They literally wrap themselves in flags (at least flag pins) but if you were to make a checklist of all of America’s founding and ongoing principles, as a democracy and society, you’d find a substantial Republican checklist of things they despise.
It’s kind of sad that the public is unfazed by how anti-American the GOP has become, we almost expect it to be expressed on any issue or after any event. Instead of outrage though, the reactions is more, “Yep, knew they’d say something like that.”
Here are a few basic pillars of America that Republicans adamantly oppose:
A Government of the People, By the People and For the People
The GOP made the 2012 election so much about taking the right to vote away from Americans. Make that, Americans who are less likely to vote Republican. With all facts proving that there is no issue of voter fraud that needs to be addressed, Republican governors and legislatures used an ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Counsel, aka Plutocrats R Us) devised template of legislation that required voters to show ID at polling places or be stripped of their right to vote. Legitimate studies were unanimous in illustrating that the impact of this was solely to prevent minorities, the poor, students and other Democratic-leaning voters from voting. This is about as anti-American as a political party could be, legislating away people’s right to vote…yet this campaign continues from the GOP today with no apology.
From the Republican perspective, the right to vote requires regulation because it’s dangerous to our society to have a vote in the hands of the wrong person but when it comes to stopping a gun from getting into the wrong hands, Republicans suddenly get religion over the sanctity and purity of that right alone, that it should never be regulated (despite the fact that the 2nd Amendment states that it should be “well regulated”).
In fact, Republicans believe so strongly in American Democracy, that they will stand up against a 90% majority of Americans to protect our democracy. The Republican filibuster of the watered down guns background check bill was actually a middle finger to democracy and 90% of Americans, a stark admission that they only see being in Congress as about serving themselves, their re-election and their political future. The disdain they have shown towards Americans and the betrayal of our democracy they have committed should have made them politically radioactive but thanks to the well honed and well financed marketing savvy of their corporate bosses, many just take for granted that nearly half of the Senate being puppets of the gun industry is just Washington politics.
Half of The Bill of Rights
1st Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
- Republicans want laws establishing and enforcing Christian dogma and doctrines on all citizens no matter their religious beliefs, whether it comes to the issues of abortion, teaching evolution, gay rights, etc. Republicans in North Carolina recently tried to pass a bill declaring Christianity to be the official state religion.
- Republicans have openly opposed the worship of religions other than Christian, primarily the Muslim religion, going so far as to campaign and try to legislate against an Islamic cultural center opening in a previously defunct building because Republicans claimed it was too close to Ground Zero in the 9/11 attacks…and apparently that made a particular zone of New York “For Christians Only”.
- Republicans continue to attack and undermine the press by branding it “liberal”, propose that Americans lose rights for expressing religious views they oppose and were fully supportive of launching militarized police force attacks against Americans who were protesting against their government for redress in the Occupy Wall Street protests.
4th Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
- Republicans supported and continue to support the Bush post-9/11 policy of government spying without warrants on Americans’ emails, cell phone calls, etc. in the name of fighting terrorism.
- Republicans support Stop and Frisk programs, mandatory drug tests for Welfare applicants, and the right of employers to spy on and have access to personal information of their employees
6th Amendment: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.
- Immediately after the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing were caught, a chorus of Republicans came out clamoring for the surviving suspect to be stripped of his 6th Amendment rights and held in Guantanamo indefinitely as an enemy combatant so information can be wrung out of him, because he shared the beliefs of groups that are enemies of America, not because he was actually a member of any such group (the law covering enemy combatants only applies to removing enemies from the battlefield so they can’t do further harm, not for purposes of interrogation).
- Republicans oppose and have opposed criminal trials against any foreign terrorists who commit crimes in the US and want the US to keep all the prisoners at Guantanamo imprisoned indefinitely unless convicted by a military court where 6th Amendment rules don’t apply.
7th Amendment: In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
- Republicans have promoted and legislated the widespread mandatory use of arbitration instead of jury trials over many areas and industries including health care and have passed laws that deny Americans a right to have a jury trial against their health insurance company when claims are denied.
- Republicans promote and pass legislation limiting the ability of trial lawyers to receive payment and even work on contingency as well as install “Loser Pays” laws that threaten any citizen with paying the lawyer bills of whomever they file suit against if they lose (just because someone doesn’t win a case doesn’t always mean they weren’t wronged, it can mean they just didn’t have the evidence needed to prove what truly happened). All of these things would make it more difficult and more threatening for a citizen to file a civil suit (especially against a wealthier, more powerful person or company) while corporations would become more untouchable.
8th Amendment: Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
- Republicans are fervent supporters of using torture whether on foreign suspects or U.S. citizens. In the most recent instance of the Boston Marathon bombing, there have been many calls from Republicans to torture Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to get information from him.
- Republicans are the most vociferous on oppressive laws such as Three Strikes and the use of the death penalty, even expressing that the death penalty be used in cases where no one was murdered.
- Republicans support the use of Black Sites that the CIA used to torture terrorism suspects with such torture tactics as waterboarding.
One could also make the case that Republicans oppose the 2nd Amendment because they oppose what it says in full, that is:
2nd Amendment: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Despite what the ideologues in the GOP and on the Supreme Court have said, the use of commas between the phrase “A well regulated Militia” and “the right of the people to keep and bear arms” connect these statements, they are not separate thoughts or concepts. So if Republicans did not oppose the complete 2nd Amendment, they would have to support that gun ownership is to be well regulated.
The cherry on top of this anti-American Republican sundae is how they have and are trying to strangle our democracy and government in the bathtub (The actual Grover Norquist quote: “Our goal is to shrink government to the size where we can drown it in a bathtub.”). Republicans support the Citizens United decision, the “personhood” of corporations and the unlimited billions they can now spend to try to buy elections. Republicans use the excuse of cutting deficits to destroy Social Security and Medicare and slash programs for the poor, infrastructure repair, etc. Meanwhile, proving that they don’t truly see the deficit as a crisis that needs to be reversed at any cost, they oppose closing tax loopholes that allow the wealthiest to escape paying taxes…and thus paying down our deficit.
Then of course there is their blocking of all progress and most functionality in the Congress and our government.
Republicans may say they love America but instead of a hug, they’ve got America in a choke hold.