Posted by: minnow | April 6, 2016

Fuel the Revolution

Lately, the suggestion that what Bernie Sanders has championed will continue under Clinton, if she wins the nomination, is making the rounds.  I say: BOLOGNA. In fact, I think such talk is actually double-speak for, “vote for Hillary, so we don’t have to actually change.”  PLEASE, HEAR THIS CLEARLY.  And, give it some SERIOUS thought: Hillary Clinton cannot maintain what Bernie Sanders is leading.  She doesn’t. Even. Want to. 

Despite a similar voting record, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are not the same brand of Democrat. 

This article from Rolling Stone’s editor Jann Wenner suggests Clinton is the better candidate than Sanders because she knows how Washington works and her incremental plans are more practical, more realistic.  In other words they won’t upset the powers that be…oops I mean the DNC..or, er…the apple cart.  Sanders, according to this sage (?) wisdom, well…he’s just too, too pie in the sky, too unwilling to compromise, too angry. This article, also from Rolling Stone Magazine, written last year warned that we may have a different Senator Sanders problem.  Too many American just might agree with Bernie. 

Fast forward to today and the mainstream media and the Democratic machine continue to repeat the same old mantra.  Both  insist Sanders doesn’t have a chance. He shouldn’t be taken seriously. He can’t possibly beat the Democrat’s darling. America needs a woman at the helm.  (AKA: Women can not call themselves feminists unless they vote for Clinton).  He doesn’t have the Black vote. (For get that while she was working for Goldwater he was helping to organize sit-ins).  How dare he bring up who contributes to her campaign. Sanders ought to play nice. He should do the honorable thing, admit defeat, and bow out.  Look at the delegate count.

But, guess what mainstream media–America, at least young America, isn’t listening to you anymore. In fact, more and more Americans–new Democrats, young Democrats, and old(er) Democrats–think the party bosses are part of the problem NOT the solution.

This article, also from Rolling Stone, hits on a couple key differences between Sanders and Clinton.  First, Hilary is part of the machine, which may be why she understands how Washington works.  Secondly, even though she like to paint herself as the champion of Black America she has actually been on the wrong side of many racially charged issues.  This article by Michelle Alexander, Author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, is far from an endorsement of Bernie Sanders.  Yet, it does an excellent job discussing the relationship the Clintons have had with Black America and suggests strongly it’s a relationship that ought to be reexamined.

Up until now I have been careful not to criticize the former Secretary of State too harshly.  I have not wanted to need to eat my words should she get the nomination and I begin to urge thinking people to vote for her.  Recently, however, as her national lead has begun to shrink and the primaries move away from the South where she has had a comfortable lead (though might I remind you, in a general election most southern states go red), the Clinton campaign has shown signs of feeling threatened.

A month or so ago articles suggesting the only reason Sanders supporters prefer Bernie to Hilary is because we believe the lies the right has told, started showing up in my news feed.  These Clinton advocates insist Hilary is the most honest candidate running and therefore doesn’t deserve the bad press from the right.  And it is true, according to PolitiFACT Clinton receives more “mostly true” ratings and fewer “pants on fire” ratings than anyone else.  Sanders being her close second.  Yet, honesty, at least for me, is not simply a matter of getting more facts right in a debate.  And integrity is not only measured by staying within the law. These are important qualities, attributes I expect my leaders to hold.  But character is tempered and revealed by more than the jot and tittle of the law.

I have always been disturbed by the notion of super delegates.  And now more than ever.  They feel dishonest to me, like they undermine the purity of the individual’s vote and the notion that a single person,  without fame and without fortune, can make a difference.  So, when I read an article accusing Sanders of foul play because he dared to talk about where Clinton got some of her money (oil and coal, and Wall Street) and then I read this article from Margot Kidder discussing how the Clinton campaign bought the primaries at the Democratic Convention back in August, I saw red.  Of course, buying the primaries of 33 states, including mine, was all done legally, sort of like Trump using our current bankruptcy laws to get rich while others were left without jobs, etc…But, legal and moral are not necessarily the same thing.

I will vote for Bernie Sanders in the primary election because I believe he will push harder and fight more sincerely for the changes I believe need to take place in our country.  I trust him.  He has fought this fight his whole adult life.  But, if in the general election my preferred candidate is NOT the nominee I will still, reluctantly, vote for the Democratic candidate because the alternative is, for me, terrifying.  I indicated in my opening paragraph that the notion that Hilary Clinton could continue the movement Sanders is currently promoting is ludicrous primarily because she has no interest in doing so.  Saying so does not mean, however, that the movement itself will die.
We may face darker days before we greet the dawn.  Our struggle may end up costing us more dearly later than it will if we choose to act now.  But in the end, I believe the sun will rise.  America will find her better self.  We will decide to work and live together rather than surrender to fear and die apart.  We can.  We will.  We must.
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