What's Good About Today's Democratic Party?
November, 2023: Asked and Answered
Good Morning / Afternoon / Evening to you. It has been far too long!
If you are reading this, you know I lost my primary bid…six months ago. The general election is over. However, it feels that even though the side of good won citywide, we still lost. And it is something that has been on my mind for months…what did we win, what is going to change, and how can I be a part of this?
I hadn’t planned on making a newsletter about this, however, I received this tweet:
I mean, It isn’t every day that I receive such a low-effort query that gives me pause — low-effort posts are the hallmark of the bully party of former high-school wrestling coaches who now feel they should be a part of every conversation, even those that they can’t understand. Ya’know, like, “Why should we give women body autonomy???” or “How can diversity ever make our homogeneous ‘culture’ more vibrant???” Just kidding. These people wouldn’t use the term “homogeneous” as anything more than a poorly executed insult.
So, without further adieu,
What’s Good About Today’s Democratic Party
Today’s Democratic Party is a big tent. It is the party of Joe Biden, it is the party of Joe Manchin, it is the party of Joe Hogsett. These men are not progressive. These men are simply a bulwark against the right. They serve no purpose other than to stop the endless grind of the minority party that has convinced themselves they are relevant and righteous. These are the men who serve no purpose beyond not being the worst.
Today’s Democratic Party is also the party of Bernie Sanders, it is the party of AOC, it is the party of local democratic-socialist Jesse Brown. These folk are on the opposing side of the party. They represent the future. They represent our aspirational goals. They represent what could be if we only had the will to believe in ourselves. They represent the party at its best. And are often ostracized both internally and externally for demanding we live up to our ideals.
I feel that people vote for the first out of fear for the future while hand-wringing that we don’t have the latter.
So what is good about the party?
We are the party that demands liberty for all. The Moms for Liberty's claim to this title is tenuous at best. They want a fascist view of society that represents a form of Christianity that does not appear in my Bible, nor their own. They want control over others.
Even the most baseline Joe-Democrat wants to see a society where we aren’t judged by our religion. One that does not judge by the color of one’s skin. One that doesn’t judge because of who we love. From here, we diverge mostly in the strength of our conviction. The Joe-Democrats act as if there are truths in the much-parroted ideas that standing up for others means that we are taking protections away from others. The Joe-Democrats will support diversity while secretly feeling that these policies may actually be detrimental to the traditional core white audience while ignoring that a more fair system lifts all.
I have serious problems with the middle-of-the-road Democrats. And I can understand why so many people moved towards the Republican Party: Americans like winners. We like to score. We don’t care for incremental improvement; we are a nation that wants to see points on the board, and we want big numbers. The average team in an NFL game scores around 24 points a game. And we love this. In the Premier League of Soccer, the most common score is 1-0. And tying is considered respectable. By and far, Americans hate this.
Republicans are NFL, Democrats are Premiere League. Both are technically ‘football’ but with completely different rules. Republicans want to see points on a board, while Democrats are satisfied with a win, but will settle for a tie.
But You Didn’t Tell Us What Is Good Yet!
What is good is that despite all the middle-of-the-road Joe-Dems, we have a wing of the party fighting for what is good and right.
In the Big Win category, we have a party that ensures that Unions are still viable, while the ‘right’ wants to kill them (via Bloomberg).
In the smaller wins, we have a party ensuring that medical procedures and drugs are fairly priced. Link to Article (NYT free).
I am thankful for the grassroots. I see it daily. I see folks like my friend Eric who give empirical evidence necessary to stop Aaron Freeman’s War on Pedestrians. You can find his website here: https://indypedcrisis.info/. I see it in neighborhood associations like my own NESCO (Near East Side Community Organization). I see it in my friends with MADVoters and folks like Scott Aaron Roger’s HoosLeft newsletter/podcast.
Note: after linking the latest article, I realized he and I used the same turn of phrases to describe the same thing. Dang it, I will not be editing this post!!! Please support and subscribe to his work.
What is good about the Democratic Party isn’t the party that governs; it is the people that want more. It is the grassroots. It is the party of the people unafraid of others, unafraid to demand they be treated as equals. What is good about the Democratic Party is that we aspire to be more than what the folks at the top tell us we can be — and fight to lift others while we do this. The Republican Party fights like hell to be ruggedly independent, “me for myself and my own,” xenophobic, and afraid. We are not. And we reject this.
What is good about the Democratic Party is that we care about others; we do not demand you follow our belief systems, we do not demand you look like us, and we don’t ask for anything in return. Even if you oppose everything about us — you are not the enemy. You are someone we love and want to be there for.
My Grassroots Effort
In the coming months, I will be announcing a grassroots effort to revitalize Indianapolis and our state. I will need your help. And I am here to help your efforts. This is where we excel — people helping people. I have a friend looking to build a non-profit bodega to support his community, I want to be there for this. If anyone has skills in organizing, let me know! We need a way to connect our projects and support one another. I will be passing out a Google Sheet that I hope you add your projects — or even candidates you want to support. I have my little list of projects I'm working on for the Near East Side and would love to replicate our successes in your community.
This is what I see as powerful with our Democratic institution: we have the power of people.
And with that, I hope you have an amazing week! I sat down to sip some coffee at Coat Check in the Anthaneum in downtown Indy and felt the need to write. I may not have answered the question I started, but the goal was to kick the tires on this newsletter and be more vocal about what we all care about. The campaign may be over, but our work is just beginning.
PS. Any suggestions on how this letter should look in the future and a new name for it? Leave a comment below!