The Democratic and Republican political parties in America have, over the past few years, become caricatures in their almost comic and sometimes even grotesque posturing, one against the other. The two labels have taken on associations and stereotypes that border on the heart of comedy itself. Either word can now evoke gut reactions instantly of rage, revulsion, or a festival of other emotional upheavals.
The word Democrat and the word Republican have become receptacles of assumption and automatic insult, generally exaggerated and very often unmerited by the opposition.
In terms of politics, the HBO saga, Game of Thrones has nothing on us politically in The United States. Calling someone a Democrat or Republican can now be the most extreme affront one can summon, and there continue to be ridiculous and oversimplified associations that gradually lose their significance, rendering everything either black or white, with no middle ground left. What does it mean to “drive like a Republican” or “sneeze like a Democrat?”
We’re becoming essentially two separate countries, each looking down its nose at the other. No foreign and enemy power could so successfully have divided us in a conflict that has perhaps been bubbling since the end of the American Civil War in 1865. The once vibrant red, white and blue I remember from my childhood (1950’s, NOT the 1860’s, thank you very much), seem now to be fading to a dull, lifeless gray, where there is no more contrast or compromise. Our game has lost its once shared purpose or what’s best for the nation as a whole in favor of something like a sports event played for points and “winning” but from which no one really gets a trophy or honor for patriotism in favor of the country itself. JB