I think it is time to write the obituary of the Republican Party. I submit this for consideration.
The Republican Party has finally passed away, and true conservatives everywhere have entered a period of mourning. The attending physicians said that the immediate cause of death was choking on its own bile. Concern remains that the base illness that endangered its health in the first place, bigotry and ignorance, still represents a grave danger to the public at large, and the CDC warns that everyone may want to take steps to isolate themselves from contact with those who show symptoms of this same illness, or at least inoculate themselves well with education and tolerance.
The party has been ill for a very long time, of course, but it is only in the last few years that it was suspected that the illness was fatal. Hope remained until November 9, 2016 that the party might find a way to rally and heal itself. Even after that point, when the fatal truth was apparent to most, many of those who held it dear and recognized the great contributions it has made to the country in the past clung to hope that it could be revived, that the illness would pass in time.
Now, however, it is time to put aside all pretense and admit the truth. The GOP is dead, and that obscene thing which still bears its name does not bear its soul.
There was a time when the GOP stood for something in America, when it was much admired by many and it was respected even by its political foes. It stood for such things as prudent spending and balanced budgets. It stood for a strong common defense and American leadership in the world. It stood for free trade and limited governmental interference in the economy. It stood for law and order, and sometimes even for justice. It stood for a cautious approach to social and political changes, but not against change itself. It stood for an America in which people of all races and beliefs could co-exist. It stood for the idea that American democracy was special and worth preserving and promoting in the world, and protecting at home.
Now it has repudiated all those ideals and stands for nothing. Nothing at all beyond the pursuit of power in order to impose the beliefs and opinions of a vocal and angry minority on everyone else. Or perhaps it stands for the idea that America is and always should be a white male dominated place. Whatever. It doesn’t stand for anything worth standing for anymore.
That thing that calls itself the Republican Party now is no longer a political party at all. Rather it is a cult of personality formed around a cartoon figure of malignant and ridiculous make. An amalgam of everything that is wrong with America in one bloated, aging body. It is enslaved by a vast network of lies and propaganda that have completely perverted everything the party once stood for. It even stands with the enemies of America against our allies and against America’s own interests.
Some day, perhaps, the corpse can be revived and the party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower will be resurrected as something that Americans of good conscience can admire again. Or perhaps some new party will eventually emerge from its ashes to provide a responsible option for conservative Americans, free of bigotry and white nationalism. Free of authoritarianism and hatred. I truly hope so.
Until that time, however, we must do the only thing we can do. Bury the corpse to prevent its corruption from endangering the rest of us. The first shovelfuls of dirt can be thrown into the grave on Tuesday, November 6.