As Mark McCloskey announced his run for US Senate, it’s evident that many Missourians are fighting for a backward view of our national identity. As was enshrined in the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Here at Tim Shepard for United States Senate campaign, we are fighting for a MissouriUnCompromised. When Drek and I decided to get into public service, we did so, knowing that our existence in this race is an act of defiant protest. We need you to stand with us. Too many in our state, including many powerful Democrats, have misread what the rise of Trumpism in Missouri means. They see a racist, backwoods, and backward electorate.
But here’s the secret, Missouri isn’t as racist, homophobic, and backwoods as we all try to tell each other that we are. Trump carried Missouri in large part because he spoke to the needs of a lot of Missourians; he made them feel heard. We Democrats do such a fantastic job at explicitly calling out so many groups; black and brown communities, people of color, women, indigenous communities, LGBTQ folks, and the list goes on. Don’t get me wrong, it’s critical and vital that we address every marginalized community, but we are missing one which has allowed the Republicans to wedge neighbors apart.
We have many white working and middle-class people on edge, people who don’t have access to high-wage jobs, education, rural broadband, healthcare, good infrastructure, etc. And when we talk about the idea of white privilege, it makes them feel excluded.
It’s true, Mark McCloskey is a symbol of Missouri’s past and present misdeeds. But we will only make a new future when we demand the opposite. Demanding a Missouri UnComomprimised means we have to embrace and live our values with pride. Our Declaration of Independence has aspirational words that Martin Luther King refers to as our national creed. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.” These are the words that have animated the debate over the very soul of our nation. The debate raged at the nation’s founding, again in 1820 when the federal legislature passed the Missouri Compromise, and in the present. We are debating whether it is okay for a few to profit at the expense of human suffering and exploitation. It gets played out in the question of whether Black Lives Matter, whether or not our rural and urban communities are created equal, whether or not every single American deserves healthcare, and education, and a living wage.
As you’re sharing on social media, stop elevating the Missouri Compromise. Don’t share about Greitens or the McCloskeys; that promotes the suffering side of the debate. Instead, proudly declare that we are a Missouri UnCompromised! Proudly share with the world and your neighbors that we have a candidate who truly is here to fight for all of us. Meet me, Tim Shepard, an LGBTQ activist with a beautiful mixed family representative of America’s future. We can choose to have a senator who has blended urban and rural lives and believes in traditional American values, that our diversity is our strength, and democracy is what makes us great.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has!” – Margeret Meade
Now let’s get to work!