Mr. Gorbachev, Tear Down Half This Wall
A celebration of the great "moderate" events in (fake) history.
May 13, 2009 - 12:00 am
As all principled Democrats are pounding their uncompromising collective fist on the GOP’s big tent, demanding that conservatives compromise their principles, and even Colin Powell has joined their unanimous opinion about the glaring lack of diverse opinions among Republicans, conservatives are clearly left with no other choice than to move their big tent down from the moral high ground to where the progressive majority is, so it can be better monitored by the media and have easy access for morally disabled persons with diverse opinions.
Everyone knows that this country was built by great moderates who made history by compromising their ideals and principles. So let us take a moment and look back at great compromises throughout history. This is now the correct narrative. Please update your past.
The great compromiser Ronald Reagan was always careful not to offend people. In June 1987 he famously issued the following moderate, inoffensive statement: “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down half this wall.” This made everyone happy and didn’t drive moderates out of the party, which could have happened if he were to make a more categorical demand. Fearing he would alienate centrists, Reagan also changed the original characterization of the USSR as “the evil empire” to a more moderate “misunderstood commonwealth,” for which he was forever extolled by the White House press corps.
In 1862, another Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, was also working hard to reach a middle ground between pro-slavery and anti-slavery factions in his party. Aware of the need to get along and compromise on sensitive issues, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, in which he gave slaves freedom from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, after which time they needed to return to their masters.
In 1773, a group of about 200 agitated Bostoners, some wearing Native American costumes and whooping war chants, marched two by two to the wharf, descended upon three ships, and dumped half of the crates with tea into the harbor. The rest of the crates they took home, forming a long line at the customs house to pay the proper tax set by the British crown. Most colonists applauded their compromise and it didn’t antagonize London enough to pass the Intolerable Acts, which might potentially close the Port of Boston.