The Grand Offal Party: The Great Champions of Democracy

 We are a so-called democracy where members of one party, The Grand Offal Party, continue to systematically disenfranchise citizens from voting. 

According to the Brennan Center for Justice, since January, “19 states have enacted 33 laws that will make it harder for Americans to vote. And those were just the ones that passed. As the center pointed out, “More than 425 bills with provisions that restrict voting access have been introduced in 49 states in the 2021 legislative sessions.”

Texas is leading the way. In August the legislature passed a law that bans drive-through voting and 24-hour voting, which were used by nearly 140,000 voters in Harris County — which is almost 50% Hispanic and 20% Black during the 2020 election. Umm, could that possibly be racist?

It prohibits election officials from sending absentee ballots to all voters, regardless of whether they had requested them; bans using tents, garages, mobile units, or any temporary structure as a polling location; further limiting who could vote absentee; and added new identification requirements for voting by mail. 

What’s with banning the use of tents and garages? According to rumor, a Republican spokesman said: “If you use a tent, it is an affront to the Injuns, oops, I mean, Indians, I mean Native Americans; it’s the equivalent of blackface. Injuns smoke the peace pipe in those tents and using it for voting would be devaluing their ritual.”

 And garages? Here’s the Republican spokesperson on this: “You know garages are for cars and power tools. Those are sacred spaces, just like the Teepee is for the Injuns, oops, I mean Natives, oops, Native Americans. After all, the car is the symbol of American greatness. Voting in a garage devalues American workers and just, well, just is Anti-American.”

Adding new ID requirements also places a burden on more marginalized communities. Republican operative: “Look, we went easy here. Some legislators wanted to require all young voters to bring their parents to prove who they are, so don’t push it buddy.”

Then there is gerrymandering. Because of population growth, Texas stands to gain two congressional seats. And although 95 percent of that growth was due to people of color, the Republican-led Legislature is working on new maps that would increase the power of white Republicans in the state and reduce the power of people of color. 

Furthermore, according to The Texas Tribune, “In the proposed Senate map, 64.5% of the districts have white majorities,” and “white Texans make up the majority of eligible voters in 60.5 percent of the proposed congressional districts, though they only make up 40% of the voting population. 

It’s called gerrymandering, but I call it old-fashioned cheating. It’s like playing a card game where only the white people have two aces to start with.

Next on the list: voters who didn’t vote for Donald Trump? People who like artisanal foods? College graduates? Can they do that? Why not? Whoever thought they could pass a law allowing citizens to sue an Uber driver who is aiding and abetting a women seeking an abortion by dropping them off at a Planned Parenthood. 

To use a few Trump’s favorites, this is what you call a ‘rigged’ system; it is a recipe for “stolen” elections. Don’t you think it is time for Democrats to create their own “Stop the Steal” campaign? 

The Republicans are masters of playing the opposite-game. When you ask them why they feel they need the voting laws in Texas, they tell you it is to preserve the sanctity of our cherished democracy. Brilliant, right? When you ask them about the Democrat’s voting rights bill that actually protects democracy, they become outraged and equate it to the Democrat’s takeover of the government. Telling, isn’t it? If we make voting easier, then Democrats will always win. That’s not fair. If you are going to play that game with us we are just going to have to equalize the playing field by simply taking out some of your voters. Fair is fair. I mean what kind of democracy do we have where one party has more voters than the other? That’s not democracy. Gee golly, that’s simply un-American. It’s outright, autocratic rule.

The evil of people like Mitch McConnell is that they can stand there with a straight face, look you in the eye, tell you their only goal is to protect our democracy, and then go home and sleep like a baby. It is the same evil and hypocrisy in the name of freedom that can promote ugly, and at times, terrifying, behavior towards teachers, parents and even their children who are following mask mandates. “Child-abusers” the anti-vaxxers scream, as they terrorize young children with their parents leaving schools for wearing masks. It is clear who the real child-abusers are, just as it is clear who is promoting anti-democratic laws claiming they are protecting our great democracy.

The Democrats on the other hand, twist and turn in the wind, resisting the obvious solution to “Stopping the Steal” and the hijacking of democracy. Does anyone believe that if Mitch McConnell were in the same boat he would hesitate for a moment to get rid of the filibuster? Democrats don’t need to be evil like McConnell to do this: They just have to understand that it is their duty to protect democracy. What more of a moral imperative do you need than that?

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