There’s an iron law in politics: Regardless of the actual reason for a crisis, Republicans will always blame immigrants.
Yes, as we all know, the GOP leaders of Florida could not unleash more death upon their state if they hired snipers to shoot at random cars on the freeway. But they deny that their disdain for vaccines and refusal to mask up has, in any way, led to the completely predictable and totally preventable surge of the Delta variant that is consuming their residents.
No, according to the GOP, it is once again all those filthy Hispanics swarming across the border—and then presumably swimming across the Gulf of Mexico—that are infesting the brave patriots of Florida.
This pathetic deflection is typical of a political party that has to come up with increasingly ludicrous excuses for being so obviously, painfully, and catastrophically wrong about COVID-19. They are furiously scrambling to come up with yet more convoluted explanations of how two plus two equals nine. We can practically hear the self-doubt and see the flop sweat.
But there is one success that Republicans have achieved: they have made liberals despise humanity just as much as they themselves do.
You see, for decades now, progressives have been tripping over themselves trying to establish universal health care, create a fairer tax system, improve public education, and generally help make America a more equitable nation—all of which would do more for the fabled white working class than the GOP agenda of throwing money at billionaires. The reaction of most conservatives has been insults, threats, and self-sabotaging efforts to “own the libs.”
The pandemic was no different. Liberals said, “Wear a mask and practice social distancing, pretty please.” In response, conservatives shrieked, “Freedom!” and rampaged through stores, punching out minimum-wage workers.
And progressives said, “Oh well,” while lecturing one another that we must never make conservatives “feel bad about their awful choices—no matter how many public, violent scenes they cause over health rules, heavily armed protests they organize to intimidate us, and how much the death toll soars.”
Then the vaccine arrived, and liberals said, “Could you please get a shot to save your own lives and do some good for society?” When conservatives sneered, progressives “urged deference and sympathy toward holdouts’ concerns,” ignoring the fact that most of the vaccine-avoidant “who receive respect, empathy, and information directly from reliable sources remain unmoved.”
And still progressives insisted on patience and showing respect toward those who “want all the rights, privileges, and benefits of human community without any sense of obligation to be responsible participants in that community.” Hey, even when top Republican officials compared “vaccine efforts to Nazi-era brown shirts,” and called vaccines “the mark of the beast,” liberals deemed those opinions to be “more important than the health and well-being of our families, because somehow if we kowtow to the worst people in our society, a few will supposedly be nice enough to get vaccinated or wear masks.”
Now, you might ask how we got to the point where the proudly ignorant, the psychotically conspiratorial, and the deliriously sociopathic amassed the power to force the rest of us to accommodate them. Part of the reason is because it seems “to be in our DNA as Americans to cower in the face of an angry (white) minority.” And part of the reason is that conservatives have been extraordinarily successful at denigrating expertise, science, and basic facts as elitism. The result is that progressives “are never, ever to make people who are loudly anti-intellectual, knowingly spew lies and publicly pat themselves on the back for it, feel dumb.” That is considered to be “looking down on nice folks who insist that the Earth is flat and their theories should command the same respect as those of Galileo.”
So even now, when we read “pitiful story after pitiful story of deluded people getting sick … infecting their loved ones, being intubated, and dying,” we are supposed to feel sorry for them. There remains an “insistence that liberal Americans need more empathy for people who are very frank about being motivated by contempt.”
Or is there?
Because at long last, there appears to be a growing impatience with conservatives. After months of cajoling and pleading, we are now “venting about the sheer number of Americans who remain unvaccinated, particularly as hospitals are becoming overwhelmed in states with low vaccination rates.” We are disgusted with Republicans who cheer on those low vaccination rates, as if this were a sick game with no consequences beyond proving one’s own stupidity.
There is simply “no getting around the truth that some considerable number of the unvaccinated are behaving willfully and spitefully,” and that these are individuals who have consciously decided to “inflict a preventable and unjustifiable harm upon family, friends, neighbors, community, country, and planet,” rather than admit that they are wrong.
Keep in mind that the blue states produce 70 percent of the country’s wealth, “and then sees that wealth transferred to support Trump’s America” as they commit gleeful suicide and endanger the rest of us. Soon, Blue America will declare “it’s had enough of being put medically at risk by people and places whose bills it pays.”
You even have nice liberal ladies losing their shit in grocery stores in a manner made popular by conservatives.
So in a bizarre, backward kind of way, maybe Republicans have finally won. They have convinced progressives to embrace the GOP way of thinking. After all, liberals are rapidly becoming angry, hostile, and indifferent to suffering.
And those are truly conservative values.