BY ANTHONY M. BROWN | I'm resolved. I really am. But lately it has been difficult to regain that sense of hope I had after the 2006 midterm elections.
The promise of a Democratic Congress gave many of us a much needed morale boost, which, after six years with the Bumbling Bush Brigade, seemed like the promise of a new day. It has, unfortunately, turned out to be the same old story.
Example after example of political cowardice has made me question the Democratic Party's ability to successfully engage the conservative Republican machine. Whether it's caving on war funding, failing to confront potentially illegal corporate influence, or falling well short of holding accountable the many individual and business players running roughshod over our Constitution, the Democratic Party needs a good kick in the pants.
And they need it right now!
I never thought I would say this, but I admire the Republican Party – for its ability to bulldoze over any opposition to its diabolical agenda. Imagine if the Democratic leadership said, “We don't care if it is an election year, we are going to impeach Dick Cheney and George W. Bush for lying America into an unjust war and the Republican minority won't stop us!”
Wouldn't it be refreshing to have faith in your party again?
The worst part about this renewed feeling of impotence is that it is entirely our fault. If Democratic voters were as organized, mobilized, and energized as their Republican counterparts, we wouldn't be bitching about what isn't getting done.
We would be writing, calling, and emailing our elected officials, our friends and family, and the businesses that we frequent to tell them what the agenda should be. We would be putting our money where our mouths are and funding projects that create the change we want to see in the world. And finally, we would be holding our elected leaders accountable with our votes, instead of insisting on their holding others accountable for us.
I don't want to play by the GOP's rules, but we are on the threshold of a new era of Democratic rule in our country. The very real possibility exists that we will have a Democrat as the next president of the United States. But it isn't a done deal.
Democrats have been extremely effective at losing the un-losable and if we assume anything about the 2008 presidential election, we have to consider the risk that it will be lost again. It would be naive to think that the Republican spin machine isn't prepared to throw the kitchen sink at whomever the Democratic presidential nominee will be.
If we don't brace ourselves for the inevitable onslaught and stand by our candidate come November, we will once again be looking at four years of Republican control, and most definitely at an irretrievably conservative Supreme Court. If your civil rights mean anything to you, that reason alone should get you off the couch and on the phone – and on the pavement.
My New Years resolution is simple. I will do everything in my power. I will invest my emotional and financial capital in the causes that I believe in. I will vote for candidates who hold my values dear. And in 2008, I will make noise.
A lot of noise.
Anthony M. Brown helped prepare the brief for Lawrence v. Texas while interning at Lambda Legal in the summer of 2002. He currently heads the Nontraditional Family and Estates Law division at McKenna, Siracusano & Chianese and is the executive director of The Wedding Party. He can be reached at: