if you’re smart. Hell, see if you can make it two months without getting us into some new war.
And when you’re done throwing this hissy fit and ready to join us in the 21st Century, let us know. We’ll be standing outside your door, ready for you to calm down, and ready to clean up your mess. Again. Just like we did in 2008 and 1992. But no more free rides. We’re gonna expect your vote this time.