Democrats have one big, glaring downfall when it comes to the war against Republican obstruction and denial of the democratic process. It’s something that each one of you have control over. It’s something Democrats criticize their leaders for doing.
It’s called caving.
Democrats cave when they feel defeated. This is most obvious online, when the day after a Republican “victory,” Democrats are silent. They don’t troll the Right en masse as the Right does when a Democrat wins something. They go into hiding to lick their wounds.
This is pretty human, and there’s normally nothing wrong with it. In fact, the failure to become rabid trolls is a good thing. It’s important for Democrats to stay focused on reality and issues, instead of becoming radical extremists in reaction to failure (see Republicans for where this can lead if left unchecked by leadership in early stages).
However, this propensity for civility that leads Democrats into silence or worse yet attacking their own needs to be countered right now, because it only leads to failure. There’s too much at stake for failure.
The resistance is about country and people. People who don’t have a voice. People who when they speak up, are bullied and attacked.
So you must all be that voice right now. You must not go into hiding. You must not be silent.
You must fight even harder now that Democrats “lost” special elections in red districts in red states – that is to say, the election results are actually good news for Democrats and Republican leadership knows this.
These special election losses are consistent with a strong possibility that Democrats can take back the House, But they’ll have to fight. Which means you will have to fight.
Our elections are still under threat by Putin, and one of the tactics Moscow uses against the U.S. is cyber warfare. Paid trolls. Online messaging.
So get organized.
Stay focused on being civilized, on being nonviolent, on being righteous.
Martin Luther King Jr. led protests over and over again in which the people participating faced terrifying violence, but they stayed peaceful. They didn’t give up. They didn’t retreat.
Tuesday night was not a win for Republicans. Disappointment over a hard fought battle is an indulgence the Resistance can’t afford. Right now, healthcare for millions of people is at stake. The protection of our minority friends is at stake. The rights of LGBTQ community are at stake. The rights of women are at stake. Good jobs and fair wages are at stake. The working class is at stake. The ability to run a small business with good health insurance is at stake. The stakes are seemingly endless right now.
Our country is at stake.
Use those stakes, whichever issue moves you personally the most, and funnel it into the fight. Get back online or in dialogue with friends and family and don’t be silenced because someone is gloating. Tell them it makes you sad to see people gloating over a loss for the people, a win for Russia.
Republicans refuse to take any steps to protect the U.S. during this ongoing attack from Russia. They crafted a bill in the dark to take healthcare away from millions of people. The White House is holding briefings off camera and with no audio. These things are not normal; they are a threat to our free society.
Stand firm, keep your eyes on the prize of who we can be, who we must be. Imagine the country we can be and don’t let go of that dream. Then, insist upon every little step forward to that dream. This was the lesson of Barack Obama, who keeps telling the people they have the power.
You have the power. Use it relentlessly.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.