There is not enough love and empathy in the Republican party – a Valentine’s message

February 9, 2020 by epoetus

By Bert

For the Republicans it is crystal clear that power is everything, and love is not fundamental to their agenda.






Let’s start with this weeks’ national prayer breakfast, which was highlighted by a Lawrence O’Donnell episode on MSNBC this week.
• Political conservative and Harvard Professor Arthur Brooks spoke of love just before #3Peached took the stage: “If you want to persuade them there is only one way you can do it …. With love.”
• #3Peached literally turned away from the topic of love
• Nancy Pelosi was there
• #3Peached gave the most angry and vindictive speeches that day and even commented that he didn’t believe what the pastor had said
• As Lawrence O’Donnell so aptly said: “Trump does not understand what love is.”
• Lawrence also said that Arthur’s message was Jesus’s message.



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A Reflection

When have you ever engaged in a political discussion with Republicans where love and empathy are at the core? It’s not that this is impossible, but the general Republican debate strategy involves clinging to an ideology and a libertarian perspective, like capitalism or Evangelism, over utilizing love and empathy – and verifiable facts – to guide understanding and solve problems like immigration, gun control, abortion or global warming. This is not meant to be an attempt to turn the Republicans into a de-humanized other, but rather an attempt to render insight into what loving, compassionate and inspired Democrats are up against. This is a call for ‘tough love’ in the face of very serious consequences at a moment in history that will impact us positively or negatively for decades. We must engage and bring justice to this moment in history, and we cannot let the reality of conflict lead to hesitation.



How in the world does someone who doesn’t understand love become the leader of this country? It takes an entire party of ideologues, Evangelists, and oligarchs to do that. As stated before #3Peached is merely an extreme version of what the Republicans have been producing since the 60s – treasonous Machiavellian “ends justifies the means” Republican Presidents have become the norm. And somehow they have continued to escape justice at the hands of the Democrats. This is why the imagery of “hand wringing apologists” is so apt in the context of Democrats who have chosen to shift right in their ignorant and ill conceived pursuit of a failed Corporate Establishment strategy to compete against the Republicans. The Democrats must hold the line on democracy and the will of the people – via love, compassion, empathy and peaceful understanding. The Democrats need to do the hard work of educating the people and doing the hard work of explaining the consequences of shifting right with a loving and empathic message.



The Opportunity



In a recent Islanders’ Voice article on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. the focus was on a key message of his: “Only love can do that.” It resonates with what Professor Arthur Brooks said, and is the deeply spiritual message of Jesus. Clearly just about all attempts to appeal to the Republican Senators failed during the impeachment trial – all attempts except that with Mitt Romney. During the time leading up to and during the elections, we can keep that strategy going and build more empathy and love that will inspire us to take action. This is our country, and we the people decide what direction it will take. We are also the ones who feel the pain of failed policies or experience the relief from good ones. At the end of the day if a rich person is able to keep only $10 million or $100 billion, which seems to be their main focus and the purpose of many government policies, it does not impact their health very much – they don’t go homeless and they still have healthcare. That message of what everyone deserves needs to be taken seriously and the constructs in our government, its laws and the constitution must reflect an unflagging devotion to ensuring that everyone gets these basic things that they deserve: Healthcare, an education, a place to live, and a job.



These are the elements called out in FDR’s “Second Bill of Rights,” but this nation’s progress on this vision was halted after he died. Maybe it was because we hadn’t learned Dr. King’s message yet. Certainly we were all distracted by McCarthyism and the Soviet “Iron Curtain” once WWII was over, and that de-humanizing fascist “hatred of the other” mentality is what we still need to defeat. Let’s try generating some compelling love and understanding that brings the people to the polls and vote the corrupt, incompetent child known as #3Peached and his political party out of office. We can beat them on the battlefield of love, so let’s draw them out to that arena.





Islanders’ Voice Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. article



Lawrence O’Donnell



FDR’s second bill of rights






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