In “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat” there’s a song which ends with the line “any dream will do.” But if the current campaign has proved anything, it’s proved that that is not true. It is increasingly hard for me to believe that anyone who supported Hillary Clinton during the primaries for any reason other than gender-ONLY would even consider voting for the McCain Palin ticket. In addition, I keep asking myself if I’m missing something in the news… but where is the Clintons’ and Clinton supporters’ high profile, every day on-the-front-lines screaming, cheering support for Obama and Biden??
If women, particularly those who supported Hillary Clinton are in any way inclined to vote for McCain/Palin, it means that the whole Clinton primary candidacy was a sham when it comes to issues and values. What woman who supported Hillary would support a ticket which is committed to the most socially conservative platform ever and which clearly has no real commitment to helping hard working, or would-like-to-be-hard-working people who are struggling to survive in post-Bush America? Why is the American public, or a big part of it at least, such a push over for propaganda?
Why do so many middle income people believe that Obama is going to raise their taxes?
When I was majoring in political science at Barnard College back in the late 60’s I was impressed by the various definitions and components of “propaganda”. I remember “the bandwagon effect”, “glittering generalities”, “the big lie” , “repetition of the big lie”. We are now neck-deep in the most vicious propaganda, and though that is somewhat the nature of campaigning, the Republicans seem to like it, and keep hurling slime, and seem to like believing overly simplistic nasty things that aren’t true, more than the Democrats do, at least the Democrats I know.
Last week when I got an email to pass on about the “list” of books Sarah Palin wanted to ban back in her mayoral days, I passed it on to a bunch of people and by the end of the day, I had a bunch of emails back saying that it wasn’t true.. the list part, not the banning part, which Palin had in fact looked into. I was impressed how many of my contacts took the time to speak up for truth. I am not aware of such a trend in the form of moderate Republicans speaking out strongly against the nastiness and lying and spinning of information being dished up as the current Republican campaign against Barack Obama.
Yesterday as I was talking to a wealthy neighbor who I knew to be a Republican Obama supporter, I decided to keep my distance from politics, even though I was champing at the bit to do anything I could to get her to influence her husband for Obama. Well, she brought it up and told me that he was actually supporting Obama. I got really excited. If this staunch Bush supporter and life long Republican rich man was supporting Obama… there was hope! Later that day, I dared ask a patient of mine, whom I knew to be an Obama supporter, if she knew Republicans who are supporting Obama. “Oh, LOTS”, she said. Wow, I thought. I jumped to a new conclusion. I’m thinking there are LOTS of Thinking Republicans out there who really are made sick by the behavior of their party and party spokespeople., but aren’t talking about it enough yet.
I dream that more and many more Sensible Republicans and Thinking Republicans (thinking is the new elitism for the propaganda lovers), will join in and support Obama who has emerged as a thoughtful, creative, extremely intelligent, insightful, warm, competent and effective candidate. I dream that they will do it loud and clear. I dream that the Clintons take much more of a lead in a very vocal and visible outpouring of support for the Obama ticket. I dream that the Republicans will embrace careful consideration of facts and honesty, and eschew nastiness. I dream that America is, as Obama has been saying , “better than that”. I dream that we are good enough as a nation to embrace an African American man as our leader, as he embraces the dream of his mentors, predecessors, and his own personal vision of change. I dream that we could become a country that knows that men can be nice, intelligent and even kind and still be, or especially be, respectable leaders, contrary to the embarrassing statements of some Republicans like Joe Bruno and Rudy Giuliani, who disparaged Obama’s style and character. There IS a fierce urgency of now. Any dream will not do.