DeVine Law Gamecock moved from Spartanburg, S.C. to Atlanta in the Summer of 2001 and came face to face with the Left in power and in the raw. I came face to face with stifling Political Correctness. I came face to face with liberal racists who treated Blacks like disabled children. I came face to face with visceral hostility to people of faith in the Democratic Party and the cowardice of people of faith within it worse than I had ever seen. And I worked with a Black conservative who called me out and told me to read Robert Bork’s books.
Why was I ripe for a conversion? I now see that I probably stayed in the Dem Party despite having misgivings about it since soon after I first came of age because to have converted in my hometown would have meant almost a betrayal of my friends and a surrender to many people I despised in the Republican Party who I knew.
I was a coward. But even more so, I was not focused on it so much. I was focused on law practice and family. And the law practice played into the essential denial I was in from the beginning.
You see, I was a lib Dem mainly because of the racial inclusive rhetoric mainly Dems used as I grew up. I also bought into the elitist moral pose. Wanted to be affirmed by the elites, and in law school and then in practice, I bought into being an elite with contempt for the unwashed. We knew better what the Constitution ought to say. And, I was a sinner. I wanted to have my sex and eat it too.
But, all along I had to be in denial about a lot in the dem party, because I was a Christian, I was a JFK strong on defense dem, and I majored in economics. Moreover, beginning in the 70s and 80s with Buckley’s Firing Line, Howard Fineman and Charles McDowell on Washington on Washington Week in Review, Pat Buchanan on Crossfire, it seemed that I always agreed with the conservatives. My favorite dems were the ones that were at least perceived as conservatives. I would cry listening to Reagan on the radio, as I had to hate him in public but was so moved by his words.
One big moment was when he gave the evil empire speech and so many lib dem friends laughed. This told me something was rotten in Denmark. But I went into denial.
Then came Rush and Mike Gallagher and my experience on the inside of the Dem Party. I fell in love with Talk Radio in the late 80s and early 90s. Mike Gallagher got his big start on WORD-AM 950 in Greenville-Spartanburg. I immediately loved him because he denounced racists. He was a republican. I also acknowledged a disturbing trend in my personal life. I watched as many former racist Republicans took the MLK moral argument seriously and were hiring Blacks. I watched many liberal whites become very condescending to blacks, thinking that they couldn’t make it America without their help.
This ENRAGED me. But I kept it to myself and became a fixture on the Gallagher show. I was known as the Liberal Lawyer on a Bell Atlantic mobile in Spartanburg, but began to notice that my disagreements required 5 caveats. And Rush, well, what was really enlightening was to watch live events on C-Span, and then compare the MSM stories on same with Rush. The libs would leave our reporting on portions of events I deemed important. Rush never did. I came to realize that the media betrayed us, how wise Rush was.
Then there was Clinton. I waited a long time to pick a candidate in 1992. I finally picked Clinton because he was the most conservative. But almost from Day One, I saw what a liar he was. And being a county dem leader, over the course of the 90s, I came to see myself as a frontman for the kooks, just like Clinton.
I saw good Southern Baptists repress their faith in the face of Dem leaders who thought it best they not offend the Vagina Monologuer. One final straw was when I waited for Clinton to follow up on his declaration of war against al Qaeda after the 1998 African embassy bombings. It never came.
Then came Gore, McCain and Bush in 2000. I was repelled by Gore. I watched with fascination the NH and SC primaries as a Dem and so objective observer. I expected not to like Bush and I expected to like the repub that bashed repubs. But what I came to see was that McCain was loved by the msm because he bashed republicans, and I saw first hand in SC that he was the antithesis of straight talk.
And I found myself agreeing with Bush over Gore, on the issues. But, I held my nose and voted for Gore to reward Clinton for the economy.
Then came divorce, my father’s death and the move to Atlanta. I partnered with a black lawyer who had been GOP chair in Chattanooga. I met a lib editor (that I ended up dating and who let me write for the paper) at a black owned legal organ paper in Decatur, GA in Atlanta METRO that was in Cynthia McKinney’s district. I went to Fulton and DeKalb County dem party functions. I met the LEFT that wants to make victims that keep them in power. I met Blacks and whites that seemed not to want the poor to be empowered by the American dream. I met pure PC truth denying with glazed over eyes liberals.
They simply denied that supply side tax rate cuts worked. They didn’t seem to care about results.
And one day I told my lib girlfriend that I could no longer call myself a liberal Dem and that I was now a conservative Dem. She suggested that I simply could not label myself with that “c” word.
The next day I declared myself a conservative. This was before 911. A year later I declared myself a Republican.
Here I Stand!
Originally published in 2007 here
One man with courage makes a majority. – Andrew Jackson