Thursday, December 15, 2005

The White Buffalo Is Stillborn

For years now (actually decades), I -- like most liberal Democrats -- have been waiting for the mythical White Buffalo to be born. Native American tribes of the plains believed that when an albino buffalo was born, it portended great things. For libDems, the equivalent would be a new Age of Aquarius, in which the collective consciousness was raised and progressivism was again on the march.

If ever there were a time when this SHOULD be happening, it would be now. We have a bona fide fascist in the White House, his faction has taken over both houses of Congress and is on its way (or so they say) to remolding the Supreme Court in der Fuhrer's image.

But is a new progressive golden age on the horizon? You may see some sign of it, but I don't. I think that the Democratic Left is closer to extinction than the American bison has ever been.

It isn't gonna happen, people, so we might as well wake up. And smell the bacon before it burns. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered citizens find ourselves in special peril. And the poor take it in the shorts again and again.

Once upon a grand old time, progressives grew the government so big, they thought it could serve them forever. They would implement -- by force -- the wonderful new world as they saw it. It seems to have done little besides get everybody else so pissed-off that they joined forces in a holy war against us. Conservatives once claimed they wanted to dismantle the leviathan State. But then they decided to do something else. Tearing a page out of our playbook, they wrestled the State out of our hands and made it their own.

Feels real good, being on the receiving end of tyranny, does it not? Maybe we're getting exactly what we deserved. You cannot legislate a change in hearts or minds; that must be done patiently, painstakingly, one heart and mind at a time. But that was too slow for us, and too uncertain. Nor have we learned our lesson, as it is still the pipe-dream of most of my fellow liberals that we will rise again, storm the Bastille with our pitchforks and take it all back for ourselves.

Again, I say, it isn't gonna happen. The only question is, did our wrongheaded approach to implementing our will do so much damage that our cause is irreparable, or do we still have a chance -- if we change directions?

The Right-Wing theocrats are on the verge of taking all the marbles. But I remember sitting in a public-school classroom where the teacher ACTUALLY TOLD US that evolution disproved the existence of God. In fact, over the years of my taxpayer-funded education, I heard that more times than I could count. Small wonder that many of my classmates grew up with a burr under their saddle. Now they want to teach that the earth is flat -- and they want to use taxpayer funds to do it. Wonder where they got THAT idea?

If our principles are right, then we must PERSUADE others of it. There simply is no shortcut. That's true with regard to gay rights, to feminism, to civil rights for racial minorities and to just about everything else we hold near and dear. It is now those on the Right who show an unwillingness to engage in meaningful debate. They are making plu-perfect fools of themselves -- but we have lost the right to criticize them for it.

How many times have liberals thrown the "fascist" label at conservatives? It's like the fable of the Kid Who Cried Wolf. Now we really DO have our own, homegrown fascist regime in charge, and we can't get anybody to believe it. Maybe that's what happened to our White Buffalo; the wolf is eating its guts out.

Make absolutely no mistake about it. The Radical Right is so well-funded, and its minions so numerous, that WE WILL NEVER TURN THE TABLES. One wag, commenting on a post in one of the many blogs I visit each day, joked that to boost his political viability, John Edwards would oversee the public stoning of a gay couple. I'm sorry I couldn't laugh; if that were to happen, it wouldn't surprise me in the least.

John Edwards, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton and most of the rest of the Democratic Ring of Power are nothing but a pack of cowards. They have betrayed GLBT Americans, along with just about everybody else any self-respecting Democrat would stand up for. The only Presidential candidate worth a second look, in 2004, was Michael Badnarik. But when he showed up at a debate to present the Libertarian point of view, he was led away in handcuffs.

The only chance this country ever has to see a new dawn of liberty and justice rests in the cuffed hands of the Libertarian Party. In order to unshackle those hands, we all need to pull together. The Democratic Party is only a hollow shell of its former self. We must argue on behalf not only of OUR rights, or of OUR freedom, but of EVERYBODY'S. Not only is this the only argument that will ever capture the hearts and minds of the American people, but if it is not able to do so, then all is lost for every American.

I was a Democrat because I believed in their principles -- NOT simply because I am a woman and happen to be gay. I will be a Libertarian for the sake of those same principles. Libertarians disavow the use of force against others. They also rejoice whenever they see freedom, and wherever it may blossom.

The Democrats in Congress cannot disguise the fact that they hope the elections in Iraq do not succeed. I think (as do most Libertarians) that the war is a wasteful and duplicitous sham. But if I'm wrong, and real liberty does result in Iraq, then this is one time I won't mind being wrong one bit. I don't think the Iraqis are ready for democracy. Come on, Iraq, and prove me wrong! Like most Libertarians, regardless of how much I have hated this war, I would gladly put all partisan feeling aside at the sight of real Iraqi freedom. Hold those purple fingers high!

The Left had better remember -- and soon -- that the same Western, Judeo-Christian civilization that the terrorists want to destroy was the very birthplace of liberalism. I don't want some radical mullah standing before Congress screaming for my head! (As our duly-elected officials sit there, gravely nodding their heads and doing their best to be "tolerant of diversity.") I'm sorry if that doesn't sound "multicultural" to you. Why is it we can only see fascism when it comes from the Republican Party?

I want America to succeed. I want democracy and freedom to survive and thrive anew. I want sane and civil discourse to return to the political arena. I want ALL Americans -- Black and White, male and female, gay and straight, rich and poor -- to prosper in peace and safety.

The government must be whittled back down to the minimum necessary. Then it can hurt nobody. Those now-extinct principled Right-Wingers were right when they said we ought to "starve the beast." That beast has run amok, and its devouring everything and everyone in its path. It is unrealistic to think that it will ever be "tamed" to serve the interests of progressives again -- or that, even if it could be, the Radical Right would not be able to easily take it away from us again.

Bill O'Reilly and the usual cast of Christmas-defending dimwits can do nothing to save Christmas. For the sake of Christmas future, as well as Yuletide of the present and the past, let's take a new look at the true message of liberty and justice for all. It comes from a seemingly-obscure corner: the small and embattled but growing Libertarian Party. But didn't the Prince of Peace come from an obscure corner, too?

Let's gather, once again, around the manger where Jesus Christ was born. And let us never forget that it was also the birthplace of the very freedom, equality and justice for every human being that we treasure. For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health and very literally 'til death do us part, we and our Western, Judeo-Christian civilization are of one flesh. Let no one put it asunder.


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