MOTIVATING DEMOCRATS – BY ELLIN CURLEY

There’s an interesting strain in Jewish history. When Jews are persecuted, killed, locked in Ghettos or severely discriminated against, as in most of our history, we stick together. We stay strong and united. We cling to our traditions and our religion. We stay proud and unbowed as we fight to survive, as individuals and as a culture.

However, there have been periods in our history when the persecution was lifted and Jews are more openly accepted into the larger societies. When that happens, Jews tend to rapidly assimilate. In the process, we lose some of our Jewishness. We adopt the culture of our homeland. We intermarry. We raise our children less Jewish. This has happened in America since the 1960’s. Without an external enemy, we lose our motivation to maintain our cultural and religious identity.

We become complacent and lose some of our unique spirit as a people.

I believe that Democrats and  progressives are, in some ways, similar. When things are going well for us, we lose our identity and our will to fight. We don’t vote in off-year elections. We don’t participate in local and statewide politics nearly as much. We don’t stay organized, motivated, and active without an external crisis to propel us into action.

We were motivated by George W. Bush. We became a vocal anti-Bush, anti-Republican, anti-Iraq war force. We voted, we protested, we became a presence on late night TV. Jon Stewart of “The Daily Show” became the most trusted man in America. “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report” became some of the left’s major sources of news and sustenance.

Then Obama came along and we went back to our daily lives, leaving politics far behind. We stayed home for the mid-term elections and a large majority of states were totally taken over by Republicans. In the 2016 election, many Democrats were not ‘excited’ about Hillary Clinton. No one believed that Trump could win. So too many of us stayed home on election day or voted for third-party candidates. Now we have Trump to motivate us again.

And we sure are motivated. We are marching and organizing with a vengeance. We are running local candidates against Republicans, even in deep Red states. We are pulling in record vote tallies in special elections all over the country. We are winning local and national elections in deep red areas. Progressive organizations are raising money like crazy, with small donations as well as large ones.

Now there are many more late night shows to take up the Democratic/Progressive banner. Facebook, Twitter and other internet platforms have been a big factor in this Progressive explosion. The outrage is everywhere.

Hopefully we can maintain this level of activism and enthusiasm into the mid-term elections in 2018. Hopefully that will be enough to win over one, or maybe even both houses in Congress. If not, we may not be able to get the major change in Washington that we want through the ballot box before 2020.

There shouldn’t be a problem keeping Democrats active as long as Trump or Pence are in the White House. Let’s just hope we’ve finally learned our lesson and don’t crawl back into our apolitical holes once we get rid of the current Republican scourge on our country.



Categories: Election, Ellin Curley, Government, political parties, Politics

Tags: , , , , , , ,

8 replies

  1. Bit of irony in the Obama quote. His presidency fulfilled so many dreams that many were lulled into serenity.

    The wolf was still at our door.

    Like

    • TO be complacent when things are good is short sighted thinking. It’s always important to keep the ‘good guys’ in power. Once you lose control, it’s twice as hard to get it back. And the damage that can be done in a short amount of time is scary.

      Like

      • But it can be hard to remember. Some of us think we deserve to have the good times LAST. Why do we have to live in constant terror of The Other People? There’s something so wrong with political systems in this world.

        Like

    • Isn’t it tragic how quickly the Trump administration has been able to roll back so much of what Obama accomplished in just one year! We are now watching our dreams go up in a haze of regressive, Republican smoke.

      Like

  2. Ellin, you just successfully argued for the presence of a little adversity.
    Leslie

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think we all need a prod to get moving. If everything is great, we don’t feel like getting out and doing what needs doing.

      Like

    • Unfortunately, that seems to be what Democrats and Progressives need to get motivated and voting. The Republicans don’t need that kind of a push to get to the polls in off year elections and local elections. My little town has been in the total grip of corrupt Republicans forever. Democrats don’t even run for most local positions. And I’m in a blue state!

      Like

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