Monday, November 03, 2008

Election Season Anecdote and the Future of the GOP

Saturday afternoon, I went down to our local grocery store (a very fine store that has been family-owned in Redlands for generations). I parked my car, and was locking the door when a middle-aged white guy in one of those dreadful Scion breadbox cars was inching past me in the lot. It was a very pleasant afternoon in Southern California, so he had his window down. Said middle-aged white guy must have seen the Obama sticker on my car, because he looked at me and proceeded to instruct me to be a "real American" and vote McCain-Palin. I was taken aback and asked him to repeat himself, thinking that I had misheard him. I thought he could have been making a joke, so I smiled. He was not, in fact, joking. He got rather angry and said something about not being patriotic and that no real American would vote for Obama.

Many of you that know me can attest to the fact that I am not a violent (or even angry) person. Unfortunately, I was so angry I could only come up with the cursory, highly uncreative "fuck you" response, but the guy kept yammering on. Finally, I walked closer to car and told him to get out of the car and say it all again. He told me to fuck off and called me a "fag" and drove out of the parking lot.

Seriously? What happened to reasonable Republicans? I know they are out there, but the most vocal wing of their party is really ruining that party's party, so to speak. We've seen the hateful, disgusting speech and actions at the McCain rallies, the public recognition that ensuring all Florida voters get to vote will be McCain's undoing in the state, and public pining for the Bradley Effect by McCain surrogates.
Politics are ugly, and there are certainly over-the-top Obama people out there-- but come on. This incarnation of the GOP-- this "win-at-all-costs", "backs against the wall" kind-- this could end up being worse than the Bush GOP, and I shudder to think of what a Palin-led GOP would look like in the future.

Is it Tuesday yet? Maybe then I can go to the grocery store without being hassled.