The Republican Party no longer deserves its name or its history. It has no claim to serving a Republic or living up to the legacy of Abraham Lincoln. It should be renamed to reflect its real priorities. It should be called by the name its earned: the Party of Death.
The Party of Death has elevated the wishes of a small group of gun-worshippers above the needs of the majority. Its devoted to blocking federal gun control legislation, ensuring that enraged white men armed with easily obtained military-grade weapons will continue to kill us off by the dozen while we try to simply live our lives in peace at malls, movie theaters, concerts and everywhere else gunmen have rained down death.
If the Party of Death were honest, their campaign commercials would feature video of the country’s better-known massacres and the voice of an old white man intoning, “America: Live free. And die young.”
And it’s not just guns. The Party of Death embraces morbidity from multiple directions. In the week of the attacks in El Paso and Dayton, 12 billion tons of water melted off the Greenland ice sheet as the Arctic sweltered—yes, sweltered—in yet another record heat wave.
But that’s hardly the only front in the Party of Death’s war on life. Look at health care. A study from just last month determined there were 15,000 preventable deaths in the states where governors refused to accept Medicaid funding under Obamacare. No prizes for guessing which political party each and every last one of those governors belonged to. But this should come as no surprise, since at every turn the Party of Death, as a consensus policy, has for decades now sought to make healthcare more expensive or even impossible for many people to obtain.
While there’s been a tinge of death-wish fatalism in the Republican makeup since at least the Cold War era, when the conservatives military leaders spoke of “survivable” nuclear conflict with the USSR, the GOP didn’t really fully lose its mind until its talk radio and cable TV propagandists took over its agenda. For-profit outrage factories like Fox News force the political equilibrium point between right and left rightward, then rightward again to keep viewers infuriated and glued to their TVs until it’s time to pull the lever for Trump.
How we got here, however, is now much less important than the urgent matter of protecting ourselves from the Party of Death. The first step in that fight is naming the nature of the threat.