Having grown up in a Latino family on the border, I have always been around people who, more often than not, supported Democrats for any office. I even interned for Congressman Solomon Ortiz (D, TX-27)–a fact that I’m hesitant to mention for idealogical reasons, but in the end it was a great learning experience for me. I learned a lot about speaking with donors and helping constituents, organizing events, fundraisers, and of course a lot about political ideology. Though, the best learning experience was still was having grown up with my family.
As I mentioned earlier, nearly everyone in my family is a “yellow-dog” Democrat and, with the exception of my mom, thinks that Republicans are just a bunch of old, rich, white people, while Democrats are the “party that cares”. The interesting thing is that even though most of my family will literally vote for a dog with a sign saying “Democrat” on it, (as illustrated by the Nancy Pelosi “lap dogs” they vote to send to Washington) my family agrees with me on a majority of political issues, and in several cases are even further right than I am!
Of course, whenever I point this out to them, they like to kind of pretend that it never happened, but one of the biggest idealogical differences that I get them on is the fact that the Democratic Party has turned “safety nets” into “social ceilings” and are actually holding minority communities down. What’s worst about this is that every time a minority votes for a liberal Democrat, they are shooting themselves in the foot and allowing them to perpetuate a cycle that keeps us down for generations.
For the greater part of the past century, Latinos and other minorities have been voting for Democrats, especially in legislative races. In this time, how much improvement have we seen on the border community or in inner-city communities? Most of the improvements have been natural, such as population increase and perceived income increases due to inflation. Once we get past all of the money that Democratic congressmen have “bestowed” upon the people on border and inner-city districts, we see sobering facts:
– the unemployment rate remains higher than the state and national averages,
– the standard of living is drastically lower,
– the median income at any family size is much lower,
– the number of adults obtaining a college degree is significantly lower,
– the high school retention rate is abysmal, and
– access to medical care is hard to find, forget whether or not its affordable.
None of these statistics have changed Latino communities for the better, even after decades of Democrats “helping” the needy and “caring” for the poor.
I, of course, use words like “bestow”, “helping”, and “caring” in quotations when referring to liberal Democrats because, sadly, the local media helps them blind the local community into thinking that all of that money they bring to their respective districts is just God-sent. If all of this money was so great for us, you think our districts would be significantly better off than we are now, and you’d definitely hope that after decades of similar policies we’d be WAY BETTER OFF. Once again, the facts remain that liberal policies have done nothing good for minority communities in the past century.
Naturally, I have always heard my grandparents speak highly of President John F. Kennedy and how he helped all Americans; this was especially true during the 2008 presidential campaign when their true reservations about Barack Obama began to come out. They had told me about how they believed Kennedy when he spoke out on foreign policy, and how Obama seemed too detached from the importance of a strong military that can readily defend our freedoms and way of life. As we watched Barack Obama’s acceptance speech at the 2008 DNC, my grandparents scoffed every time he attempted to sound like he would be a tough president against our enemies. For the most part, my grandparents’ assertions of Obama’s lack of gravity on this issue turned out to be for the most part true as President Obama is more open to accepting dictators like Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez as his political brethren than he is of acknowledging that conservative Americans right here in the very country that elected him to its highest office are in fact his fellow countrymen and neighbors!
Aside from revering President Kennedy’s fortitude when dealing with Communists, my grandparents have also frequently quoted his inaugural address that he ended by telling Americans to “ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.” This valuing of hard work and encouraging everyone to contribute to society without feeling entitled to anything is something that has been distorted by and lost in the Democratic Party. I feel cliché saying this, but this is not my grandfather’s or father’s Democratic Party! My grandpa is nearly 70 years old and still works as a welder–in fact, he was “Employee of the Year” for two consecutive years not too long ago. I may never have the intense work ethic of my grandpa, but I definitely appreciate, admire, and respect it! Without this work ethic, my family would have been drastically different–and not for the better. Unfortunately, the modern-day Democratic Party is run by liberal elitists who do not have this work ethic and surely do not appreciate it or understand why anyone would want the dignity of labor. The answer is simple: everyone wants a better life for themselves and their children. If President Kennedy had tried to run for president in 2008, he would have been thrown out of his own party by his own family, and they sure would not want him saying anything near what he said in his inaugural address. The Democratic Party has gone from a diverse coalition that incorporated aspects of American conservatism to a party that has stolen a motto from UPS; they now beg us to ask ourselves, “What can your country do for you?” In doing so, the modern-day Democratic Party has obviously been hijacked by elitist ideologues who see vocal conservatives, concerned citizens, anyone who believes in hard work, and moderately-conservative members in their own party as obstacles to overcome even if it means by completely ignoring them, bribing them, or throwing them and their genuine concerns “under the bus.”
When we stop looking at political affiliations and look at actual policies and ideologies, we see free-market solutions are the only way to unleash the natural entrepreneurial spirit of the Latino community and allow for ALL Texans to be free to prosper to the best of their abilities. “Safety nets” and most social programs are morally right ideas on paper, but only for those who sincerely and truly need the help and cannot provide for themselves such as the elderly who have worked their entire lives and already put in their contributions to society as well as anyone who is mentally or severely medically impaired. Unfortunately, liberal Democrats believe that EVERYONE is entitled to something–even if they’ve contributed nothing and have no intent to contribute. This sort of mentality has abused decent proposals to the point that they’ve created “social ceilings” that stifle ingenuity and keep minorities on the lower rungs of the social ladder. If you don’t believe me, then stop hanging out with all of those liberal elitists and get down to the border where I grew up or into the inner-cities and see that for all of the money you have thrown at us, we have seen little to no REAL improvement. At their very core, most people genuinely want the dignity of labor in a free-market society, and as conservatives, we have a responsibility to reach out to others and show them that conservatism is the only way to bust out of a cycle of dependency and be as successful and free as you want.