Op-Ed: The allure of the Republican Party is baffling. Voters will regret falling for it, and so too will their party.
I was a Republican until this whole year of 2018.
I had a front row seat to Barack Obama’s triumphal march into his first inauguration. I was an early and deeply involved Republican Party voter, for which reason I understand that people who voted for Donald Trump last year thought he was the only candidate in this race that deserved their vote. They were wrong.
I have known for a long time that I am not part of some cult of anti-intellectualism. This was not at all the case the first time I started voting. In fact, I went in with my brain still intact. And during the first presidential election after the Second World War, the choice was a different one.
My grandfather, one of the most intelligent men I knew, didn’t think a word of my father’s politics. He supported Democrat Adlai Stevenson, a candidate the likes of whom he had never seen before. His reasoning was simple: because of my father’s race and the fact that he was a union man, America had gone a long way towards removing the scourge of civil rights with the passage of the Civil Rights legislation.
Now he had to admit that, even though Stevenson had been a brilliant man, he was wrong. In the years after the war, the Democratic Party had become a party of “the man”, not the people, and its candidate became acceptable by virtue of his party affiliation being the colour of his skin, his religion or his gender. They weren’t the only candidates, but they were the most visible. Stevenson was “one of us” and the only candidate I could see voting for was a man I hadn’t seen since.
I came to understand in my early adulthood that Republicans were