For the past four years, I’ve been writing for the VC Reporter. Throughout this journey, I’ve noticed clearly that most Americans are really just libertarians with a bipolar set of values in how they want government to run. For four years, they’ve voted against gay marriage, they’ve voted against liberal drug laws, and they’ve voted down a lot of tax increases. That is until now. Now they want everything that they were told was bad for them. America is changing, and if the Republican Party wants to have any say in the formation of our country’s future, it will have to maintain its moral conviction but change the way it attempts to sway it. It’s time for a New Conservatism.
Too often, conservatives live and die on abortion, gay marriage and drug laws. Ironically, one of those they have no say on any more. Abortion is legal. And not that I disagree with the law; it’s the morality of the issue I disagree with. Abortion is immoral. There. I said it. Inside the womb of the woman is a precious human life, forming and growing. While there are definitely times when the woman’s life must be protected over the child’s life, abortion should never be considered as another form of birth control. But while I feel strongly about this issue, I must say that conservatives, and especially Republican candidates, must back off this issue politically. Roe v. Wade has decided the matter and, in the words of Forrest Gump, “That’s all I have to say about that.” This issue cost the GOP two important elections, elections we could have won, but because of the desire of Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock to be superpro-lifers, they made ridiculous comments that cost them their elections. Had they just said, “We hate abortion but understand the Supreme Court has decided on the issue,” they might have been preparing a political agenda for 2013 to better help their states.
Meanwhile, gay marriage and legalizing marijuana have become the new cool. I remember not too long ago when it looked as if gay marriage wasn’t going to happen. Prop 8 passed by a 52-48 margin. That’s right. California, the hippie liberal home of San Francisco and Berkeley, voted for a very antiquated proposition. Then the courts took the issue and the Supreme Court has agreed to rule on the moral issue of our time. Now, with Maine and Maryland voting for gay marriage through popular vote, one can easily see that the times, they are a-changing.
The same can be said of legalizing marijuana. With Colorado (the most evangelical state in the union, mind you) and Washington voting to support pot smoking for recreational purposes, the writing is on the wall, man. Like, totally, dude. Like, it’s time to be, like, totally less uptight and just be cool, man.
When the church-going states Just Say Yes, it’s time for the GOP to find a new fight.
As we enter 2013, I think it’s time for the GOP and conservatives to reshape the conversation. We can’t be the party pretending to be the church. We can still have this battle for our country’s soul, but it must be fought in our churches and not in our political debating or talking points. We must convince others they are wrong through a moral prism and not a proposition. The battle is over. Secularism won.
Yet the fight isn’t over. Bill Maher once said, “I liked the Republican Party better when it was about old men protecting my money,” and that must be our vision. Americans don’t care about moral issues as much anymore. They are looking at their wallets and are asking, “How does gay marriage help or hurt my family and the bills I have to pay?”
The next generation of GOPers (Chris Christie, Marco Rubio, etc.) must not become Rick Santorum. They must create a new voice and maintain a New Year’s resolution to fight the battle they can win. That battle is a financial one. We must stop the expansion of debt-ridden social programs as a means to an end.
The future is ours to protect. Or else the Mayans might as well have been right.