Because I’m a Republican, I’m quite accustomed to others making assumptions about who I am, or what I believe. Perhaps you have had the same experience.
If you are a Republican, many assume you are racist and selfish. That you dislike any programs which provide healthcare to the poor, or assist the unemployed, or the disabled, or those who, for any other reason, need a helping hand.
They assume you favor placing the needs of business, and the pursuit of wealth, above everything else, even if it may mean trampling upon basic human rights, or polluting our air and water, decreasing worker safety, or not paying workers a fair wage.
They presume you favor a strong military for war mongering, to bully other countries – even if it means more suffering and innocent lives lost – just so we can protect its own selfish interests and dominance around the world.
They assume you are a sexist because you are pro-life, believing that life begins at conception, and that you are a religious kook because you favor the teachings of the Ten Commandments, or putting “God” into the our Pledge of Allegiance (actually, unlike all the others above, they are right on point about this one).
And while others may demonize, belittle, or smear us for what we believe, defending yourself can be exhausting – even being hated by people who have known you for years simply because you expressed a conservative position or supported a Republican politician. For many of you, it’s part of why you feel it’s not worth opening your mouth in the first place.
But as we approach election day, this is no time for silence.
And if the mere words “Republican” or “conservative” are offensive to you, and that anyone supporting President Trump is deplorable, maybe the differences between us come down to whether or not we’d rather DO good, or FEEL good.
For example, is it more important to decrease homelessness in our country, or to “feel good” supporting the dozens of sanctuary cities in our country? Even though the top-ten American cities for homelessness are the same sanctuary cities that won’t cooperate with federal law enforcement? You see, by offering refuge to illegal immigrants, these cities are causing the price of affordable housing to rise – thereby making housing more unaffordable for all. In Los Angeles alone, there are 55,000 homeless. But tell me again, it’s the Republicans who are uncaring?
And while Republicans are thought not to care enough – or do enough – to curb violence in our communities, consider that 80% of the FBI’s “Top 10” most violent cities are ruled by Democrat mayors and city councils But again, it’s Republicans not doing enough?
And for those who despise Republicans and conservatives alike for being evil, does it concern you that 90 percent of the poorest cities are ruled by Democrats – or that 90 percent of the cities in the U.S. with the highest unemployment rates are run by Democrats?
Does it bother you that the vast majority of the most powerless and impoverished citizens in our country are concentrated in cities ruled almost exclusively by Democrats? But tell me again about how it’s Republicans who don’t care – and aren’t doing enough.
Doesn’t it concern you that Democrats pander for votes by campaigning to raise the minimum wage, even though this will increase unemployment by millions – and decrease the number of hours worked by those still employed – just like we saw most recently in Seattle? Yet, it’s the Republicans who put money before people? C’mon.
And when they call us racist, maybe we should ask why it took electing Donald Trump to reduce black unemployment to its lowest rate ever? Or for Hispanic unemployment to be at its lowest rate ever? Or why it took electing President Trump for more federal money to be allocated to Historically Black Colleges and Universities than ANY other president in history, and create Opportunity Zones to create investment into disadvantaged communities, affecting nearly 1.4 million minority households?
But again, it’s President Trump – and all his supporters – who are the racist ones? And not the Democrat-led welfare programs from the 1960s that virtually destroyed the black family, and ensured generational dependence?
And don’t even get us started about how it was the Democrats who objected to civil rights legislation in the 1950s and 1960s, in the first place.
So no, not all Democrats are bad – but neither is being a Republican, or conservative and it’s about time the pot stopped calling the kettle black.
Louis R. Avallone is a Shreveport businessman, attorney, and author of Bright Spots, Big Country, What Makes America Great. He is also a former aide to U.S. Representative Jim McCrery and Trump elector. Follow him on Facebook, on Twitter @louisravallone or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, and on American Ground Radio weeknights from 6 – 7 PM, streaming live on keelnews.com, on iTunes, and at americangroundradio.com.