For years I have disagreed with the idea of a third political party – that there were two main parties and to get things done (like elect a President) you needed to support one of the main parties. When Arlen Specter switched parties earlier this summer, it was due to the type of political expediency; he was not a Democrat, but closer to them than the current Republican party. I think that many people would have thought that that if there were a third party, would have come from the fringe edges of the liberal side of the country. What has become apparent to me is that the true need is in the Republican party as the party moves more dangerously and sociopathically to the extreme ends of conservatism. These are the conservatives that include crazies like the birthers, secessionists, teabaggers, the town hall meeting attendees, etcetera, etcetera. This is not representative of the entire membership of the Republican party and those more moderate Republicans are being pushed out and silenced. The party is represented by the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck. I have to believe there are more viewpoints than that. But as they hold their party hostage, even rational and fair-minded Republicans are required to heed this fringe element, even if it puts them further out of step with the general public (the public who reserves secession for Texas – that is asking Texas to secede.)
At a point when this country is divided to the point where there is no valuable debate, we are left with one side in power, the other side babbling like village idiots, and the everyone else in the middle ducking and taking cover. Does it have to be this way?
I’m not saying that the current Republican party line doesn’t have place in this discussion, what I’m saying is that we need more intelligent discourse in order to get things right, and while the Republican party is busy entertaining thoughts of revolution, teabagging, birthing, and seceding – intelligent discourse is not on their list of to dos.
*Photo by Sage Ross. Creative Commons License