Here are a few big parts of the issue with GOP Logic:
Liberals want programs like affordable comprehensive healthcare, paid parental leave, mandatory minimum sick and vacation days, better access to, and quality of, education, free or affordable childcare, etc.
These are all programs focused around the family, and these programs are necessary because over the last fifty or sixty years, women have entered the workforce and, simultaneously, it becomes increasingly difficult to live comfortably on just one income.
But the GOP does not want to adjust to this reality. Moms and Dads can’t just choose to stay home. In many cases, it isn’t an option. Being able to have a stay-at-home parent is a luxury these days. As a society, we generally don’t want people to have to choose between paying for childcare and their careers, but we have also been unwilling to make the adjustments necessary to make these decisions easier for families.
And with two working parents, we do not emphasize home life as a society. We do not have mandatory sick days or vacation time. We do not demand enough of our healthcare providers to make our medical care more affordable. And we also don’t have strong programs in place to ensure the success of every child, regardless of where their hometown is.
The GOP especially decries the loss of the nuclear family, and I do personally believe that the loss of family stability and happiness plays a large role in the massive levels of depression and mental health issues in this nation. But even though we mourn the loss of these support structures, we refuse to pass laws to help.
The GOP will argue that we should not burden business owners with these costs – healthcare is expensive, they can’t afford to lose workers for a year due to childbirth, they can’t afford to give a lot of vacation because it will affect the bottom line.
And maybe we shouldn’t burden the business owner. But the GOP doesn’t want the government to take charge either. They refuse to spend money to bolster the ACA, they will not create payment programs for sick time or vacation, they will not supply us with childcare or better access to education. They argue we can’t have our taxes go up.
So GOP logic is that business owners shouldn’t pay for these things, and the government shouldn’t pay for these things. Which is to say, Republicans don’t want these things. They don’t want better healthcare, they are fine with paying thousands for child-care, they don’t mind leaving their newborns with strangers after a few weeks, and they don’t really care about the quality of education their children will receive.
And if they do want these things, they don’t come to the table with any alternative. As we have seen with healthcare, they have no plan.
I will be honest and say that it is difficult for me to understand why anyone would object to more sick time, vacation time, more affordable healthcare, and better lives for our families and children. But when the stance is that “no one should pay for it, so we shouldn’t have it,” there is no way forward. We are stuck with this status quo where we prioritize the health and welfare of industry over that of the American people.
We will not break this stalemate until Republicans understand that they too will benefit immensely from these programs. We need to bridge that gap.