An increasing number of pollsters and analysts are predicting that the “woke” culture and cancel culture the Democratic Party has come to embrace will backfire on them at the polls.
Among the woke policies Democrats have embraced in just the last year are defunding the police, renaming schools instead of opening them, teaching critical race theory in schools, and allowing transgender, biological males to compete in women’s sports.
Support for these radical ideas may be higher if the outcomes were positive, but a closer look reveals that these policies have left many communities reeling and even those on the left are worried about the fallout.
In 2020, the United States totaled more than 20,000 murders — the highest number since 1995 and 4,000 more than in 2019. Preliminary FBI data for 2020 shows a 25% surge in murders — representing the largest single-year increase since the FBI began publishing data in 1960.
America’s children are reaping the consequences of missing 14 months of in-person education. While Democrats continue to urge decision-makers to “follow the science,” the science shows it’s been safe for children to return to schools for a while.
It was widely reported that teachers were cutting the line for vaccines and still refused to return. The Union Teachers of Los Angeles argued that their re-opening plan was “a recipe for propagating structural racism”.
When children finally do return to school, many will find a new course on their schedule– critical race theory. Parents around the country are concerned that this new course will teach their children to judge people based on the color of their skin, not their character or work ethic.
Disgruntled parent Andrew Guttman said in an interview on Fox News this week that cancel culture curriculum “is going to destroy our country”.
Guttman further expanded his thoughts on woke culture, saying the “polarized media does not seem to accurately reflect the view of most Americans.”
Women and girls around the country are also falling victim to “woke” culture as transgender men have been allowed to compete in women’s sports. Opponents of this policy say that trans women who are biological men still have a physical advantage over biological women. Policies like this could cost women more than just titles, they are concerned about losing college scholarships too.
While Democrats maintain woke culture aims to promote equality, the majority of Americans don’t see it that way. A Harvard/Harris survey in February asked, “Do you think there is a growing cancel culture that is a threat to our freedom or not?” A 64-36 majority of voters said they thought there was. Republicans recognized that threat by 80-20; independents by 64-34, while Democrats remained split, with a slight majority of 52-48, saying there is no threat.
James Carville, a top Democratic strategist addressed the impact wokeness will have on Democrats at the polls in an interview with Vox.
“Wokeness is a problem and everyone knows it. It’s hard to talk to anybody today — and I talk to lots of people in the Democratic Party — who doesn’t say this. But they don’t want to say it out loud,” he said, adding that it can ultimately be “damaging to the party brand.”
When asked why folks will not verbalize the problem with wokeness, Carville responded:
“Because they’ll get clobbered or canceled. And look, part of the problem is that lots of Democrats will say that we have to listen to everybody and we have to include every perspective, or that we don’t have to run a ruthless messaging campaign. Well, you kinda do. It really matters.
“I always tell people that we’ve got to stop speaking Hebrew and start speaking Yiddish. We have to speak the way regular people speak, the way voters speak. It ain’t complicated. That’s how you connect and persuade. And we have to stop allowing ourselves to be defined from the outside.”
In an email shared by The New York Times contributor Thomas Edsall, Jonathan Haidt, a social psychologist at N.Y.U., succinctly presented why the Democratic Party’s left wing could tank the party’s future prospects:
“Wokeness is kryptonite for the Democrats,” he wrote. “Most people hate it, other than the progressive activists. If you just look at Americans’ policy preferences, Dems should be winning big majorities. But we have strong negative partisanship, and when people are faced with a party that seems to want to defund the police and rename schools, rather than open them, all while crime is rising and kids’ welfare is falling, the left flank of the party is just so easy for Republicans to run against.”
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