I’m So Tired, Part Two – Another Rant

I’m #reclaimingmytime because #neverlessshepersisted and I am part of #theresistance.

But, DAMN, I’m tired. I’m even more tired than I was a year ago.

We’ve had 45 in office now since January, and many of the same people are STILL attacking Hillary Clinton. Those same people (and others) are attacking our future as well (see “Kamala Harris”). These BernieBots and third-party voters and stay-at-homers, who through their actions gave us this toxic administration, are still trying to blame the woman who is no longer in public office.

What scares them so? Well, for one, no-one likes to admit they were wrong. Look at how many people said 45 and HRC were basically the same, and even with the truth staring them in the face, they cannot acknowledge they were wrong  (see “more people than I can name”).

For two, I think they are afraid of the truth in Hillary’s book.

We’ve already heard some of it, and they are losing what’s left of their collective minds. But I think it is about.damn.time.

When we will be ready for a woman to be a full human being? To be right and wrong and honest and unkind and kind and forceful and lose her temper and NOT APOLOGIZE? I want to support that woman. I want that woman in office.  Goddamn it, I want to BE that woman.

But that won’t happen in the current environment, and no, it is not because the women out there are not qualified, or not ready, or not whatever aspersion you try to cast because really, you just don’t want to vote for a woman. It won’t happen because we still think of women as “less than” and we try to prove that through the purity testing in which we engage. And no-one, not even Saint Sanders, can pass that test.

So, try something. Take, for example, Kristin Gillibrand, one of my Senators and a personal favorite. And change the name to Kevin. I bet, even if you don’t want to admit, that for a hot second you liked that person better.  Try this any time you want to say about a woman “I would choose her if she only…”, and be honest with yourself if you would test a man the same way.

Really, in the world we should be building, quality is genderless.

But we need to try harder.

 

 

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I’m So Angry – A Rant

I have not written here much since the election. My disillusionment was too great.  So I thanked Secretary Clinton for her awesome service and inspiration, celebrated as much as possible for my birthday and over the holidays, and thought about next steps.  As so many of us are, I am writing and calling and showing up as often as possible to make it clear that this administration is just.not.okay.

thhdynv06tBut that’s not even what I am most angry about. What makes me so damn angry is the absolute denial of those who are still saying “but Hillary” and “Bernie would have”.  You know what?  The house is burning down here, and you are worried about a leaky faucet.  Every single damn non-Republican who voted third party, or stayed home, or worse, voted for 45, brought this on us.  And you need to own it.  No more “Bernie would have won”.  Or “the Primary was rigged”.  Or “I just couldn’t vote for Hillary”.  You screwed up.  And you screwed up for all of us, not just yourself.

No candidate has ever been perfect – even Saint Sanders – but anyone who looked at HRC vs DJT and still did not vote for her is wearing blinders. And yes, it makes me angry every.damn.day.  And no, I’m not going to stop saying so.  I can actually be angry about this and still fight the fire you brought upon us.

And I will hold close to my heart and mind what Hillary said, in that wonderful speech that she was forced to give after you stole the Presidency from the only qualified candidate in the race:

“Please never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it.”

It’s Okay That It’s Not Me

When I was in elementary school, I had my first encounters with politics. I remember Nixon’s resignation (I was seven), and I remember Shirley Chisholm’s campaign for President (though I was five).  By the time I was nine, I thought I wanted a career in politics.  I was going to be the first female President.  I was going to finish what Shirley started.  I kept a notebook full of ideas – I wish I could find it – and this morning, I even texted my cousin, who still teases me about that notebook, to remind her of my early ambitions.

Clearly my life went in a different direction. At about the same time I was keeping that notebook, I saw my first “grown-up” theater – a production of Othello at the Coconut Grove Playhouse, starring the incomparable Samuel E. Wright.  By the end of the play, I had moved to the front row of the almost empty theater, and was weeping non-stop.  (Note:  I finally met Sam in 1997, and yes, I told him my being in the business was all.his.fault.)

However, it was always still in the back of my mind – and often the front – that there are glass ceilings to be shattered, and I got so frustrated anytime a woman was the “first” anything. Shouldn’t these firsts be done by now?  Shouldn’t we working toward being the “best”, not the “first”, instead?

Full disclosure: I did not support Hillary Clinton in 2008, and in fact, I was not a registered Democrat until last year, when I switched from being a life-long Independent.  To vote, I thought at the time, for Bernie Sanders (see, it was possible to change your registration and vote in a closed primary.  Even in New York State!). But over the course of this primary, it became clear to me that supporting Hillary was not only right for me (and my vagina), but the best thing for the country that I love.

As I said here, revolutions are hard fucking work. And Hillary can and will do that work. She is the revolution. She is “change we can believe in”. She is everything I once wanted to be, but so.much.better.

 

You Say You Want A Revolution?*

(*Before you read this, know that it might make you angry.  Or you might agree.  I moderate the comments on this blog, and any courteous discourse is welcome.  Any other type will be addressed.  And know that whatever you may take away from what you read, I will #votebluenomatterwho because #neverTrump.

P.S.  Apologies in advance to the Beatles for what they (or their fans) might see as a heinous misuse of their words…)

True confession:  I’ve never cared that much about politics.  It’s not that I haven’t paid attention, but I’ve never before invested the emotional energy that the current Presidential primaries have drawn from me.  And I’ve learned a lot about myself in the process.

Given my commitment to the labor movement, you may be surprised to know that I am not really a “joiner”.  And in 2008, I did not bother to register as a Democrat to vote in the New York primary, because really, they were all kind of fine with me.  In 2015, though, I did register as a Democrat.  Now, I don’t really give two shits about any political party, but I also know that you can only change the system if you know (and participate in) the system, and I honestly though Bernie Sanders was the answer.

The clown car of Republican candidates that resulted in Donald Trump (DONALD TRUMP!) as their presumptive nominee was both amusing and terrifying to watch, but I read with great care every scrap of information about the Democratic candidates; I watched every debate, every town hall, and every interview (okay, I’m sure I missed some, but I really, really, really tried).  As of the second debate, I became uneasy.  Remember the timing?  We had just seen a great tragedy in Paris – a terrorist attack leading to much death and destruction – and the candidates agreed that they would each get one minute added to their time at the top to talk about that.  And Senator Sanders did not.  He gave the tragedy what seemed like ten seconds, and pivoted to his stump speech.  I was stunned and dismayed.

I’m all for revolution.  I’m in favor of much of what is in that stump speech.  But what had been mild concern during the first debate about ability became full-fledged fear as time went on.  I lost friends and was often attacked as I voiced my opinions on line, but hey, I’m nothing if not stubborn.

Revolutions are hard fucking work.  They take leadership and time and planning and direct action and on the ground operations and flexibility and – well, you get the idea.  I’m not much of a historian (actually, my friends who are historians would probably say I’m not one at all), but you know all those stories we all learned in our history classes about those who took direct action and made change?  Did you miss the part where many of those actions were part of a larger plan, and even if sometimes the timing was driven by the moment, they were ready for that moment?  My favorite example on this is Rosa Parks.  She was part of a movement.  The movement had a plan.  She took her moment.

Failed revolutions start with grand ideas – and often, direct actions – with no plans.  Occupy Wall Street is a great example of a failed revolution.  I know there are those that disagree with me on this, but hey, it’s my blog, and what I saw was a great moment wasted because not only was there no plan, they refused to try to create one.  A plan was too “establishment”, I guess.  All that momentum and energy left us with…a hashtag.

But when you talk about destruction
Don’t you know that you can count me out?…

You say you got a real solution
Well, you know
We’d all love to see the plan

Did you know that the New Left and the counterculture denounced this song?  They felt it displayed fear.  Well, I think it’s damn smart, and I think history shows that incremental change brings lasting revolution.  The kind of revolution we can believe in.

To go back to the beginning…I did say this primary had led to me to learn a lot about myself, and you may ask what.  Well – I knew that I believe in change.  I revel in change.  And I knew that change requires a long, hard slog (and a plan).  I knew that most people don’t actually agree with me to the point that they will fight change with every tool at their disposal, while at the same time, disavowing that that is what is happening.  They claim they are being “cautious” and “responsible” and “thoughtful” and “analytic”.  And I am sure all of that is true.  But regular readers of this blog will know that I am a big fan of the gut decision – and interestingly enough, that the gut decision, in hindsight, always involved all of those traits.

So, what’s new?  I’m getting there, I promise.  And when I can express it in a way that makes sense to anyone but me, I’ll get back to you.  But for now, I can say for sure that I learned #ImWithHer.

 

(And just for fun…http://)

 

 

 

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