Okay, I admit it. I’ve been bad (please don’t go back and read my New Year’s resolution about blogging). My partner today encouraged me to write – something about which I’d been thinking for some time.
I think that (for me at least) blogging needs a continuing theme. I had that theme with my Mom, but for the past year have been busy with other stuff that isn’t a ready-for-prime-time blog subject (much as I’d like to). Lucky readers, I have a new theme that should keep me busy, blog-wise, for the next year or so.
My daughter – my only child – is getting married. I’ve never planned a wedding for someone else (although I’ve had a couple myself), and it’ll be an interesting experience, particularly trying to plan long distance. Stay tuned for a mother’s experience . . .
But I digress from the main point of this post. Back in January, I announced my support for John Edwards. My support, while unqualified, was also too late, I fear. It was only a couple of days before he dropped out of the race. In early February, I voted in the Democrats Abroad primary. Before the vote, I was quite conflicted. Even during my more conservative days (yep, I was a Republican – but a progressive one), I considered myself a feminist (still do). So the quandary was real: Hilary Clinton, a competent, smart politician who happened also to be a woman, vs. Barrack Obama, a competent, smart politician who happened to be African American. I think I was slightly tipping toward Clinton, when my partner Don hit below the belt: “Diane, as you’re considering who to vote for, your Mom can’t vote, and don’t forget how she loved Obama.” That tipped the scale for the primary for Obama.
But I knew I could support either Clinton or Obama, and I also saw some egregious sexism used against Clinton (tellingly, Don never saw or understood that).
Fast forward to Clinton’s withdrawal from the race. I thought her concession speech was brilliant, and her promise shone through. But I found so disturbing those Clinton supporters who claimed that they would support McCain over Obama.
I don’t get this at all. How could anyone who supported Clinton even consider McCain over Obama? Clinton and Obama are far closer on every important issue – from Iraq, to health care, to women’s issues (including choice), to the economy.
While sexism, at least in part, hurt Clinton, the cause wasn’t Obama, and the anger shouldn’t be directed to him. I’m confident that as we get closer to the election, cooler heads will prevail and the McCain support nonsense will disappear.
Most importantly, come November, my hope is that Obama will garner the votes not only of all of us Edwards-Clinton supporters, but also of Republicans, Independents, and yes, the apathetic, the apolitical, the cynical, and the anti-political folks.
May we all recognize the opportunity that the 2008 election provides.