Predictably, the next presidential race has started, in earnest, and, just as predictably, calls for radical change in the Democratic Party are heard again and again.
This is ridiculous.
The Democratic Party is not in need of rebirth. In almost all elections since 1992, a majority of Americans have voted for Democrats. Without actually crunching the numbers I venture to say that this is has been true since the election of 1932. That is to say, the existing Democrats, warts and all, have long had a size-able numerical advantage. Most of the country is entirely willing to vote Democratic most of the time.
The tripod of racism/sexism, economic illiteracy and outright criminality, is that which is holding up any kind of advantage for the GOP… and nothing else.
So why do Democrats have to be responsible for changing that? What can Democrats say, that they haven’t already said, to counter racism and sexism? What can Democrats do to counter economic illiteracy in a small, but vocal, minority of the country? What responsibility do Democrats bear for Republican lies? Why do the Democrats have to answer for Republican gerrymandering that has propped up their minority almost to the breaking point?
Sherrod Brown isn’t saying anything that Hillary Clinton hasn’t said: people are just more willing to believe him, and not her… is all. But here’s the thing: 65 plus million people still believed Hillary Clinton and voted accordingly. A size-able portion of the ‘other side’ likely also believed her, but for cultural indoctrination and cognitive dissonance simply could not be compelled to pull the lever for a woman. Somehow — and I’m at a complete loss as to how — this is her fault.
Barack Obama didn’t singlehandedly create a majority out of nothing but his charisma and some raw clay. He just tapped into what was already there.
The next Democrat to come along, whomever that is, is likely, also, to do and say similar to both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and to garner a significant majority. That’s what the numbers have shown for decades. We don’t have to be reborn. We don’t have to change significantly. We don’t have to answer the other sides lies and calumny. We don’t have to argue with the dissonance. We just have to remain Democrats. We have to be the majority we are…
Can you imagine how much better at being Democrats we could be if we stripped away this layer of self-flagellating doubt? This cringing, almost embarrassed, posture of tactical retreat and nibbling at the margins? If we stopped acting like we were the smallest minority we think we are and started acting like the clear majority we are…? Can you imagine?