Wednesday, September 05, 2012

A dose of hope for America

Well now, who knew that Cory Booker was almost an Iowa boy, descended from great-grandparents who came from Alabama in search of opportunity to the coal mines of legendary Buxton, just down the road in Monroe County? And that his 94-year-old grandmother and her siblings were born and raised in Des Moines?

All sorts of interesting and inspiring stuff this week as the Democratic National Convention launches in Charlotte --- an energized rainbow coalition contrast to the sad spectacle of scared old white people and their shape-shifting "nice guy" leader huddled in Tampa last week, strategizing to resist --- even undo ---progress.

Newark, N.J., Mayor Booker (left) talked about his family ties to the nation's first caucus state Monday during a meeting with Iowa delegates, then on Tuesday delivered a powerful not-in-prime-time speech presenting the party platform --- including economic renewal that benefits everyone (not just those with as much if not more money than Mitt Romney) and commitments to marriage equality, the rights of women to deal with their own reproductive issues and universal access to affordable health care.

But Tuesday evening belonged to Michelle Obama and Julian Castro. Wasn't Obama's speech amazing? One of the great strengths of Democrats is our ability to find candidates with spouses of equal stature --- Eleanor Roosevelt, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Hillary Clinton --- and now Michelle Obama. That ability gives a guy hope for the day when the focus will shift to nominating a presidential candidate with a First Gentleman of similar stature.

And it will be interesting to see where Castro, now mayor of San Antonio, goes. How cool would it be if at the end of a few more four-year cycles we could have a president with Hispanic roots in the White House? Castro certainly looks as if he could be a candidate for that, given a few more years of experience. He's got a twin brother, too --- just in case.

Despite occasional setbacks, Democrats are the future. That doesn't mean the Republican party is without potential to become a powerful, progressive and constructive balancing agent. Just that it's going to take a lot of funerals to get rid of the old, wizened and terrified white patriarchy and their right wing Christianist masters; and a lot of guts and infusions of youth to cut loose from those sad racist, sexist and homophobic burdens.


Anonymous said...

Frank, Thank you for your way with words--you have expressed my sentiments perfectly. Virginia

Anonymous said...

Exactly!! Mary