Discover more from Thoughts from a Southern Gentleman
The light of dawn emerges
Welcome to the first post of Thoughts from a Southern Gentleman. I’ll cover two items in this edition:
Why I’m doing this publication.
And why I’m surprised more moderates aren’t breathing easier yet.
Thoughts from a Southern Gentleman. is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
Why I’m doing this publication.
I’m doing this because I couldn’t find anyone speaking with kindness, calm, and love about the political happenings in this country. Everyone is in their own news silos and they’re screaming and insulting those they disagree with.
There is too much anger in politics, and this lack of kindness and respect compounds our country’s problems. The fury and wrath directed at opponents propel the intensity of those on the other side to feel more desperate and afraid.
It literally fuels the opposition, while simultaneously pushing away potential voters who are currently not paying attention; and who could literally solve the problems facing our country if they became engaged.
I will do my best to bring the spirit of Lincoln into each thought I share here, and as a prior Republican -- now a proud moderate -- I’m more than tired of the extremes on both sides. I’m sure you are, too.
Most Americans are good, and we need to always remember that. We also need to always be optimistic and hopeful about our country’s future.
Sure, we could still bungle things and crash the mother ship, but our future is bright if we can come together and work as one in a spirit of unity and love. And we will have to work, because positive change and progress doesn’t happen magically.
I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I know that our democracy doesn’t work without informed voters. And I also know we need to grow closer together and show more patience and kindness.
We need compromise and unity. Not inflexibility and outrage.
Why I’m surprised more moderates aren’t breathing easier yet.
Even before the Trump indictment, I’ve talked with so many moderate and Democratic friends who are anxious and worried. And they’re flat exhausted by all the anger and vitriol.
The list of things that drag them down include:
They’re upset about the school shootings and the lack of movement on any kind of meaningful gun control.
They’re frustrated about the lack of access to healthcare for women and restrictions in many states regarding reproductive rights.
And in the GOP, they see a resurgent and dominant Trump, who’s once again atop the Republican Party — the almost-certain winner to face Joe Biden. (And if we’re honest, they’re not excited about Biden running for re-election.)
While I’ll grant this tally is enough to make you want to pull your hair out, and while I’ll most certainly grant that our division is the worst it’s been since the ’60s, I actually think dawn is emerging. And we’re just not aware of it because the night was so dark and long; the storm so terrifying.
But let’s look back to when dawn began to break through three years ago (that we all seem to so quickly forget).
Biden was elected and a new Attorney General was put into place. Sure, people aren’t happy with Merrick Garland’s pace, but would you rather have William Barr back at the helm? And does even the fiercest critic doubt Garland’s integrity?
Additionally, the Biden administration has actually passed quite a bit of bipartisan legislation, including:
The Infrastructure bill: made possible by 32 Republicans — 13 in the House and 19 in the Senate.
The CHIPS and Science Act: passed the Senate with a 64-33 vote. (Here’s what it does.)
And even a gun safety bill: somehow managed a vote of 65-33 in the Senate. (Here’s what it does, and it’s more than you probably think.)
So, our Congress is (sort of) working again, and even with an economy with high inflation last year, Democrats SHOCKED the nation (and world) and crushed the much-predicted Red wave.
Even better, almost every election denier that Trump endorsed lost because let’s be real: most Americans were not then (and are not now) ready to re-welcome that kind of uncertainty and indignation back into the Chambers of Congress.
The Republicans took the House (only narrowly), but they did so using two gerrymandered, redistricted maps that won’t be in place in 2024. This alone will net Democrats additional seats in the House next year.
And with Trump at the helm again spewing cruel comments in every breath (or DeSantis, should he take the lead), Democrats and moderates will be energized to show up again. Plus, young people are showing up in higher numbers and they’re not happy about the guns or all the old white men telling women what they can — or can’t — do.
Dawn is emerging and we’re day by day closer to more sanity and less venom and uncertainty.
Moderates, Democrats, and those who look forward to a more-boring, more-productive government should celebrate.
Don’t forget, if you’d like more regular doses of optimism, make sure you sign up for email notifications. It’s free to do so. 👊❤️🙏
Love and peace,
Stan R. Mitchell
P.S. I plan to have an optimistic and hopeful tone to every post. Even if we take some punches or get knocked down in the days and weeks to come, the “better angels of our nature” must stand back up and never surrender.
P.P.S. If you enjoyed this post, I’ll bet you’d love the book below about President Obama.
I strongly believe that more unites us than divides us, and while we face great challenges as a country, America has stood together for more than 240 years.
It’s only by pulling our country closer together that we can pass on a better future for our kids, and we need to hold and cherish the beliefs that got us here today. Beliefs such as patience, kindness, and a strong belief that our best days lie before us. These are the beliefs that got us to this point. And they’re also the kind of optimistic beliefs that will get us to a brighter future.