What Makes a Human Become a Republican?

01/22/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • John DeBellis Author of Standup Guys: A Generation of Laughs, Former writer for SNL, The Tonight Show, Politically Incorrect, and wrote and directed The Last Request

The other day I went to the funeral of a friend who had died of a heart attack from working three jobs in order to pay for health insurance. For no legitimate reason I could think of -- (other than I was eating a vegetarian meal) -- I was cornered by a group of agitated conservative Republicans. Before they spoke, I could tell their political affiliation by their smiles which dripped down at one corner of their mouths like part of a Salvador Dali painting. They never even introduced themselves, they just dove wallet first into their agenda; preaching tax cuts (for the middle class of the top one percent), small government (which means privatizing everything except your involuntary body functions) and telling me that God gave us two hands so we could carry a gun in each one. I was thinking; Who were these people and more importantly, what would make a human being become a Republican?

Even though their relentless badgering resembled a pack of rabid prehistoric canines, not all of them could have been repeating a past episode of being attacked by starving wolves. No, if that were the case, Republican environmental policies wouldn't include destroying so many wild life refuges, thus forcing hungry animals into the suburbs. Well, on the other hand, that could be one method of convincing the public that we need handguns. You can't mow your lawn and at the same time shoot your rifle accurately. But if you have a handgun stuck inside your belt, you can pull it out and as fast as you can say, "Condoleezza Rice," you can wipe out an endangered species. Okay, so that may explain one aspect of the Republican natural-lessness, but there is so much more that has to be understood.

Could it be that they were from broken homes? No. I have friends from broken homes (even some that killed their parents) who grew up well adjusted, compassionate human beings who would cut off their ears rather than listen to Rush Limbaugh even if he was chocking on an illegal pain killer. So it must be something deeper, something more sinister. Maybe it was an abusive parent who made them step on homeless people (perhaps even tap dancing or break dancing on them) rather than walk around them, or a parent who pretended that their kid's boy scout troop was being shipped off to Vietnam (or disappointed that they were not), or worse maybe they threatened to send their child to an inner city public school unarmed (with only one assault rifle); possibly a contributing factor, but still not enough to result in family values that would be considered too rigid for the French Inquisition. Could it be that they were kidnapped by a psychotic neighbor and couldn't live with the disappointment of being returned home? This is more likely, but would still not result in a philosophy that considers the desire for a peaceful solution a form of mental illness (possibly even the result of a severe stroke) and one that considers war a last option and metaphor for "I'm the President and I don't need no stinkin' U.N. Badges!"

All of this still does not explain such an uncaring policy as, "A tooth for a tooth and eye for an eye and none of it will ever be covered by a national health plan," unless, of course, this behavior was caused by a severe chemical imbalance (possibly the ingesting of nitroglycerin), several missing genes or the added one a chimpanzee possesses, and a frontal lobotomy caused by an American Flag pin stuck in the forehead. That may explain the behavior of some Republicans, but certainly not the conservatives of the far right, the neo-cons! How does one become a neo-conservative? Not naturally, which explains why most of them don't believe in evolution.

Although many of their traits are similar to that of a serial killer such as, immunity to another's pain (other than the joy of it being induced to minorities), feelings of superiority (especially to their own conscience), the absence of guilt or remorse (thus the escalation of deviousness), thinking that they are driven by a higher power, and hearing the voices of God speaking through a dog (Carl Rover), or in most Republican's case, an elephant. The one thing that separates a conservative from a serial killer is that the serial killer does not try to recruit a nation to join in on his murderous spree, has a more legitimate reason for killing, and is willing to do the actual dirty work himself. Oh and when the serial killer is finally caught, he can't go on a speaking tour at 20 grand a pop or gain 150 pounds and become a radio talk show host.

I recently had the opportunity to be in the room when a close psychiatrist friend put a Republican under hypnosis. Of course it took restraints, a bribe, and several jokes about minorities, until finally he had to swing an American flag back and forth to put the guy under. Even then it took several minutes to stop the Republican from saying his pledge of allegiance, the Lord's Prayer, and accusing the shrink of hiding weapons of mass destructions under his beard. After shaving his off his beard, undergoing a strip search, a blood test, a family background check, and racial profiling of all his patients, my shrink friend was finally allowed to ask the Republican what he thought of our election process and what happened in Florida during the 2000 election.

The Republican replied confidently, "That the constitution gives every American, no matter race, creed, or sex the opportunity to vote for the candidate of their choice, but the constitution's just a piece of decaying paper that was written (not even typed) by our forefathers (many of them liberals) a few hundred years ago before they had shredders, fire and theft proof vaults and supreme court Justices like Thomas and Scalia who believe the Constitution, like the Bill Of Rights, are just pieces of fiction. When the Republican responded truthfully the shrink knew he was hypnotized. I was very impressed, not believing a Republican would be susceptible to anything but multimillion dollar lobbyists, promises to eliminate social programs in favor of no bid contracts to family members still in grade school, or a congressional exorcism.

Now it was time to regress the Republican back to his childhood in order to find out what caused him to join the GOP. Right off the bat (one made by cheap labor in China of course), there were youthful ramblings that indicated he would eventually join the Republican party, like selling right wing magazines so he could buy his first hand gun, and becoming his 5th grade class president by claiming that his opponent was a draft dodger and was trading food stamps for crack cocaine in order to support a cell of communist cub scouts. After hearing the eleven-year-old Republican ramble on for ten minutes that the only reason Doug Williams, a black quarterback, won a super bowl, or even started was because his white coach, Joe Gibbs, was a genius and could overcome such an insurmountable handicap. The shrink almost snapped him out of his trance by accidentally mentioning President Elect Barak Obama. I almost snapped his neck; instead I used his credit card to order prescription drugs from Canada.

Finally,the shrink regressed him back to his early childhood, but what we found was still not enough evidence to result in such a deviant life choice. Some might suggest that as a young child being forced to perform as an opening act for human sacrifices might be enough, or being in his mother's womb while she worked as contortionist whose specialty was to fold her self into a pizza box and then be delivered to Libertarian bachelor parties could have had a powerful impact. The shrink strongly disagreed, but did suggest that some Republican's could use the diminished financial capacity defense to excuse their actions. I was still not any closer to an answer.

Maybe if we're ever going to find what makes a human being become a member of the Republican Party, there is one basic question we must ask first. Are they Human? On the surface it would seem so. They have similar bodies (with all of their body parts since a few of them have fought in a war), usually housed in expensive clothes at least twenty years out of style. They eat the same foods, although much, much more red meat. They communicate, usually very loud, generally repeating themselves in good old American English, of course. One in particular liked to call people he's about to lie to or use to incite a riot, "my friends."

They do listen, but only to themselves or others just like them. They breathe usually only inhaling since exhaling would be actually giving something back (to the environment). They have feelings but only for each other and up until one of them actually has the audacity to disagree or get caught in the men's room with a male Ann Coulter look-a-like (or the real Ann Coulter, whatever that is). They have values, and value human life, knowing exactly how much a human life is worth in barrels of oil, especially during the fuel consuming winter months. They believe that all men are created equal, only some end up in higher tax brackets, which of course makes them superior especially since most of them vote Republican and contribute heavily to their campaigns. They are committed to their ideals and are willing to take them to your children's grave. They cry but only after a tragedy that they can use to promote their agenda. They laugh but only after they feel we actually fell for their crying act. And lastly they reproduce, but under oath would claim that God made them do it. So to answer the question, "Are they human?" I'd have to say, definitely yes, but an earlier prototype.

Now, if we accept that the Republican is human and their behavior is also somewhat human, then I'm sure you're asking yourself, is the more highly evolved Democrat and their charitable behavior also human? Sure, the explanation is very simple, "a Democrat cares about being a member of the human race, a Republican only cares about winning the human race."

Although we have yet to discover a definitive answer as to why a human becomes a Republican, I think if you add all of the above plus one more contributing factor we may get very close to what ultimately causes such an abomination. I think the deciding factor that pushes a twenty-first century person into actually becoming a Republican is breathing too much of the oxygen deprived air that the Republican environmental policies created. In fact I feel that breathing in more and more of our atmosphere's polluted air is the only thing that can explain the increase in conservative values, thus explaining their unwillingness to develop the best most abundant cleanest source of energy -- solar power. (F.Y.I., To a Republican, the only way you can pollute the air is to burn an American Flag).

For once it's not just about money for the GOP. No, the more they can prevent oxygen from getting to the brain which promotes clearer more imaginative thinking, the more clouded and impaired our judgment will become and the less we will be able discern the truth and be able to think for ourselves, thus the more we will fall prey to the Republican's negative ads full of atom bombs bursting in air, horrible consequences like being vaporized just after you had your suit taken in, and fear mongering that would make shaking hands with a democrat be like having your prostate examine by Freddy Krueger.

Thus we surrender our freedom of speech or even moving our lips, our right to privacy (except in cases of making illegal campaign contributions to other Republicans), habeas corpus and even our on the court season tickets (only if you've paid for them already), and give in to the Republican's will- a will that breaks unions and makes big corporations and Wall Street the soul beneficiaries. That decided, the other important question I ask you, is how long did George Bush senior have to hold George W's head over a gas leak in one of his oil wells to get him to actually believe Dick Chaney and his cronies, or was George W. that stupid to begin with? My conclusion -- it was a lot of both.