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Demographic trends encourage cooperation

While local Republicans may justifiably enjoy recent victories, the winds of change are in the air, even in solidly red Indiana. A wake-up call has been scheduled for the near future, but it appears that many politicians are planning to hit the snooze button.

The unexpected defeats of Richard Mourdock and Tony Bennett are being rationalized while demographic shifts are slowly building across the country and closer to home. We are undeniably becoming a more diverse nation and state.

It is not partisan to observe that 93 percent of blacks, 90 percent of gays, 73 percent of Asians, 71 percent of Hispanics, 60 percent of those age 18-29 and 55 percent of women voted for President Obama. Even 50 percent of Catholics and 69 percent of Jews went for Obama.

The policies of the modern Republican Party are turning off large swaths of the electorate, and the big tent is shrinking. The Democratic Party is far from perfect, but many of us cannot relate to the Republican Party in its current incarnation.

Is it too much to ask that politicians from both parties observe these reality-based trends and concentrate on the economic issues that unite us rather than divide us along social, ethnic and religious lines?


Voters reject GOP’s moralizing

After listening to and reading political columnists speculate about the Republican Party’s disappointing performance in the national election, I feel compelled to share my opinion.

While the Republican Party touts fiscal conservatism and “laissez faire” economics as key parts of its platform, the party’s reluctance to adopt social tolerance has made it unelectable at the national level.

On the same day voters rejected a moderate Republican for president, marijuana legalization (in swing state Colorado) and same-sex marriage referendums succeeded. In Indiana, the GOP’s senatorial candidate self-destructed and led to a Libertarian candidate winning almost 150,000 votes (Democrat Joe Donnelly won with 49.9 percent.)

What does this tell us? That today’s voters are numb to the social rhetoric that has defined Republican candidates since the 1980s. Put simply, as voters support a smaller government role in the economy, they also want freedom from a government that promotes a preordained set of moral values.


State’s deer hunt not a money-generator

In response to Don and Susie Sexton’s state park deer-reduction protest letter (Nov. 12) I have to say: Quit fanning the liberal flame of “profit-motivated” activities.

First, the state does not charge for these hunts; they are free. Second, the state allows each hunter to harvest three deer, not the “mass slaughter” they reference. Third, these deer do not count against any bag limit, so I can harvest eight more in LaGrange County but those eight cost me a license fee for each. I do this to fill my freezer. With the constant rising price of beef at the grocery store due to liberal policies, I do what I can to save money to pay for my ever-rising health care premiums.

These are not canned hunts nor do they generate one penny of profit for the state. The profit takers are the evil oil companies that supply the gas I burn to get there, the meat processors I pay to butcher and package my meat, the ammunition manufacturers I pay to buy their ammo, the hunting gear manufacturers I buy gear from to hunt. Hunting is a money generating sport in many ways but not for the state.

Hope to see you at the park.