We are close.
Can you believe how close we are?
It was not until I watched Senator Hillary Clinton Tuesday evening at the Democratic National Convention that I realized how close we were to actually electing a minority to the White House. She gave the good of the party speech I pleaded with Al Gore to give months ago.
At approximately 8:45pm August 26th, 2008, Senator Clinton took the stage. Introduced by her daughter, Chelsea Clinton, to a montage highlighting the matriarchal line from Chelsea, through Hillary, Hillary’s mother, and her grandmother; Senator Clinton came out to raucous applause.
On occasion at my job that partially pays the bills, I have to monitor the calls of others to ensure they are doing their job and not giving away the company in free product. This is maddeningly mind-numbing work but it keeps me off the phone (which is even more mind-numbing). Today was one of those days where I requested to do the job.
On this particular day I had the wonderful experience of listening to a call between one of our female representatives and a female customer. Both were happy and laughing, but that is not the reason this story comes to mind. Neither woman seemed very aware of what they were doing (by the sound of exhaustion in their voices it was probably due to a shared long day on the job) and after uncountable minor hiccups, backtracks, repeated questions and statements, and good laughs shared by both; the customer popped off with “you know I’ve had this problem all day and I just tell people ‘I’m female, blond, and over fifty so back off.'” My representative replied with “I’m female, blond, and over fifty too so I understand.”
Most people would take that little exchange as a light-hearted example of working-class females bonding over shared work-related experiences. Had I been one of those people I’m sure this little diatribe would not be written.
I can not stand when people make statements that only reinforce the dominant and oppressive viewpoint that all women, all light-haired, and all older people are stupid and prone to making mistakes. It seems they expect us to take pity on them for a shortcoming they probably do not really have. Or worse yet, being so used to the same kind of patronizing from others they chalk up any mistake to the fact that they are a woman, or they’re blond, or they’re just old. Furthermore they are compounding the issue by adding up the unmistakable traits of all three in an attempt to justify a much bigger mistake. Where is this going to end?
For a candidate who’s platform for the last year has been one of Change and Hope, I have seen neither of late. Between Senator Obama’s run of attack ads on Senator McCain and the most recent pouncing on McCain, I find myself questioning exactly what change Obama is going to bring about when he resorts to the same old political game? What hope is Obama going to bring about when it seems he is doing his level best to sink to the level of every other politician?
And where was the campaign of change, who has been largely running on the “lifting up the middle class” rhetoric, when the middle class workers of Wal-Mart were being lied to about pending labor law reforms and being led to believe a Democratic win would be bad for business? The perfect opportunity presented itself to cement his place as the candidate for change, and he may have missed it. Hopefully, Senator Obama’s VP pick will be able to attack where he can not.
The next question should be asked, do we blame Senator Obama for these gaffes, or David Plouffe, his campaign manager?
Then we all get the text message at 2:30 in the morning telling us that Senator Job Biden has been chosen as Obama’s running mate. Within minutes of taking the podium in Illinois, Obama changed his message to accomodate the newest addition saying “”Joe Biden is that rare mix. For decades, he has brought change to Washington, but Washington hasn’t changed him.”
Not to be outdone, Senator McCain released two ads attempting to capitalize on Senator Biden’s verbal vomit early in the primary season and the angst of Hilary supporters everywhere.
Nothing short of finding out Obama has flat-out lied to us for the last year will keep me from voting for him in November. For now, though, I’m dissappointed. Anyone else who is should email him and say so too.