quietann: (stupid war)
[personal profile] quietann
Just so everyone starts on the same page, I'm a lifelong democrat, one of those relatively well-off socially liberal sorts. Small-d democrat because every once in a great while, I'll vote for someone from another party. And I will admit to not being 100% on-board with Obama, though I *never* would have voted for McCain (because of pesky things like his record on reproductive rights). And especially with Sarah Palin as his running mate; I view a vote for McCain as likely a vote for Palin, and there is No Way No How I want That Woman sitting in the Oval Office with her finger on the nuclear button.

So anyway, I'm sure anyone who's been listening to the news has heard recordings of some of the scary (IMHO) crowds at McCain/Palin rallies. It started at the RNC on the night of Giuliani's and Palin's speeches... The utter hatred expressed scared the cr*p out of me (because I am a member of several groups the Far Right would just as soon erase off the face of the Earth, as far as I can tell.) The fact that, with the exception of a couple of half-hearted attempts on McCain's part, no one's trying to stop the haters scares me even more. (And I do think McCain tried, but he just sounds so... old and tired, and he's given up I think. Palin doesn't even bother to try. She revels in the hate.)

In contrast... I heard a little piece on NPR yesterday... a very brief recording of what happened when some folks at an Obama rally in Ohio started booing when he mentioned McCain. Obama Shut. Them. Down. In about 3 seconds, using a voice I know well -- my mom's School-Teacher voice, the "You have just blown it, kid, and you'd better stop" voice. I don't remember what he said exactly, but it was something along the lines of "Now I don't want to hear any of that." There was a moment of deafening silence, and then he said something really inspiring, and the crowd was cheering.

Wow. Just... wow.

My friend [livejournal.com profile] cz_unit made a post on Hope versus Hate, back in September. Here is an excerpt.

[Palin]'s all the things we're ashamed of, embarrassed by, or loathing of our selves. And instead of doing something we can channel it into hatred of others.

Contrast that with hope. With hope, you have to take responsibility for what you have done and take steps towards making it better. With hope there is no outlet for your fury other than your own self for being stupid enough to get yourself into a hole. With hope you have to take action to make things better instead of sitting on your couch in front of your repossessed house, curing the "government" or "liberals" or "blacks", or "wetbacks, slopes, wimps, gimps..." and so forth and so on.

With hope you become the change.

There were things about the post I didn't like, but if you want to, you can go read.

This little radio snippet was the perfect demonstration of Hope over Hate.

Date: 2008-10-15 01:14 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] browngirl.livejournal.com
Well done, Senator. Well done. :)

Date: 2008-10-15 01:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dichroic.livejournal.com
I've heard some disturbing stories about the Obama campaign too - like someone offering money to a couple of black guys, bouncers at a bar near the coffeeshop where a friend hangs out, to beat up her husband (in his 60s and infirm) because since he's not voting for Obama he's a "racist and a bigot".

Embarassing. But the big difference is, if both campaigns have had shameful behavior from some supporters, at least none of it's coming from Obama or Biden and they've taken steps to point out the humanity of their opponents. McCain has too, and if he's ineffectual, well, I really do suspect he's getting tired and discouraged. But a lot of it is coming directly from Palin, or presumably her handlers. If there were no other factors in determining my vote, that alone would do it for me.

Date: 2008-10-15 01:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] quietann.livejournal.com
See, I've heard those stories too. But they seem to be about Obama supporters acting badly, completely outside of the campaign structure. And that is bound to happen. When I hear about stuff like this with Sarah Palin, the thing is, she is right there and acting like she condones it. She's been compared to Evita Peron -- an apt comparison, and a scary one.

Date: 2008-10-15 02:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dichroic.livejournal.com
Yeah, that's what I said. (Only in more words.)

Except it's not just that she condones it; she has not *quite* called Obama a terrorist sympathizer in so many words, but that's certainly the bush she's beating around.

Date: 2008-10-15 02:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] browngirl.livejournal.com
like someone offering money to a couple of black guys, bouncers at a bar near the coffeeshop where a friend hangs out, to beat up her husband (in his 60s and infirm) because since he's not voting for Obama he's a "racist and a bigot".

I'm torn between saying, "this is *horrible*, and as a Black woman I completely don't support that" and saying, "a man was shot with an air pistol on the streets of London for wearing an Obama T-shirt, and in Georgia they are selling monkey dolls labeled 'Obama', and..."

So I guess I just said both.

Date: 2008-10-15 02:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dichroic.livejournal.com
It's horrible. Racism and chicanery on both sides are horrible.

BUT: for once I can feel excited about voting for a candidate instead of voting against the other because in this case it seems that the bigotry on one side is *not* coming form the campaign itself and that (as [livejournal.com profile] quietann says) the candidate himself has made it clear that hatred is not welcome in his tent.

Date: 2008-10-15 03:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] coneycat.livejournal.com
It should not be such a big thing that he refused to Go There, but the fact is, not enough politicians take the high road and try to shepherd their supporters toward it. Good for Obama for realizing there are bigger problems than partisan politics, and for not letting partisan politics *become* part of his problems. Well-handled.


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