In the last week, we have gotten to witness the death throes for the Republican Party as a national political force. Following the Sandy Hook massacre, the only leaders of the party willing to state their views called for principals and teachers to carry firearms. Yesterday, House Speaker Boehner was unable to call a vote that was only symbolic, in that it would be a measure to raise taxes for those earning $1,000,000 per year in earned income. He couldn’t get a majority of his members to vote for this. Today, the NRA made it clear that the problem was that violent video games, music videos, and movies were prevalent, telling members of the Republican Party that this was the only cause of the epidemic of this wave of carnage sweeping the nation.
Let’s first look at the idea of arming teachers and principals in grade schools, middle schools, and high schools throughout the nation. So we would actually want a million assault weapons in our schools? How can any reasonable person think that this makes sense? How can anyone think that this would reduce assault weapon attacks?
Let’s now look at what happened in the House yesterday. Members of the GOP were so afraid to cast a vote that would raise taxes on the top .25% of wage earners that they implicitly condone raising taxes on everyone in 2 weeks. Why would they do this? The reason is obvious…they fear a primary in two years, where they recognize that they could well lose their jobs.
Wayne LaPierre held a press conference where he called for every school to have armed police installed. He somehow believes that if we take police off of the streets and put them in schools with assault weapons, that this would reduce violence in schools.
The Republican Party is now and in the future going to be a political force in the Deep South and in rural areas. Because of gerrymandering, it will have a majority in the House for the rest of the decade. It will never hold the presidency again; it will never hold the Senate, with the possible exception of 2014; it is now at its maximum number of Supreme Court members.
For decades, we made fun of the Democrats as a collection of interest groups that held disparate interests and values. Well, the GOP has shown itself to be homogenous. Unfortunately, outside of the Deep South and in rural areas, the like-minded values are not shared by those who live in more populated parts of the country.
This last week has been incredibly depressing for people like me, more so than any time since 9-11. To watch a political party that we had so much hope for sink to such depths in the face of a national tragedy and a fiscal cataclysm is beyond belief. I wish that I had some more hope for our political system. What has become of us?