It's my general view that Democrats have a LOT of room for improvement when it comes to naming things. "Defund the police" is one of our most recent messaging fiascos, but it by no means stands alone.
One particularly annoying thing we do is sacrifice important words. For example, in a bizarre ironic twist, we've all but ceded the word "freedom" to GOP fascists.
I believe "freedom" should be a cornerstone of liberal messaging, including the freedom to bear arms. (As an aside, we will NOT win the war of words over 2nd Amendment rights. Stop talking about it.)
Another thing we do is play nice, in the interest of civility. Which means we leave a whole shitload of words on the table unused. It also means we don't tell hard truths. I say screw that. We gotta start calling a spade a spade.
Our GOP brethren don't engage in misinformation, they lie. They don't support gerrymandering, they cheat. They're not pro-life, they're pro-fetus. And they're bigots. They gleefully push policies that disadvantage women, black and brown people, and gays. From environment racism to voter suppression to unequal pay to unequal school funding to discrimination in healthcare, they're not color-blind, they're actively working to perpetuate discrimination. Lying, cheating bigots. It's not that complicated.
But it's not enough to be against creepy people and the creepy things they do. We have to be FOR things that are simple and memorable. Here are my thoughts.
First, we're for democracy, the foundation of equality and justice. I've been advocating that the Democratic Party rebrand as The Democracy Party for almost a year now. Some people are taking notice, but not enough. We need to get on the stick, because nothing matters more than preserving democracy. If we don't have fair voting, we don't have anything. Our name should say what we stand for. Democracy is the right positioning. To far too many people, the Democratic Party has become a joke.
Second, we're for freedom. That means doing what we can to make sure people can do whatever they hell they want, as long as they're not hurting another living, breathing human being. Pretty simple. Women must be free to decide whether to have children or not.
Beyond that, Democrats and the Democracy Party stand for fairness. That means government does whatever it can to make sure the playing field is level. That's a tough job, but it still has to be done.
We're running out of time. We need to come together on ideas and language we can use effectively to combat the rise of fascism in America.