Angry Gop Divorced From Reality

Out There

A Roundup Of Unusual And Thought-provoking Perspectives In Two Formats: A Concise Version On The Commentary Page With A Full-length Piece On The Paper's Web Site At Baltimoresun.com/opinion

April 28, 2009|By Bill Maher

If conservatives don't want to be seen as bitter people who cling to their guns and religion and anti-immigrant sentiments, they should stop being bitter and clinging to their guns, religion and anti-immigrant sentiments.

I still don't know what those "tea bag" protests were about. I saw signs protesting abortion, illegal immigrants, the bank bailout and that gay guy who's going to win American Idol. But it wasn't tax day that made them crazy; it was Election Day. Because that's when Republicans became what they fear most: a minority.

The conservative base is absolutely apoplectic because, because ... well, nobody knows. They're mad as hell, and they're not going to take it anymore. Even though they're not quite sure what "it" is.

Here are the big issues for normal people: the war, the economy, the environment, mending fences with our enemies and allies, and the rule of law.

And here's the list of Republican obsessions since President Barack Obama took office: that his birth certificate is supposedly fake, he uses a teleprompter too much, he bowed to a Saudi guy, Europeans like him, he gives inappropriate gifts, his wife shamelessly flaunts her upper arms, and he shook hands with Hugo Chavez and slipped him the nuclear launch codes.

It's sad what's happened to the Republicans. They used to be the party of the big tent; now they're the party of the sideshow attraction, a socially awkward group of mostly white people who speak a language only they understand. Like Trekkies, but paranoid.

The GOP base is convinced that Mr. Obama is going to raise their taxes, which he just lowered. But, you say, "that's just the fringe of the Republican Party." No, it's not. The governor of Texas, Rick Perry, is not afraid to say publicly that thinking out loud about Texas seceding from the Union is appropriate considering that ... Mr. Obama wants to raise taxes 3 percent on 5 percent of the people?

Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota recently said she fears that Mr. Obama will build re-education camps to indoctrinate young people. But the last thing the president wants to do is run a camp where he has to shelter and feed a bunch of fat, angry white people.

Look, I get it, "real America." After a long run of controlling the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court, this latest election has you feeling like a rejected husband. You've come home to find your things out on the front lawn. You're not ready to let go, but the country you love is moving on. And now you want to call it a whore and key its car.

That's what you are, the bitter divorced guy whose country has left him. But it's been more than 100 days, and your country is not coming back to you. She's found somebody new. And it's a black guy.

Bill Maher is the host of HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher." This article originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

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