Night Two into the DNC, let’s talk about what the American people—all of us, men, women, families, people who are marginalized and alone because they are poor and depressed, the elderly, black people, brown people, white people, veterans, pacifists—-deserve and need.
We deserve the best.
We deserve a government that cares about our welfare to a man, woman and child. We deserve equal opportunity, equal pay, affordable or free health care, to have our civil rights respected including a woman’s right to determine what becomes of her body. Individually, we all deserve a safe and comfortable home, and if we are disabled, to be taken care of by our more fortunate brothers and sisters.
We deserve a leader who is positive and courageous, who is about cooperation and not hatred and division.
We do not deserve a leader who will take from us our health care, a leader so inept at foreign policy we can’t trust him not to embroil us in another war—- someone so politically immature as to tell kids to start a business by borrowing from their parents.
But above all, we do not deserve to have our lives legislated by people who hate.
Any purchase the conservatives have had around the benefits of decentralizing and limiting government has been eclipsed by the fact that in 2012 the Republican Party is recklessly, rashly vicious. Again and again I am struck by the irony of all that hatred of Barack Obama, the disrespect, the blind rage, the dark perspective of the pundits and the lawmakers, the rich, the lobbyists, the bankers and all of their friends who preach love for God and country and live every waking moment spewing animus and rage toward this man.
What is it, white male conservatives? Are you threatened, is your masculinity threatened by this black man?
When Bill Clinton spoke tonight, the specter of his antics in the Oval Office mostly in the distant past, he handed all of us the detailed, factual argument for re-electing the leader we currently have.
Clinton all too ably debunked that Obama has taken the work requirement from welfare, has raided and bankrupted Medicare, is imposing socialism on America through Obamacare, has run up five trillion in debt for no good reason and without any measures on the table or in place for reducing and eliminating it.
He reiterated and clarified for all of us that Obama saved the country from depression and created millions of private sector jobs. There are 3 million unfilled jobs in this country; and the Republicans would take money away from education necessary to fill those jobs.
Those getting out the vote need to arm themselves with Clinton’s talking points and simply start telling the truth of what Obama has done and what he has not. When met with hatred, rancor, resentment and rage, walk away if you can. Because hatred is not a feature of the American dream. Screaming matches , what Clinton termed bloodsport, are not part of discourse or healthy debate.
We need someone able to compromise who conducts himself with dignity and respect for his fellows and who never, not one time, has responded in kind to the flaming assholes who have degraded him.
All of this rancor is like a new strain of the bird flu. It is contagious. I think it’s about the white male patriarchy being threatened by Obama. Somehow he has opened the door to the winning combination of charisma, physical beauty in the classical sense and intellectual prowess that threatens the power of the gin-swilling, jingoistic, intellectually challenged white male elite: Rush Limbaugh, John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, Grover Norquist, Romney, Ryan and their lieutenants—-are all somehow unhorsed and unmanned by one articulate and charismatic guy.
In order to create the invisible Obama that only rabid conservatives see, they have had to project the worst possible human failings on him, to invest in him the most repugnant things about human nature and the human character. They have had to create a Frankenstein that only looks like the Obama most of us know, whose goodness and character come through the television screen and are reflected in his deeds as much as his words.
We have forgiven Bill Clinton his immense moral failing; we will have to forgive the haters for being hateful. It won’t be easy.
Above all, we need to care about this election. Most of the far Left disillusioned with Obama are also white men– chiefly in the academy, who are comfortably situated so that they can preach from their alienation and rather than come from compassion and empathy from the immense burden laid on Obama’s shoulders in 09, spew tired leftist rhetoric with utter self-righteousness, forgetting to look in the mirror.