mardi 21 octobre 2008

Reason to be hopeful, reason to be appalled

By Pistol Tanker Palin

I don't know what to say anymore.

There has to be a level. A place where decency and humanity, respect and tolerance are the guidelines followed by a vast majority of citizens. I am beginning to see that I equate it with all that is good, and not some neutral place where all is neither very good, nor very bad.

There is good, and there is bad. I have decided today that there is no qualification of either that can work.

I am struggling as a human being who wants all of us in the place where good governs our behavior towards one another, our fellow creatures of the earth, and our planet itself.

I count the numbers coming one by one, couple by couple, family by family, group of friends by group of friends, teams of advocates for society and good government by teams of like.

200,000 in Berlin
My American brother from Austin, traveling in Europe with another American friend from Houston was there.

75,000 in Portland, Oregon

84,000 in Denver, Colorado

175,000 in St. Louis and Kansas City, Missouri, and

Sarah Palin says she can raise those kinds of crowds, if they'll give her a chance. Whose stopping her? Even if she could, they'd never look or act like these crowds.

Update, October 22: This is from my friend, Jericho, who was at the Miami rally he next morning:
What a contrast to a McCain / Palin rally: 30,000 strangers gathered in the hot afternoon sun and we left as 30,000 friends. No one shouted out "Kill Him!" or "Terrorist" or anything negative - heck, the folks on the podium attempt to start a wave during the break between the Mayor's talk and the Obama's arrival.

About the only disappointment I heard all day was from people who could not see over the throngs of other people to get a look at Obama and the other speakers. So you know what people started doing?

Passing back their expensive digital cameras through the crown so that people could see!

Which do you want to be a part of?


The Palin mobs

They have yelled "Treason!" and "Kill him!" and "Off with his head."

They have compared him to Charles Manson.

And, they have done these things within the sight and hearing of Senator John McCain, his wife, Governor Sarah Palin, and her husband, and they did not tell them no. They did not tell them to stop. They did not ask them to lower their signs because the offenses written were not true, to still their accusations because they are unjustified and unjustifiable.

In fairness, McCain has responded a few times, but the fear and the anger are bigger than he is. I am genuinely confused by him. When Keith Olbermann compared Sarah Palin to 90-year-old Addie Polk, saying "They are both in situations that are beyond their ability to cope, they are both stuck in a crucible caused by forces they cannot comprehend, they are both unable to understand what they are doing," he wasn't thinking of John McCain, but I think he forgive him right along with Sarah Palin and Addie Polk now, too.

My French husband in shocked by this behavior, and he cannot understand why we give press attention to these terrible things. Why do we not treat them like the aberrations they are, and kill these happenings off by depriving them of attention, like we deprive bacteria of air? I can understand what he is saying, but we cannot. Or, maybe he is right. Perhaps it would be better. Deal with them quietly. Do not give encouragement to those who would agree. Isolate them.

It is another way to understand it. But, we shine a light on it, call it out, excoriate it, and it continues to happen.

And tens of thousands continue to come to show their support for Senator Barack Obama. They are coming to show their support for what they believe in, for the rules that govern their lives: love they fellow neighbor as you love yourself.

It's that simple. It's hard to do, but once you start, and once you reach out your hand to the person next to you, and you look at him and see him for what he is, a black man, an Asian woman, an elderly white woman, a young white man, a teenage black girl, a child, and you say, "I see you. I see your race and your gender, your age and your life in your face and body, and I accept you," we begin to form crowds so big that no one can stop us, shoulder to shoulder, saying, "No, you will not destroy decency. You will act to hurt, and you will cause hurt, but you will not stop us. We will only get stronger."

Obama rally with Hillary Clinton
Orlando, Florida
October 20, 2008

Anti-Palin or Pro-Obama?

We need to refrain from the sort of spectacle that anti-Palin protestors made in Grand Junction, Colorado yesterday, when they ran out in front of her motorcade. The difference is anti-Palin versus pro-Obama. You can see it in the behavior of those who came to protest, or to show their support yesterday. There is no Obama supporter who is pro-Palin, but we show our support, and talk about our reasons for deploring Sarah Palin.

The Reverend Martin Luther King called for peaceful demonstrations for social justice. We have to hold back. He have to let the rule of law take care of those who hurt and kill in their fear and ignorance. Where the forces of the law will not act, we must gather and force action, peacefully.

We can do it because we are far greater in number and strength. We always were. It's nothing new. The difference is that we recognize one another now, we have left the comfort of our homes and isolated lives to communicate, to exchange, to learn about one another, to care about one another, and to work together to elect Senator Obama president.

We have laughed, argued policy and point of view, we have formed families through our commonly held beliefs and caring. Our families are multi-racial. They cross state and country boundaries. They include teenagers and middle-aged people and retired folks who talk to one another, save each other from despair, plan for the future, share information and encourage one another.

We have learned that we do not want to live without one another anymore, even though we have never met. We might never have been the image of a friend or brother the other would have imagined for herself, but we have learned that appearance means nothing. In our virtual world, it is taken away, and all that remains is what we offer of ourselves.

We can spot the psychopaths, and we turn them out. They can try to harm us, tell us how to do things, and take away what we make for ourselves and enjoy, but they cannot succeed. We are smarter and we are more resourceful, and we are far more committed.

We can spot the trolls. They don't even try to conceal themselves. They are the immature, the scared, the belligerent. They don't respond to a reminder that rules of engagement need only be respected for them to be welcome, even if they disagree.

And, it's okay to say, "F*** you, Sarah Palin."

Jon Stewart in Boston

It's alright because,

These Americans shot a bear

I need to count those numbers coming to the Obama rallies. I need to count them and repeat them like my rosary, my Hail Mary, my prayer against the kind of sickness showing itself in my first country, the country I grew up in, the one that taught me what democracy, freedom, decency and Hope meant. I need them because they shot a bear cub.

And they dumped it at the entrance to the Western University of Carolina entrance, at the base of the Catamount Statue, and they covered it's head with stapled Obama signs.

Someone suggested in the comments that we shouldn't make to much of this, saying it was probably just teenagers in hunting season with a dead bear cub on their hands who didn't know what to do with it and turned it into a joke.

A joke? That is a joke?

They shot a bear cub. Not a 500 lb trophy-bear, but a cub. They didn't know what to do with it? Try skinning it and eating the meat, not making a disgraceful political exhibit of its body.

Looks like we'll have to add political to the list of hate crimes punishable by law.
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