The New Rebels Are on the Right
The GOP can and must appeal to the freedom-loving, rebellious side of young voters.
February 16, 2009 - 12:00 am
Consider this fawning post by University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley Dean James Perry, linked on the university’s main web page next to the large advertisement for The Vagina Monologues (hat tip to English Professor Malcolm Allen).
Dean Perry’s verbal boot-licking should appall any self-respecting, independent-minded young person.
Dean Perry is the establishment. We are the rebels. And we need to tap into the rebellious nature of our students.
We need to tell them about something they value: freedom. And we need to do it in a genre they relate to — satire.
The other side has given us plenty to work with, like the Demi Moore pledge video of pontificating celebrity narcissists. And the hokey, pseudo-country/multicultural Born Again American pap put out by Norman Lear.
We’ve got the talent and the intellectual powerhouses. I know plenty of conservative Ph.D.s frozen out of tenure-track positions at universities, and plenty of writers and artists who can’t sell their work to the outlets controlled by the liberal publishers and producers. (Shameless self-promotion here: I’ve got several manuscripts.)
We need to put these on the shows that young people watch.
Jonas Stankovich, a college student blogging at the New Majority, suggests that Republicans follow the lead of Republican economist Lawrence Lindsay and take their message to such arenas as The Daily Show.
That’s one good idea from the New Majority website.
But we don’t have to give up our social principles.
We just need the opportunity to expose the power-grabbing, fascistic traits of the current administration. It’s an administration that wants to take away our freedom to earn and use our money the way we want (the “stimulus” bill), the freedom to listen to and express opinions (the revival of the “Fairness” Doctrine, Obama’s public ridicule of conservative talk show hosts), the freedom to defend ourselves (assaults on the Second Amendment, aid to dangerous Palestinian refugees, the closing of Guantanamo), and the freedom to live (abortion on demand, rationed government health care).
We need to get this message out. It’s all about values.
This is where the Republicans have failed. They have focused too much on the short term and not enough on culture and education.
The left, on the other hand, began its project in 1962, when the SDS founders meeting in Port Huron outlined their strategy of infiltrating the universities. They won hearts and minds through a long process — not by compromising or looking to the short term. Barack Obama simply stepped into the position that had been prepared for him. The process began before he was born.
It’s always been a culture war. To ignore that fact is to continue with the strategies that have failed.