One appropriate definition of parasite is, “applies to one who clings to a person of wealth, power, or influence or is useless to society.” Trump sycophants are those politicians who follow him into his depravity, defending his crimes, trying to save their own careers. Sadly, this is the Republican Party we face today.
The simple reality is the only way decent people will win the culture wars we are fighting in the United States today, is to vote every Republican out of office. To do that we need to explain to people the realities of our system of government. Teach them which decisions are made at the congressional, or presidential level, and which at the state and local level. Explain how every vote counts including those for school board, county council, state legislature, and governor.
When you look at Florida, it becomes clear how dangerous state government can be to LGBTQ people, women, and all minorities. How their legislature passed laws banning what teachers can say and do in schools when talking about the LGBTQ community. How they would erase us from books and magazines students are allowed to read. Then they pass a bill limiting legal abortions to only six weeks. Many women don’t even know they are pregnant at six weeks. Now they have a vile governor who advocates for, and signs those bills. So, we have a confluence of evil. The citizens of Florida could change that if they want by only one method, and that is by using their vote. In 2022, fewer than 50% of eligible voters in Florida cast a ballot. Who knows what could change if we energized enough currently registered voters, and got new voters, to the polls?
We must educate young people on what their vote can do, and then motivate them to come out and exercise that right. They need to understand what it will mean for their personal freedoms in the future. What it could mean for the air they breathe and cost of their healthcare. People must understand judges are called to make decisions on how we live our lives, and those judges are either elected directly by us, or appointed by people we elect. Recently, we saw a Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice elected who will support a woman’s right to control her own body and healthcare for a 10-year term. It makes a difference. In North Carolina where only 48% of eligible voters voted, they elected judges who reversed decisions that had the impact of eliminating several Democratic congressional districts in the state. Again, voting clearly matters.
So, to build a better future for those who care about their personal freedoms, about the right to control their own healthcare, make it affordable, among so many other things, every vote matters. A vote today can save our democracy and ensure each citizen who has the right to vote based on our constitution, won’t find some of their elected officials continue to make it harder for them to cast their ballot.
The time has come for organizations representing women, the LGBTQ+ community, other minorities, and environmental issues; who see Republicans reversing any progress they have made over decades, to start talking to their members and supporters about voting. With each press release on an issue they are working on, they should add a paragraph about the importance of the vote and implore their supporters to register to vote. They should share with their members and supporters’ information on how to register in their state and how to vote. Along with calling for protests, engaging in lawsuits, and lobbying if they do that, they need to make it clear if their supporters don’t vote, the things they believe in will not come to pass. They will continue to lose. Explain while progress may be incremental, losing often creates drastic results.
President Biden recently told a voter who questioned him about a policy they didn’t think he was doing enough about, “Don’t compare me to the almighty, compare me to the alternative.” This is what we need to tell every voter to think about. Each Democrat must campaign on what he/she stands for and contrast it with what the Republican they are running against stands for. Then say to the voters in their districts, compare me not to what you think is perfect, but to what my opponent would do.
If we do that, Democrats win because their opponents today are members of a Republican Party sadly comprised of Trump sycophants and parasites.
Peter Rosenstein is a longtime LGBTQ rights and Democratic Party activist. He writes regularly for the Blade.