Imagine it’s the 1970s and you’re a very confused Lincoln/Eisenhower Republican, upset that “purists” are leaving the party in droves. You argue that the sensible, tolerant right needs to be “united,” because you believe that the GOP is still the party of Emancipation and federalizing the Arkansas National Guard in order to protect black schoolchildren… when, in truth, the GOP has become the party of the Southern Strategy. Racist “Dixiecrats” have flooded into the party, which no longer stands for civil rights.
You were fighting for something that no longer existed. You were actually fighting for the opposite of your values.
The point is, political parties can change. (Not that the GOP recently has: they remain a mob of dangerous demagogues and corporate tools, with the Southern Strategy having metastasized into something truly terrifying.)
The lesson for 2017: Because today’s progressives desperately want to see the left “united,” some liberals are arguing that we ignore the fact that Wall Street and the genocidal neocons have taken over the leadership of the Democratic Party.
BUT IGNORING THAT REALITY WON’T RESTORE OR “UNITE” THE LEFT. (In fact, there’s a good chance that it will finish us off.)
If #DemEnter fails because authoritarian Democratic Party officials continue to shut down democracy at the state and national level, rigging one election after another for unbridled corporatists — 2016 primary, DNC Chair, CADEM Chair — then progressives will have no choice but to #DemExit, en masse. (And make no mistake, that’s just what we’ll do.)
Because the alternative will be to continue offering our support to a formerly liberal party comprised of climate-fracking, ocean-drilling, bloody Wall Street neocons who have demonstrated, time and again, that they are utterly hostile to democracy, the environment, and human rights.
And unconditionally supporting the far-right, Brand D (whatever they’re masquerading as, with their hollow Identity Politics) isn’t exactly the best way to revive the left.
Only reforming the party will do that.