BY SHARON MARTIN
No, it’s the message itself, coming in loud and clear, and this is what they are saying:
- We must balance the budget by cutting domestic programs and imposing Greek-style austerity on America. It has worked so well for the Greeks.
- Hands off tax loopholes for the rich. Billionaires made this country. They did it without any help from the government or their employees. The fact that they fund our election campaigns and give us sweetheart jobs when we are no longer in office has nothing to do with our stand on breaks for billionaires. Really.
- All poor people need to do to be rich like us is work hard, take risks, and have some initiative. Luck has nothing to do with it. Mitt Romney, for example, wasn’t born lucky, he was born rich. It’s your fault if your parents are poor and uneducated or if you attend school in a crumbling building with 50 to a classroom; you should have been born with opportunities.
- Education is a local issue. If you happen to live in the wrong zip code, it must be what God intended. Just don’t come looking for a handout when you can’t get a job with your sub-par, locally-funded education.
- Standardized tests improve education. Unions destroy schools. Heck, unions are bad for democracy.
- Tar sands oil that can be shipped overseas and the resulting oil company profits are more important than clean water at home.
- War and electric fences will insure America’s security.
- If you volunteer to fight people you don’t know over issues you don’t understand, you’re a hero. If you get wounded, you’re a liability.
- Take your pick of the following stands on health care reform: 1] If you don’t have access to health care, that’s your fault. 2] Every American has access to health care. Besides, if you don’t like your insurance and healthcare options, you can always run for office.
- Reproductive rights are so 20th Century. Welcome to the future where insurance companies and legislators get to make such decisions for you.
You can spin this any way you want, but the message is the problem.
When Republicans truly care about the people, about equal opportunity, about alleviating poverty and inequality, about justice, there will be no need to invite Hispanics and blacks and women into the fold; they will come of their own accord.
– Sharon Martin lives in Oilton, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer