Okay, my thoughts on the DNC. Speeches were all good and all on point. Senator Clinton isn’t the greatest speech-maker usually but she upped her game last night. She spoke at length but I was never looking at the clock except to check when it was my cat’s feeding time.
BTW, my cat was impressed when I told her that the Clintons had had a cat named Socks in residence–she just does not approve of dogs in general, and as she’s a declawed old lady, well, you can understand that. Even friendly dogs are a bit scary to her, poor old thing. So if Alsie had a vote, I think Senator Clinton would get it.)
Anyway, back to seriousness.
I don’t need to dissect everything, but I know I have some die-hard Clinton haters on my feed. And some who are disillusioned with the election process in general. I am telling all of you, you are misled. Thirty years of the Republicans trying to tear this woman down and all you can say is “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” Repeat a lie often enough and people will believe it. She is NOT a crook, she is a caring individual who has worked TIRELESSLY for kids and kids’ rights all her grown life. Sure, she’s made missteps and mistakes, but you people try living under a microscope for forty years. I’m absolutely certain we can find a ton of things YOU each have done that thankfully for you were never on camera.
Now those of you who think if they cannot have the “perfect candidate” you are going to vote third party just to spite Senator Clinton. (And, somehow, the system.) Remember how well *that* worked with Ralph Nader’s third party. If Gore had won, the world would be a far different place today. No Clarence Thomas, no Gulf war on made up, trumped up charges, likely no Da’esh or Boko Haram. No 9/11.
Instead, what we got was two illegal wars, thousands of lives lost, Clarence Thomas on the supreme court, strides hard fought and hard won for women’s health care nearly lost, terrorists both home-grown and abroad, a middle class that has virtually disappeared, and we nearly went over the cliff, recession-wise.
Then Barack Obama was elected. We did not get single-payer health care, which he wanted, but he did push through the Affordable Care Act, under which people like my wife finally got health insurance to help pay for things related to her nerve-damaged hands and feet, a congenital nerve problem that runs in her family.
And he single-handedly bailed out the banks with a loan that was fully paid back. He got the ship of state to steer away from the cliff. He created more jobs, more opportunities. And he was blocked while doing this by the most do-nothing Republican congress in history.
Folks, it has come to this. We are a nation that has never, in my opinion, been truly “great” in the sense that people who are fervent patriots think it is. There are countries more progressive in human rights than us. More progressive in health care, in controlling assault weapons, with fewer mass shootings than us. Better infrastructure. But. We also have the seeds of greatness and have had great moments, some lasting years, because of our democratic principals. And democracy works best when we work together. It doesn’t work well when we demonize other people, fellow Americans or those born elsewhere (remember we’re a nation FOUNDED on immigrants by immigrants, unless you’re a First Nations person, in which case your ancestors stood there and muttered, “There goes the neighborhood.”
The “great men” who supposedly “built this country” didn’t. It was built by slave labor and near-slave labor. It was built by Africans brought here by force, by Chinese who were treated like disposable machines, and died by the millions building railroads and blasting through mountains to link east with west. It was built by Muslims and Jews, and Christians, and Atheists, and even Pagans and Sikhs and Buddhists. By Animists and by every possible religious feeling humans ever conceived. It was built by women who held the factories together when the men went to war, to defeat dictators like Drumpf wants to be, who were then expected to give up their jobs and go back to breeding quietly in the kitchens when the men came home. Who finally had enough, as did all the other people exploited. And who have risen up together to gain rights we should have all had all along.
I know this. I know and am uncomfortable enough with my white privilege to know that while I’m at risk for being disabled, for being queer, for being old, I am still protected by my white skin in so many ways. But two hundred years ago, I would have been oblivious, if I’d even lived this long. (Remember cancer three years ago? I’d have died.)
But I know we are all tired of waiting. I know we’re all tired of crumbs from the table. But here’s the thing–in a democracy we don’t get it all. We have to all be willing to compromise. President Obama said it when he said, paraphrased, that EVEN if we are 100 percent right and the other party is 100 percent wrong, we have to be willing to give, to get. That’s how democracy works.
Beyond that, I think Senator Clinton is the right person for the job. I don’t think she’s a “hold your nose and vote for the lesser evil.” You who hate her, would you feel different if you found out that she was responsible for integrating a known segregated (illegally) school in the South that had gotten around integration with plausible deniability, by visiting it and pretending she was the mother of a white son, concerned that he might have to study alongside black students? The principal assured her that there would be no black students and bingo, she had him.
Would you feel different if you knew she had made it easier for people to adopt children languishing in foster care? Would you feel different if you knew she had worked to get disabled kids into public schooling, not languishing at home unable to attend because of the obstacles that kept them home?
Maybe if you knew that she had visited over 100 countries in her role as Secretary of State and that she was respected the world over as a strong negotiator, or if you knew that she was responsible for persuading the president to go ahead and act on bringing Bin Laden to justice, a thing Bush was unable or unwilling to do himself, while expending thousands of lives in his revenge war. Maybe if you understood that she has fought for veterans’ care and the first responders to 9/11, getting money for health care and after care for victims and families?
No? Then, finally, be persuaded that Trump who can’t even handle criticism on Twitter should never have the nuclear codes. Be persuaded that Trump may not be the worst president but he will certainly be the last. That our country can survive four years of Hillary Clinton but not Trump and Pence.
And that’s my opinion.