God Heal America

IF YOU’VE EVER WONDERED WHICH SIDE OF THE FENCE YOU SIT ON, THIS IS A GREAT TEST!

So begins a post that appeared on my Facebook page. The “great test” lists nine comparisons the author draws to distinguish Republicans from Democrats. 

A distant relative of mine, a stranger until we connected on Facebook, tagged me on the post.  He lives in the US, and I recently moved from there to Israel, so the chances of our meeting sometime soon are remote. That’s probably for the best.  Meanwhile, here’s the first comparison

IF A REPUBLICAN DOESN’T LIKE GUNS, HE DOESN’T BUY ONE. IF A DEMOCRAT DOESN’T LIKE THEM, HE WANTS ALL GUNS BANNED.  

Facts: I am a Democrat who doesn’t own a gun. I DO NOT SUPPORT banning all guns. I DO SUPPORT gun regulations like the US has for seatbelts and drinking and driving.  My Dad, also a Democrat, was an ardent sportsman and a member of the National Rifle Association. He cancelled his membership out of disgust at the way the NRA celebrated unrestricted gun ownership. Here’s comparison #2.

IF A REPUBLICAN IS A VEGETARIAN, HE DOESN’T EAT MEAT. IF A DEMOCRAT IS A VEGETARIAN, HE WANTS ALL MEAT PRODUCTS BANNED FOR EVERYONE. 

Facts:  My wife of 35 years, a Democrat and a vegetarian, has never condemned my meat-eating ways. I have other Democratic vegetarian friends, some of them downright vegans(!), who have never threatened to deprive me of my chicken or hamburgers.

IF A REPUBLICAN IS DOWN AND OUT, HE THINKS ABOUT HOW TO MAKE A SITUATION BETTER. A DEMOCRAT WONDERS WHO’S GOING TO TAKE CARE OF HIM. 

Questions: During the Trump-led trade war with China, didn’t huge chunks of cash prop up American farmers? Or did Democratic farmers receive bailouts and Republican farmers think they actually earned that money? As for the record-breaking hand-outs going to needy folks of all political persuasions during the pandemic, why haven’t Republicans spurned that form of socialism and opted to make their situations better on their own? 

IF A REPUBLICAN DOESN’T LIKE A TALK SHOW HOST, HE SWITCHES CHANNELS. DEMOCRATS DEMAND THAT THOSE THEY DON’T LIKE BE TAKEN OFF THE AIR.  

Questions: Rather than simply switching channels, didn’t our Republican president post a video of himself “beating” CNN and grotesquely mimic a disabled reporter?  Doesn’t he continue to call out journalists trying to set the record straight as purveyors of fake news? What about his demeaning everyone from the late John McCain to the now washed-up John Bolton, simply because their views differed from his?

The great test’s other comparisons skewer Democrats’ stands on homosexuality, separation of church and state, and health care in similarly clever, shallow ways, setting up the punchline:

IF A REPUBLICAN READS THIS, HE’LL FORWARD IT SO HIS FRIENDS CAN HAVE A LAUGH. A DEMOCRAT WILL DELETE IT BECAUSE HE’S OFFENDED. 

Facts: This Democrat did not delete the test from his FB page. He has shared it here for readers’ consideration in light of the current state of America.

Opinion: The test’s author seems to favor drawing battle lines rather than fostering reasonable debate. So be it. Long live creativity, humor, and the First Amendment!!!

As for my cousin, he and I are better off not meeting to discuss the issues if he continues to insist that President Trump is a great president who has served America well after

dismissing Covid-19 as the common flu;

undermining medical professionals;

turning a simple face mask into a divisive political symbol, and

fomenting more hate on both sides of the so-called fence during the Black Lives Matter protests.

Indeed, I see no point in debating any American who relies on hucksters and fake news and who buys into any new conspiracy theory that comes down the pike without doing proper research.

God heal America.

Here in Israel, people are so consumed with the economic turmoil Covid-19 has wrought, coupled with the government’s meltdown, that American politics have not come up much lately. If they did, I would do my best to avoid discussing Donald Trump, as many Israelis, like my cousin, believe the man walks on water.  

Meanwhile, as a new citizen of Israel, I do not plan to visit my birthplace any time soon. I do plan to vote in the 2020 presidential election by absentee ballot.

I go to bed at night hoping for a Democratic landslide.

About the Author
Filmmaker and children's book author Marc Kornblatt is the producer/director of the award-winning documentaries DOSTOEVSKY BEHIND BARS, STILL 60, and LIFE ON THE LEDGE, and the web series MINUTE MAN and ROCK REGGA. He and his wife made Aliyah in 2019 and now live in Tel Aviv where he produced OLEH HADASH, a web series about his experience as a new citizen of Israel, and THE NARROW BRIDGE PROJECT, a pandemic-inspired series.
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