Every now and then, a new article (or a repost of an old one) makes the rounds on social media discussing how liberals are more likely to unfriend people over politics both online and in the real world. Usually the context of the post is to show how "intolerant" the left is but what is actually driving this trend?
The first layer is the dry analysis that shows that conservatives tend to already self select, meaning their circle of friends tend to sound just like them:
And that conservative echochamber isn't limited to conservatives' online interactions: It's a reflection of the lack of ideological diversity in their real life relationships. Two-thirds of consistent conservatives told Pew that most of their close friends share their views on government and politics, compared to just over half, or 52 percent, of consistent liberals. For mostly conservatives, 42 percent of their close friends have the same views, while just 26 percent of mostly liberals respondents who said the same.
In other words, white Republican voters seek out other white Republican voters because that's who they're comfortable with.
But the deeper layer is that while conservatives bitch and moan about liberals, only the most brainwashed believe that Obama was working with ISIS and the Mexican drug cartels to set up FEMA concentration camps in abandoned Walmarts. They whine about being persecuted but they know, deep down (and usually not even that deep) that they aren't losing their rights, just their white privilege and while that's terrifying, it's hardly life threatening.
On the other hand, liberals look at what conservatives say they want and are absolutely horrified. We're not talking about what they say in public and in front of news cameras; that's playacting so the media can pretend the GOP is a normal party and that conservatism is healthy and chock full of moderates. No, we're talking about what conservatives say when they think no one is paying attention or when they forget to hide what they really are. When they drop the facade, what's revealed is not a functional human being but a soulless monster fueled by hate.
If this strikes you as crazed hyperbole, you are either painfully ignorant or Chris Cillizza. But I repeat myself.
The left has been saying for decades that the right was devolving into a cesspool of incoherent rage. Long before Trump came down that escalator, it was screamingly obvious that the path the GOP was on led direct to white nationalism and the fascism that comes it with it. We were told to shut the fuck up by a lazy press pushing a "both sides are always equal" narrative.
But when you really listen to what they are saying and really look at what they are doing, what are the core conservative policies?
Hate for the poor - We watched Ron Paul literally say that people without insurance should be left to die if they can't afford the bill for catastrophic illness. The audience of Republicans wildly applauded this.
Conservatives despise the poor unless they are one of them. They support cutting food stamps, school lunches, Medicaid, etc. under the moral pretense that the poor are lazy and should be punished. A lot of it is racism but a lot of it is also simply a hatred of the idea of helping those in need.
Hate for immigrants - Have you listened to how conservatives talk about immigrants? They don't consider them to be people and any solution that keeps them out of the country, up to and including mass murder, is perfectly fine by the right wing. Ann Coulter "joked" that shooting one immigrant at the border might teach the rest to stay away. Rather than be repulsed at the casual advocacy of cold blooded murder, the right celebrated Coulter as a truth telling hero.
Hate for blacks - The number of conservatives that pine for the days of the Confederacy are in the hundreds of thousands, if not millions. They rant and protest and riot to protect statues of slavers and traitors. They engage in the wholesale rewriting of history to erase the stain of slavery from the Civil War to ennoble the South and then insist that slavery wasn't really that bad in the first place.
Again, conservatives despise food stamps, free schools lunches, etc. partly because they hate the poor but also because the idea of their money being used to benefit Those People is intolerable to them.
If nothing else, the 8 years of absolute rage directed at America's first black president and his family should tell you everything you need to know about how much conservatives hate black people.
Hate for the LGBT community - Log Cabin Republicans aside, conservatives resent the hell out of the LGBT community for daring to demand equal rights. Conservatives dress up their umbrage in "freedom of religion" arguments but the bottom line for them always seems to come down to "I want to bully homosexuals without consequence." Deprived of this "right", conservatives feel "persecuted" and this has made them hate the LGBT community more than ever.
Hate for women - From the hypocrisy of the "pro-life" yet also pro-death penalty crowd to the misogyny of the alt-right to the rage conservatives have for the #metoo movement, the loathing conservatives, even conservative women, have for the female population cannot be understated. One of Trump's most appealing aspects was his ability to demean, harass, and sexually assault women and get away with it.
For conservatives, that wasn't a bug of his candidacy, it was a feature.
It goes on like that pretty much forever. Hate for higher education. Hate for the disabled. Hate for Native Americans. Hate for Muslims. Hate hate hate. All of it. Nonstop hate 24/7. Oh, and greed. Me, me, me, mine, mine, mine. This has been going on for years. The article quoted above dates back to 2014. Fast forward to 2018 and guess what? Every single thing we said about the right came true in every detail. The fascism. The white nationalism. The corruption. The twisted theocracy. All of it. And while Trumps defiles the Constitution and Republicans work to end the rule of law, white Republican voters are practically masturbating in the streets with joy. They're wallowing in the suffering of everyone they hate. Not the pretend suffering they went through under Obama but actual suffering from people having their lives destroyed by unjust policies or domestic terrorism. This is not how normal individuals with a functional moral compass act. This is not how civilized people capable of compassion live their lives. This is how deeply broken creatures lacking empathy and humanity inflict pain upon everyone around them.
Tell us again, why in the world would we want to associate with animals like that?
IMPORTANT: The Daily Banter has now officially moved to email format. Join The Banter Newsletter for free here!