Giving Up the Fight: Should Republicans Drop Pro Life; Should Evangelicals Give Up on Traditional Marriage; Should Everybody But the Catholic Church Run Away?

Losing. Sucks.

There has been a spate of articles and interviews, including one with no less a personage than former Presidential Candidate John McCain, expressing the hand-wringing dismay of defeat that many right-wing politicos and even some socially conservative Christians seem to feel because they got slam-dunked in the November 7 election.

I’ve ignored most of this, for three reasons.

1. It’s natural to go a little nuts after you get beat in an election. It’s a humiliating experience all around and it makes anyone who goes through it a little bit crazy for a while.
2. I’ve never taken the Republican position on social issues all that seriously in the first place. I know there are many sincere people who have an R on their voter ID card who believe in traditional moral values right down to the ground. But I have thought for quite some time now that these people are being tolerated, patronized and used by the party power structure. I think the Republican Party is really all about corporatism and is just using social issues to get votes to push for corporatism once it gets power. I’m basing this on what they’ve done when they do get power.
3. I’ve assumed that after the clothes-tearing, ashes on the head, woe is me, I wuz robbed, post getting beat emotions pass that most people will settle down and go back to thinking more carefully again.

One of the miseries of the internet is that it makes it too easy for people to pull down their own pants in public. There was a time when we confined our crazy grief from the getting whupped times in life to the safety of our homes, families and close friends. We kept our embarrassments within the circle of people who would never tell on us, and who, out of the blindness of love, would soon forget it as if it never happened.

Losing. Sucks.

But the internet makes it all to easy to spew out a bunch of hyped up, grief-ridden angst onto the screen and then, by hitting send, memorialize all our crazy stinkin’ thinkin’ for the ages.

My totally unsolicited advice and equally unsolicited but sincere admonition to all these woe-is-me sayers is to calm down, slow down, take a breath and wait. Give yourself the space to feel and think this through before you jump in there and start saying things you’ll have to explain away later.

If, for those of you this may happen to, somebody sticks a mike in your face and asks what you think, tell them you’re still too close to it to have thought it through and you’ll get back with them. They may argue. They may accept it. But who cares? The press doesn’t have subpoena powers. You don’t have to talk to them if you don’t want to, and my advice is that when you’re feeling as shook up as a lot of people appear to be about this election, you shouldn’t want to.

As to the questions I posed in the title, Should Republicans drop pro life; should evangelicals give up on traditional marriage; should everybody but the Catholic Church run away, I have an answer for you.


If you believe it, and you know it’s right, then why would you be dropping out and giving up and changing course?

If, right now, you’re too frazzled and frizzled and just plain scared to face the fight head-on, take a breather. Tomorrow is Advent. Go say your prayers. Take an honest look at yourself. Go to confession. Get right with God.

And also, clean up your house, hug your kids, tell your spouse how much they mean to you, go to a movie, read a good book, and spend an evening with your friends.

Losing. Sucks. Life is beautiful anyway.

Live. Breath. Get over it.

After the New Year is plenty soon enough to start gearing up for the next political war. I know that the boys and gals in DC are already threatening to push the whole country and the entire world along with it into economic catastrophe. If you’re going to do one political thing, I would advise you to send your Congressman and Senators an email telling them to stop show-boating and just do their jobs, at least until after Christmas. The New Year is soon enough for them to start whamming each other.

There. I’ve said my say.

If you’ve got any thoughts on any of this, feel free to chime in. I’ll even allow wailing and moaning and we wuz robbed complaints just this once.

  • Peg

    Okay, this might sound negative at first, but personally I no longer give a yin yang what these dems or repubs say. I agree with a recent article that noted that Washington has lost it’s moral force and is left with only financial and military force. As the saying goes , “follow the money” and you’ll know who rules and what they really value. Too much disconnect and corruption and people are suffering and dying. Neither party is truly prolife–I totally agree with you about the corporatized. The solutions for the fiscal cliff from both sides will only suppress thing more. Maybe you can solicit better ideas for this in another post.

    Sadly our fourth estate which used to provide reality checks and safeguards have been bought off or deceived or both. It’s up to we the people to give up the partisan bickering, pull together and fight for our families our workers and for good. We need to consume creditable media from outside our mainstream or borders to be better informed.

    By keeping our faith in Christ and always standing up for and living in truth and justice, love and peace no matter whats trending or what inane pundits babble about or what sacrifice is involved we will stay strong amidst any storms of despair or unchecked passions or deceptions or pride. Right now we simply can’t afford to put our faith in political parties or these two. We have to rise above. If we can do it in time we might see some miraculous things begin to happen.

    • Bill S

      It is more obvious than ever, as we approch this fiscal cliff, that the rich have the Republicans in their hip pocket. The Republican Congress will not concede to allow the rich to pay their fair share of the national debt under any circumstances. So we will be plunging off the cliff because of them. I suppose they would have worked with Romney to get at least something accomplished but look at the way they have dug in their heels against Obama. This is no healthy for either party.

      • Dave

        There is no “fair share” of the national debt. The citizens DID NOT run up the debt. The politicians did. That said, I don’t really care if they raise taxes on the rich by a few percent. Seriously, though, our country is headed for disaster in so many ways, and we are stuck arguing over whether to raise taxes on the rich by a few percent!?! It’s like arguing about whether to bail out water with 1 gallon or 1.5 gallon buckets while the Titanic is sinking. CUT SPENDING BY A LOT – ACROSS THE BOARD! That’s what we need to do. Plug the hole in the sinking boat. But it won’t happen.

        • Bill S

          Whether there is such a thing as a “fair share” or not, the Republicans are holding out to protect the top 2% and people should remember that the next time their Congressman comes up for re-election. Let them live on 2% of the vote. They are in the pocket of those who can most afford to contribute to their campaigns. Tell me Labron James can’t afford to pay a bigger share of the debt than you and me. Yes, I think you are right, it won’t happen.

          • Dave

            For what it’s worth, I think you are right that the GOP should drop its ill-conceived defense of the rich. It’s not like Obama even wants to raise taxes that much on them in the first place. But this is just a distraction, and will be a drop in the bucket of the national debt.

  • Imelda

    That’s the sad thing – when a person or party or whoever is only after votes and politics, and not truly rooted on a principle and a belief greater than himself/itself and its/his own ambitions, it is quite easy to abandon anything that is perceived as an obstacle to his/its goals. Conversely, it is also easy to assume something that it is not. Sigh..

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      Yes, it is sad. But, unfortunately, the leadership in our political world has to come from behind, from the people, not the leaders we’ve elected.

  • Art Chartier

    With all due respect, the GOP is no more about “corporatism” than the so-called Democrat “party of the people.” Really big bucks have been “laundered” through union and corporate donors and paid back handsomely in government contracts. Follow the money is sound advice on all sides. Further, the Democrat “party of the people” has had full sway in Detroit, Chicago, and Washington DC… and how has that worked out? Billions and billions of dollars have been spent on the “War on Poverty” and nothing has changed. And while I’m venting, the Catholic Church didn’t do so well either… the Bishops spoke and no one listened.

    I really do appreciate your trying to live out your faith in the political arena, but sloganeering doesn’t get us anywhere. Both political parties are corrupt to their core… because of the huge amount of money it takes to get elected to public office these days. You nailed that in earlier posts.

    It’s going to take a lot more than “get over it and get on with it” to fix the mess we’re in. And it starts with some self-examination, humility and prayer.

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      Art, I know all this and basically agree with it. The fact is, that it’s the Rs who campaign on being pro life and are now yammering about how they need to back off from it. As for the Rs being corporatists, they are. They simply are. When they get in power, that’s the agenda they push. I’m more than tired of both parties. Also, it doesn’t make one of them right to point out the failings of the other. I wrote this in response to discussion I’m seeing by prominent Republican leaders and prominent evangelicals that they should drop pro life and stop defending marriage. That’s how they are reacting to the loss of November 7. Actually, considering that, I went pretty easy with this.

      As for needing self-examination, humility and prayer … yes and right on. Look here.

      Luv Art! Good to see you here.

  • John Scotus

    Yes, losing sucks. But you are right that the GOP has only tolerated social conservatives to begin with. Whenever there is even a minor hiccup, the usual GOP suspects go on TV or write editorials proclaiming that while they are “personally pro-life”, maybe the GOP and conservatives should forge a truce on these issues and push them to the back burner. Very often , these usual suspects are senators, which goes a long way towards explaining why, even though since 1980 the GOP has had as part of its platform the selection of pro-life judges, the Supreme Court is still pro-death.
    Romney was part of this crowd. “Shut up!” he and his minions said, over and over again, because “it’s the economy, stupid!” So, after Santorum withdrew, we did their bidding and shut up, knowing that Romney had no plans to alter the political landscape on social issues after he was elected, but consoling ourselves with the thought that as bad as he was, he had to be better than Obama.
    Yet, in the end, it wasn’t the economy, but it was values that won the election. Romney’s values center on a vague idea of decency and the primacy of business expertise above all else. Obama, on the other hand, offered a plethora of values to his supporters–just not good ones. And in the end, we are left with the unanswered question of whether a man who thinks the electorate can be bought (Romney) would really have been better as president than a man who bought the electorate (Obama).
    For social conservatives, there were no good choices in this election–only sadness. And losing still sucks.

  • Ted Seeber

    I’m convinced that the people who thought that the central planning of communism was a good idea in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, discovered the crony capitalism is a much more dependable method of central planning in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.

    What the rest of us are dealing with is just fallout from that.

    • Dave

      You nailed it, Ted.

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