The Jekyll and Hyde voter | Ott Observations


A couple of recent national surveys got me thinking about how disconnected our voting ideology can be from what we really want.  

The Pew Research Center found that only 8 percent of Americans favor laws banning abortion without exceptions for rape, incest or the mother’s health. Yet, we now have multiple states passing such laws. 

A Gallup poll indicates 71 percent of Americans support same-sex marriage. Again, multiple states have Republican majorities that would do away with this right.

In a two-party system of government, we all have to make a choice. Most of us stubbornly stick to our Republican or Democrat voting tradition. We do this despite our party’s drift from what we once believed it stood for. 

It reminds me of the classic story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, who are actually one person. The story illustrates the duality of man and our capacity to embrace either good or evil.  

Here are some examples of the Jekyll and Hyde voter.

Jekyll professes to be a patriot. Hyde supports insurrectionists in our government, who refused to certify a presidential election based on accusation vs. evidence. Hyde also supports restricting the voting rights of people he suspects don’t support his views.

Jekyll professes to support law and order. Hyde chastises law enforcers who act to uphold laws concerning government documents.  Hyde also believes judges should reflect the political opinion of the party that appoints them rather than make a compelling legal argument for a decision and/or the reversal of court precedent. 

Jekyll is a freedom lover. Hyde believes the government should be able to mandate to women that, once pregnant, their body is no longer theirs regardless of circumstances.  

Jekyll believes the U.S. is a Christian nation. Hyde wants to de-fund government “social safety net” programs that address the needs of those Jesus always spoke of helping. Hyde agrees when his church rank orders sin such as abortion or homosexuality and uses that rank order as the basis for discrimination.

Jekyll wants a safe home, and clean air and water to consume. Hyde denies climate science or doesn’t want to bear market costs to reduce pollution.  As weather disasters increase, Jekyll looks for help when he is a victim.  Hyde wants to minimize government and tell people they need to be more self-reliant.

Jekyll wants his children to be educated and safe when they’re at school.  Hyde is an NRA member and won’t support even the most common sense laws that might reduce access to mass-killing weapons.  

Hyde also wants to censor literature, history and biology, denying children an education that would challenge them to think and expose them to a world much more complex than Hyde wants it to be.

Jekyll wants a growing and thriving economy where businesses are fully staffed and service is exceptional. Hyde is against immigration even though the U.S. population is shrinking without immigration. Hyde either doesn’t realize or doesn’t care that we’re 11 million people short of the jobs we need to staff, and we have near record unemployment.

Jekyll is a strong proponent of “family values” (as if anyone isn’t).  Hyde supports politicians who make crude references to women, make fun of the handicapped, belittle the poor, bully others and display rudeness vs. civility at every opportunity.  

If Jekyll’s children behaved like Hyde, they would be in permanent “time out.”

There are times that the reality of how a political party governs is far adrift of the ideology we have traditionally embraced. Now is one of those times with respect to the Republican Party. 

How does this change?  Dr. Jekyll needs to look in the mirror and see Mr. Hyde. And then he needs to vote Hyde out of office.

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