Monday, March 18, 2019

He's planted a flag on a small corner of my heart

Last week, my President threatened half the country. Here's what he said to Brietbart: “You know, the left plays a tougher game, it’s very funny. I actually think that the people on the right are tougher, but they don’t play it tougher. Okay? I can tell you I have the support of the police, the support of the military, the support of the Bikers for Trump – I have the tough people, but they don’t play it tough — until they go to a certain point, and then it would be very bad, very bad."

Over the weekend, my President had harsher words for SNL, who teased him, and Fox, who suspended Judge Jeanine, than for White Supremacists.

My President, who wraps himself literally in the flag and brags about his support for veterans, made fun yet again of a dead war hero. John McCain served voluntarily in Vietnam, and President Trump had bone spurs.

And there are "Christians" across the blogosphere who insist that this President is their guy.

It all makes me a little sick to think about.

On the other hand, Beto O'Rourke is asking us to "demonstrate our resolve, our creativity and our courage." He promises his campaign will be positive. A campaign that includes all of us.

Beto O'Rourke is not talking about the grievances of the past. He's talking about fighting the good fight for a better future.

I'm a little in love with Beto O'Rourke.

Oh, it's early yet. I don't know where Beto is on many specifics, and when I find out, I may not love him at all anymore.

I've always gotten a kick out of Joe Biden, and believe he is an exceptionally good man. It would really hurt me to vote against him.

But then, President Trump dismissed Beto because of the way he uses his hands* and I felt the need to leap to the Congressman's defense.

My politically astute and involved nephew is back with Bernie, but was not surprised by my fascination with Beto. "He reminds you of Obama, doesn't he?"

January 27, 1992
"Well, yeah," I lied. But my nephew, a college freshman, was not yet born the last time I felt this way about a candidate. After 12 years of Reagan-Bush (or, as Don Henley referred to them, "Those tired old men that we elected King"), I yearned to hear from someone to connect to emotionally, a candidate who "felt our pain." Someone who, as Abraham Lincoln said, "touched the better angels of our nature."

I ache for that now. I want a leader who won't fuel our anger about what's gone in the past, but instead who encourages us: "Don't stop thinking about tomorrow."

Intellect is important. But so are imagination and charisma.

Tonight I'm watching Elizabeth Warren work an Iowa crowd. She's tough. She's smart. She's gifted at taking complex issues and making them accessible. Good for her!

And how can you not admire Joe Biden's courage, optimism and common touch?

But I remember 2004 so very well. John Kerry is a good man. He was prescient and smart and dedicated and serious. But he couldn't win. I learned my lesson. I've worked on winning campaigns and losing campaigns and winning campaigns are better.

In 2020, winning is literally more important than ever.

And I know me rather well. I bet I already know how I vote on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.


*Hands that are bigger than Trump's, I'm sure.