Would Grandpa be a Republican?

In my newspaper days, I seldom accepted anonymous  solicitations. But, this isn’t a newspaper and, occasionally, some people who need to stay behind the scenes still have an opinion to express — and the eloquence to express it. So, here is the first anonymous submission to Milam Blues.

 

Would Grandpa be a Republican?

I don’t know what my Grandpa’s political party was before he was starved off the land and went to pick cotton.

Before his wife wore her best Sunday clothes, some old ripped overalls with one side longer than the other, to take their family photo by the side of a cotton field.

I don’t know what he thought about rich folks before his baby died at home, too poor for hospitals, April of ’35; Before mama cut out her hair with her own scissors and cried for that baby every night for six years in those tenement shacks.

Before the dust blew like nuclear war across the plains.

I don’t know what grandpa thought about Republicans before the government gave him a jack hammer and a paycheck, making Texas 6 into a paved road.

Before the government farm programs helped him buy that bottom land from the farmer who made the supreme sacrifice and put a bullet through the top of his head.

I don’t know what he thought before the government sent his later children to school, bought his corn and hogs and made him from a day laborer into a respectable citizen. Before he became a Deacon at the Baptist Church and proclaimed that no one should suffer again as Christ suffered. Before his government taxed the soulless corporations, broke their monopolies, began the old-age pension, provided healthcare to the aged and infirm.

I don’t know what he thought before October of 1929, when the corporations ruled our nation as they now do again. But I know one thing in solemn certainty, Grandpa would shake his head in visible pain if he heard these young, rich Republicans who claim Christ but follow him none too closely.

If someone suggested we “just let ’em die if they can’t afford healthcare,” I think he’d have used his giant, calloused hands to remove any doubt about where he stood.  Tell that to man who lost a child, a real human baby with painful cries and little, curled fingers, to the goddamned system the Republicans want to restore.

Grandpa left a better world.  He often said the only thing good about the “good old days” is that they are now gone.  Replaced by a more just world, a fairer world.  For how long?  Until no one alive remembers what it was like before, is my guess.

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About Richard Stone

... is a husband, a father, a writer, a journalist, an activist, an avid reader of trash science fiction and an occasional folk/bluegrass guitar player. He loves to travel, UT sports, community theater and sharing a good bottle of wine with good friends.
This entry was posted in Miscellaneous, Tea Party Republicans. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Would Grandpa be a Republican?

  1. Tom Jones says:

    I think Grandpa would be very proud of his Grandson for not only listening, but remembering what he learned..

  2. Cecil Arnold says:

    Well done. Too bad man’s memory is so short.

  3. steve says:

    I wonder what he would think about LBJ and his Dem buddies taking grandpa’s hard earned social security and allowing the Govmt to spend it instead of leaving it to those it was meant for.

  4. tnjen says:

    This reminds me of what’s happened in East Tennessee and the revisionism surrounding the TVA. I fell for it myself thinking that the government buy out of our farmstead was forced/bad. When I mentioned this offhand to my grandmother, she looked at me dead in the eye and told me I was wrong – that her daddy made money off that sale, that the excess land was useless by that time (one of the main reasons FDR/TVA gave for the project was soil erosion/flooding), that none of the kids wanted to farm it and overall it improved their lives. It shocked me to realize first how wrong I was and second how I’d been taken in by the republican planted mythology surrounding it all.

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