DeFrates column: True conservatives should stop turning a blind eye
June 13, 2018
Excuse me, rational conservatives, could you speak up, please? True valuers of life and those who celebrate fiscal conservatism, we need you to be loud now, thank you. No one can hear you all the way in the back with your head in the sand.
You got your Supreme Court seats, with maybe even more on the way, and the foundation of Roe v. Wade is being summarily chipped away.
You got your tax reform. Sort of.
And you know there's … something, going on with immigration.
For many family-first, thoughtful American conservatives, these were three huge reasons that you held your nose and voted for Trump while admittedly disliking much about him. And while I may disagree about some of those positions, they are opinions legitimately filtered through your life experience and worldview — it's why we have two parties.
But since the election, and the celebration of those victories, your voices have been strangely absent from the national discourse. In casual conversation with my own family and friends, I have found again and again that many conservatives are completely unaware of any policy developments, domestic or international, which do not directly fall into the three categories above. And even within those broad categories, most are unable to provide specifics about current executive actions or legislation.
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I know this is not unusual to Americans in both parties who live in the constant state of cognitive dissonance where we profess a total lack of trust for our elected officials, yet spend almost no energy paying attention to what exactly they are doing.
Yet, there have been so many changes. Is every single one of you "just fine" with all of them? It's understandable if you've gotten behind. Fox News has not done a very thorough job of reporting on relevant policy developments. Their headlines seem to spend more time trying to undermine Democrats, political correctness and fanning the flames of fearing thy neighbor as much as possible.
But the country really needs you to stay informed. Your party needs a wave of rational moderation. Without the steady voices and votes of constituents who value the traditional tenets of the party (not the Fox and Friends/Hannity version), the GOP is becoming deeply rotten and falling far from its base.
Republicans, think, is this really what you want? To be the "Trump Party"?
A party that supports forcibly separating children from their parents, yet has spent decades building legislation around the stability of families and claims to value the life of the helpless above all else?
A party that smugly stands behind a president who hands out nepo-tastic pardons without rhyme or reason, yet claims to hate celebrity politics and believes everyone should pay the consequences for their actions regardless of social tribulation?
A party that hush-hushes any reference to their president's multiple failed marriages and self-admitted sexual assault, yet claims that marriage should be very clearly defined and revered above all else?
A party that was having a fit about the over-reach of Obama's executive actions for eight years, yet now, as the president casually signs order after order about policies both domestic and international, they remain silent?
In the primaries and in mid-term elections, you have what may be a last chance to take back your own party.
I'm not asking you, conservatives, to change your beliefs, or vote against your conscience, but I am begging you to speak up for yourselves. Your emperor has no clothes, and he is leading you cheerfully to a political point of no return. Get involved, find a news source that reports on legislation, not just "politics," vote for candidates who exemplify the values you actually hold and who will not kowtow to the twisted new normal of the (not so) GOP.
Lindsay DeFrates needs the help of a few social media giants to make this stick. If they have a sexier sounding word that could mean the same thing, that would be fine, too. Lindsay can be reached at http://www.roaringforkwriter.com.