I can’t help but think of the Democrats as the Washington Generals of politics. The Washington Generals would appear at the start of every single game against the Harlem Globetrotters, warming up with as much earnestness and seriousness-of-purpose as could possibly be mustered. Of course, we all knew that it was an act, and that their whole reason for existence was to provide a foil (fool?) for our beloved Globetrotters to literally run rings around. But the charade only really worked if the poor Generals – for the 1641st time – played with sufficient sobriety (whiteness?) that the inevitable triumph of the All-Fun All-the-Time Globetrotters over them seemed satisfying.
Hence, our friends in the Democrat Party. Here comes Curly Lemon holding out a spinning ball tantalizingly close to a Generals player – and surprise: just as he lunger for the ball, Curly almost by magix flips the ball off of his head – then off of the ceiling! – then, swoosh, into the hoop.
Now here comes Karl Rove, railing against the de-sanctification of marriage caused by the unnatural acts of men marrying men and then actually having sex AS IF IT IS OK. Joe Democrat looks at the issue longingly – he wants nothing more than to stand up and shout "THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING WRONG WITH BEING GAY AND NOT A REASON IN THE WORLD TWO MEN SHOULDN’T GET MARRIED AND – GASP – EVEN HAVE SEX IF THEY WANT." You can almost see steam coming out of Joe D.’s ears as he restrains himself, knowing that such an outburst would alineate something like 80% of the electorate outside of Greenwich Village. But he can’t restrain himself: "While I hold the sanctity of marriage inviolate and believe that if should be reserved for a union between a man and a woman, I believe that same-sex civil unions are appropriate." THE CROWQD GOES WILD! Karl grabs the ball before Joe D. Even knows it’s gone and throws it into the hoop, banking it off the corner of the hot dog guy’s cart.
It doesn’t help either that Joe D. Has not only taken the bait, but has done so in a reserved, analytic, nuanced manner. KARL RULES!
So here’s the learning. From Sun Tzu, we all know that the war is won or lost before the battle is even begun (you got that, Mr. Wolfowitz?). There is no winning move for Joe D. on gay marriage. He can either alienate voters or betray his own values and compromise his cherished integrity (gee, this would be a lot easier if Republicans had integrity, wouldn’t it?). So Mr, Tzu (and several millenia of military thoerists), what’s the answer: decline to engage in a war one cannot win.
So Joe D., the next time Killer Karl comes at you with gay marriage, or the pledge of allegiance, or school prayer, or abortion, or flag-burning, or Presidential oral-zex-outside-of-marriage, just refuse to take the bait. Watch the ball spinning. Say to your constituents who are being malisciously maligned, "Sorry, but this is one battle I just can;t fight for you – let’s hope the courts will do their job!" Do not, Joe D., lunge for that ball.
Because without the nuancing Joe D. To make fun of, the Globetrotters’ don’t have much of a show.