I’m a Recovering Democrat

Hello.  My name is Brent and I’m a recovering Democrat.

I’ve always voted democratic even though I’m conservative about some things. In fact, I could have been a Republican if it weren’t for some very specific stances they’ve taken that I cannot accept. I simply cannot be a part of denying the basic human rights of people to be who they are. Of course, there are things I really don’t like about the Democrats too, like those super-duper delegates of theirs. Their votes are just so much more super than mine, and finding the people with the best, most valuable votes is really super important in a democracy, you know.

In spite of my frustrations with both parties, at some point, I just chose a side. Over time, Democrats have gotten worse and worse, but I can’t leave them because the Republicans have too. It’s just disgusting at this point but I don’t feel like I have any other option.

I’m pretty sure I’m not alone. We all tend to stand behind our chosen parties no matter what. Even in the face of absolutely absurd behavior, we’re quick to justify our stance with “well, at least we’re not as bad as them.” I loved the Ohio voter who in 2016 said of Trump, “I’m voting for the Conservative Party, and if he just happens to be the jackass leadin’ that mule train, that’s fine by me.” Her honesty was refreshing. It made me realize I was no different. I just had a different jackass disappointing leader. And just like her, I had no other option.

I even turned my kids against Republicans for most of the 2016 election, but then when I heard my rhetoric coming back at me from their mouths I saw myself for the first time. I realized I needed a reality check. Was I really going to turn my elementary school kids into Republican bashing Democrats before they even understood the issues? I knew I had to be honest with them. But before I could be honest with them, I had to be honest with myself. Some Democrats are liars and scoundrels too. I just ignored their transgressions as the lesser of two evils. “It’s just that I believe one side lies more and in worse ways,” I’d told my kids. Really? This is what I’m teaching them?

I want to teach my kids that we vote for men and women we respect, trust, and mostly agree with. I wish I could teach them that we vote for people with integrity who will actually do the hard work of honest negotiation and compromise. But how is that going to happen when we only have two options? How is that going to happen when we elect the most extreme of our parties. Is it really impossible in this nation, supposedly the greatest democracy in history, for us to have reasonable leaders? Are we doomed to the same nonsense over and over?  Argh!  It is absolutely infuriating.

But after all these revelations, and all this soul searching, what am I going to do next time? You guessed it.  I’ll probably just vote the Democratic ticket because there won’t be a better option. Crap. I’m getting nowhere.  Damn, Democrats. I wish I knew how to quit you.