I’ve wondered why so many hard-working Americans who struggle to live on meager paychecks vote for Republicans.
I decided it had to be the media they choose to watch or hear – media directed by those on the right who use lies and misinformation to lure in viewers and listeners. They incite anger and resentment by convincing their audiences that Democrats are communists or socialists who want to take away guns, approve of all abortions, want open borders, are against religion and other ridiculous accusations. Those media sources have decided that supporting and spreading lies is the only way to keep their viewers and to keep their favorite politicians in office.
When they accuse Democrats of being socialists or communists, they assume their audience is too uninformed or lazy to look up what those labels mean. They know those are scary words, so they keep using them.
They also love stoking the fear that Democrats will take away their guns, although successive Democratic presidents and Democratic-controlled Congresses have not taken anybody’s firearms or defied the Second Amendment. Many Democrats own guns for hunting, home protection and target practice. In fact, almost every American agrees on the need for reasonable laws that discourage certifiably dangerous or mentally unstable people from owning firearms. It’s not a guarantee that unstable or dangerous people won’t be able to get them, but it makes it harder and saves lives.
I’ve never heard one Democrat advocate for open borders. They just want people who are asking for asylum to have a chance to state their cases. They believe once those immigrants are working and contributing to our economy, they should be able to become citizens within a reasonable length of time. If every hard-working, undocumented immigrant were to quit their jobs right now, thousands of companies would go out of business. That’s why Republican lawmakers never go after the employers.
No Democrat encourages abortion. They support affordable birth control, but Republicans keep defunding organizations like Planned Parenthood which provide it. Affordable birth control and family planning would eliminate the necessity for most abortions. Since I’ve never been in the shoes of a woman who is desperately poor, who already has more children than she can support, or has a medical condition that would make pregnancy and birth a danger to her life, I’m in no position to judge. It’s laughable that the same Republicans screaming about personal freedoms think it’s just fine to take away a woman’s freedom.
As for law and order, some far-left liberals stupidly used the slogan “defund the police” last summer. Republicans and their compliant media considered that a huge gift. They proved that during the 2020 presidential campaign when they ran absurd ads showing a desperate woman calling 911 and getting no help. Let’s get this straight: There’s no Democratic movement to abolish police departments. They only want to encourage police departments to eliminate racial bias and teach them how to de-escalate confrontations with mentally unstable people.
Meanwhile, right before he left office, the man many of them supported in the 2020 presidential election and who touted “law and order” pardoned several indicted white-collar criminals who had no remorse for their crimes. I didn’t hear one Republican say a word about that.
Many Republicans and their favorite media outlets accuse Democrats of being “bleeding heart liberals.” They’re right that our hearts feel for people who work two or more jobs and still have trouble paying their bills. They’re right that Democrats care about protecting the air and water against pollution, and some feel even guilty if they toss out a piece of plastic that could be recycled. And their hearts do bleed for anyone who’s bullied and discriminated against because of their gender, sexual orientation, nationality, color of their skin. That’s called compassion.
Speaking of compassion, many Republicans claim to follow the teachings of Christ, so it’s a mystery why they aren’t the “bleeding hearts” since the Jesus they claim to worship taught love and acceptance for the poor and downtrodden. That includes immigrants fleeing violence, starvation and poverty. In other words, Republicans’ accusation that Democrats are anti-religion is laughable and indefensible.
Last are accusations about the national debt and deficit under Democratic presidents. A quick internet search shows the truth, but Republican leaders and their favorite media would hate it if you looked it up. Truth to them is like water to the Wicked Witch of the West.
Pat Nash has lived in the Baraboo area, off and on, for more than 35 years. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.