A reader writes:
I totally agree with what your Millennial reader wrote, and I want to add a few points. First, we have grown up in the most diverse America in history. My closest friends don't look like me, don't go to the same church, and some don't even speak English as their first language. We have more contact with immigrants, gays, the disabled, and multicultural families than any generation before us. So when a party tries to bemoan the loss of the "white establishment," even my white male friends – the supposed members of this establishment – are shocked and alienated. You can't try to win a demographic and think they won't notice that you are leaving behind their girlfriends, boyfriends, classmates and coworkers.
We are also the most educated generation yet. And while you can try to write off academia as a liberal indoctrination, what is really happening is that the anti-science, anti-evidence, anti-fact machine of the GOP can't stand up to people who know how to ask the right questions and have the Internet to find the answers. We are not going to take kindly to a party that would pass Medicare and start two wars without paying for any of it, blame the deficit on the next president, and then try to bill itself as the fiscally responsible party. The facts are out there, whether it's about climate change, birth control, or what you voted for on the House floor last year.
The Internet only strengthens both of those traits in our generation. O'Reilly can rant about Gangnam Style all he wants. [The above video] is perhaps the best example of how his party has lost a generation of supporters through willful ignorance.
I agree wholeheartedly with your reader on some of the big issues, but gay marriage support cannot be understated.
Eighty percent of millennial voters know someone personally who is gay. Unsurprisingly, there's a 20% difference in marriage support amongst those who know someone that is gay. These are our family members, our friends, our co-workers. We not only know them, but we see the love they have in their hearts for their partners. And it's starting to work on our baby-boomer parents, too. My mother was a lifelong Republican voter. But since 2008, she has become close, personal friends with a gay man. She and her fiance have him and his partner over to dinner just as they would any other couple. In two weeks, they are standing up with her at her wedding. My mom voted for the President this year almost solely on that issue alone.
You have always written that marriage equality moves forward because it's virtually normal. That it doesn't have to be won in court cases or by demanding it. Marriage equality is being won because gays are no longer an enigma being defined by the Christian Right. We know gays and lesbians. We're friends with gays and lesbians. We share our lunch table at work and our dinner table at home. And more troubling for Republican Party, we're starting to have our own children. Children that are growing up in households with parents who support marriage equality, who are going to daycare with children of same-sex couples. And to them, it won't even be virtually normal. It will just be normal.