As an Obama supporter, I would have been extremely disappointed, even mad, if he did not get the nomination for Democratic Presidential Candidate. There was a time when things looked bleak and I said to myself that I would vote for ANYBODY rather than Hillary Clinton. So I understand what Hillary supporters are feeling. I watched the Rules and Bylaws Committee Meeting aftermath and the women who were so angry; they were yelling and screaming and crying. Their emotions were overflowing and they felt betrayed by somebody.
In trying to keep this in perspective, I tried to put myself in their shoes. How would I have felt if it were Obama who was “robbed”? Who would I lash out at on my blog or elsewhere?
After much thought, I came to some conclusions. Barack Obama himself was not the reason that Hillary Clinton did not win the nomination. He did not decide how the Bylaw Committee would vote. He did not say anything even remotely misogynistic about Hillary Clinton or any other woman. He has no control over how the press decides to cover Hillary and her campaign. Yet these fervent Hillary supporters, with all of their displaced anger, are willing to punish Barack Obama by not supporting him, or voting for him. I understand that they may want to punish the Press, or even specific pundits or on-air journalists. I understand that they may be enraged at publications like the New York Times, or the Washington Post, a specific Blog or Blogger. But to punish Barack Obama and cause such polarization within the Democratic party because of things beyond the candidate’s control seems misguided.
The same would be true if roles were reversed. I could not blame Hillary Clinton herself if Barack Obama did not win the nomination. She would have had nothing to do with it, other than run her campaign as best she could. She has no control over what the Press says, what bloggers say, or how people vote, etc.
I find it hard to believe that any voting Democrat would punish the other candidate and vote for John McCain. If they did cast their vote for McCain, or refuse to vote at all, they would realistically only be punishing themselves.
We all know the differences between the platforms of Obama and Clinton are few and far between. However, if you compare the collective platforms of Obama and Clinton as “Democrats”, to those of the Republicans and John McCain, you will see the polar opposites.
McCain can bellow as loud as he wants that he is not a continuation of the Bush presidency. But the basic tenets of McCain and the Republican agenda are the same as George W. Bush. There may be some minor differences, but if McCain were to take office today, you would not notice a difference in our Foreign Policy, our Economy, our Health Care System, or anything else that makes a difference to each of us as Americans. In fact, unless someone told us that McCain took over, we would never notice.
For Democrats, this election is NOT about Barack Obama, and I think Barack himself would agree. This election is about us; each and every one of us as individuals. It is our responsibility to get the word out about Barack Obama as our vehicle for the kind of change this country needs. He is our vehicle to restore our place in the world as the best country in the world, to inspire us to be the best we can be, to solve huge problems like the Iraq War, ignoring Afghanistan, high gas prices, the economy in general, education, and health care. It is our responsibility as Democrats to talk to Independents and Republicans and try to convince those on the fence that Obama is the right choice for this country. There are those in the Republican base whose mind you will never change so don’t waste your time there.
I do not tend to stand on my soapbox and herald the Democratic Party. I am not even registered as a Democrat; I am unaffiliated. I wasn’t even “political” until Bush’s second term. I was absolutely blown away, depressed, angry, sad, and bewildered that he was elected to a second term. And I blame every person who cast his or her ballot for George W. Bush for the condition in which we find our country today. That’s a lot of anger and baggage to carry around and I am trying to let it go. But I feel if I don’t speak out, and speak out loud and early, that it might happen again. I can’t imaging how I would feel on November 4th, or 5th depending, if McCain is elected as the 44th President of the United States. We will pay for it in cash, tears, and blood. The middle class will disappear, and we will never restore our place in the world as a beacon of hope. The Iraq War will trudge onward and Al Queda in Afghanistan, where the real war should be, will continue to be ignored.
Now is the time, and I challenge each of your who truly wants the right kind of change in this country, to go out and do something about it. Help restore the United States of America to its former glory. I don’t want to sound corny or poetic, but it is time for America to rise like a phoenix to a place high enough that the rest of the world can see the light.