If my uncle Al were alive today, even he would be taken aback by the brazen actions of the Republican Party. Al was a small business owner in Sauk City, who believed in the common good while supporting Republican business policies.
Today's Republican Party initiatives are not just an exercise in conservatism, but, instead, a move to the extreme right, an attack on democratic institutions and blatant disregard of the personal rights of citizens. The views and policies put forward by a solid core of Republican senators, representatives and candidates shed light on what is in store if Romney wins the White House and Republicans win the Senate.
The war on women would just be a start. The open and blatant attacks on the rights of rape victims should startle any sensible person about the dark cloud of perverse thinking dominating the Republican Party.
Mitt Romney may have been a moderate conservative in the past. But today he is an opportunist channeling the most extreme social ideologies and draconian economic proposals that put European austerity to shame.
This is no longer just a debate between slight variations in politics. The policies that amplify what's at stake can be seen in a coordinated attempt to restrict voting rights largely for people of color, attacks on women's right to control their bodies, an end to the safety net for the poor and elderly, anti-unionism directed both at the public sector and the private sector, xenophobia toward immigrants by embracing Arizona's Act 1070 and saber rattling in national affairs.
Don't forget that this same Mitt Romney railed against spending for FEMA, saying it was "immoral" for the U.S. to spend money on disaster relief when it should be focused on deficit reduction.
Right now America is within the margin of error of experiencing a siege of power by extremism. The Tea Party House representatives elected in 2010 did not move to the center or attempt to compromise to get work done in Washington for the American people. Instead, they vowed to block Obama and proceeded to flood the legislative process with extreme proposals on everything from changing the definition of rape to ending Roe v. Wade to blocking job creation to ending Medicare.
If these same people are given full reign of government, the American people will suffer significantly.
Please join me in doing everything we can these final days to stop that from happening.
studies and serving as an administrator in MPS for nearly two decades. His two sons are both MPS
graduates. Larry is an editor of Rethinking Schools and an adjunct at Marquette's College of Education.
He and his wife, Ellen Bravo, live on Milwaukee's East Side.