There are lots of prominent Republicans, libertarians and Tea Party folks who are women, black, Hispanic, gay and everything else. So why does the media and the popular culture continue to push the meme that Republican stands for racist, sexist homophobic hater of all things not white male? Worse, why has the media and popular culture been so successful in making this narrative credible? The very fact that articles like this make news proves that some people really think Republicans are just naturally bigots
Growing up in a news and entertainment world dominated by the coastal media I ‘understood’ that Republicans were racists and sexist, that conservatives wanted to bring back slavery and kill gay people and that libertarian themes of limited government were just code words for protecting WASP privilege. The problem of course was that numerous conservative and Republican thinkers are not old white males. People like Thomas Sowell and Clarence Thomas and Phyllis Schlafly have always been there, seeming to contradict the contention that people on the right hate woman and minorities; Sowell and Thomas are black and Schlafly is a female.
I think we are finally at a point where this meme no longer holds water. Representative Allen West is a Tea Party hero and the only Republican member of the Congressional Black Caucus. Marco Rubio, who is of Cuban decent, is a very popular Republican senator and widely viewed as a potential Vice President for Mitt Romney. Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina are Tea Party favorites and of Indian descent. GOProud is a powerful and popular group of gay and straight Republicans.
This year alone two of the hottest Republican candidates for Congress are Mia Love and Richard Tisei. Mia Love is a black female and a fierce advocate for limited government. Richard Tisei is gay, moderate on social issues but a brilliant defender of fiscal conservatism. Both of these individuals represent the future of the right. Limited government, jobs and economic development are the issues that matter most to voters and the issues around which the right should unite. More importantly, people on the right eschew identity politics and so do not identify themselves primarily as black, white, gay, Hispanic, male or female; they identify as taxpayers and American citizens.
The left pretends they care more about women and ‘minorities’ because they focus on giving benefits specifically to individual groups. This is the nature of identity politics, dividing people based on superficial things and promising spoils in exchange for support. Where the right views people based on character and capability and wants everyone to strive to succeed and expand the pie, the left wants everyone to line up with their hand out, arguing over how to divide a shrinking pie. The left seeks to control people by dividing them.
The media and the left bend themselves into contortions trying to maintain the theme that Republican are racist, sexist homophobes despite growing evidence to the contrary. The problem for the left is that contraindicating evidence continues to build, demonstrating that it is just not true. Thanks to the rise of the new media the American public can see for themselves, not just the growing number of powerful women and minorities on the right, but the level of vitriol and hatred the left often reserves for those they perceive as traitors. The left is also boxed into a corner because they have gotten so used to throwing out the race card instead of forming a cogent argument. Now that the American public is beginning to see through this, the left is losing the only weapon they have.