The Title “It’s easier to fool people, than to convince them that they have been fooled” is a quote by Mark Twain
I came across this Salon Article the other day that I thought was worth sharing. Although it’s from a few years ago (September 2012), I think it shows a good example of why I think the Democratic Party needs to start a new “Proud to be a Democrat” marketing campaign. I wrote about this back on February 16, 2015 in an “Open Letter to the Democratic Party” .
The Salon piece, “Why I left the GOP” was basically a “come to Jesus moment” for Jeremiah Goulka in regards to how he feels about the Republican Party and its philosophy. In it he describes his background and how he feels left behind by the Republican Party. Jeremiah describes it like this (separate excerpts):
“I always imagined that I was full of heart, but it turned out that I was oblivious. Like so many Republicans, I had assumed that society’s “losers” had somehow earned their deserts. As I came to recognize that poverty is not earned or chosen or deserved, and that our use of force is far less precise than I had believed, I realized with a shock that I had effectively viewed whole swaths of the country and the world as second-class people.”
“The enormity of the advantages I had always enjoyed started to truly sink in. Everyone begins life thinking that his or her normal is the normal. For the first time, I found myself paying attention to broken eggs rather than making omelets. Up until then, I hadn’t really seen most Americans as living, breathing, thinking, feeling, hoping, loving, dreaming, hurting people. My values shifted — from an individualistic celebration of success (that involved dividing the world into the morally deserving and the undeserving) to an interest in people as people.”
“My old Republican worldview was flawed because it was based upon a small and particularly rosy sliver of reality. To preserve that worldview, I had to believe that people had morally earned their “just” desserts, and I had to ignore those whining liberals who tried to point out that the world didn’t actually work that way.”
“Waking up to a fuller spectrum of reality has proved long and painful. I had to question all my assumptions, unlearn so much of what I had learned. I came to understand why we Republicans thought people on the Left always seemed to be screeching angrily (because we refused to open our eyes to the damage we caused or blamed the victims) and why they never seemed to have any solutions to offer (because those weren’t mentioned in the media we read or watched).”
You really should read the entire piece here to get the entire gist of his transformation. What is missing from the piece though is a new dedication to the Democratic Party. He talks about voting for John Kerry out of anger after the Abru Ghraib pictures and then makes this comment:
“I might still have stuck it out as a frustrated liberal Republican, knowing that the wealthy business core of the party still pulled a few strings and people like Richard Lugar and Olympia Snowe remained in the Senate — if only because the idea of voting for Democrats by choice made me feel uncomfortable. (It would have been so… gauche.)”
No matter how much he separates himself from the Republican conservative viewpoint he still can’t bring himself to vote directly for a Democrat by choice. This is what needs to change.
The Democratic Party needs to bring those who are unhappy with the conservatism into our fold. It needs to have people want to be a part of our liberal movement and not just part of an anti-conservative group. We need to make ‘being liberal’ an acceptable choice, not “gauche”. In other words, we need people to be proud to be a Democrat.
I put forth some ideas on how to do that in my post “An Open Letter to the Democratic Party”. If you have other ideas on how to do this, write to the DNC (Democratic National Committee) or the MDP (Michigan Democratic Party) yourselves and let them know how much this is needed. It is not enough to have people vote for the Democratic candidates for lack of an alternative. We need to enhance our brand and convince people to join us, after all they do believe in the same things as we do. They just need a new group to make them feel accepted and proud….and not so gauche.
Read the entire article here to see the struggle of his transformation.
tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis