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Election Day — Please VOTE!

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I want to post today, just because we’ve been on such a long journey together this election year. I feel I should say something profound or moving or vote-changing.

You’ve heard me rant and despair and rage and think things through and then rant and despair and rage all over again. You’ve heard a bit of my political history, too much about Orange Man, and not enough about Bernie Sanders (the one with integrity). You’ve witnessed my reluctant evolution towards Hillary Clinton, my second thoughts, and my eventual tears at the voting booth last week: A woman! I voted for a woman president!!

But I got nothin’. No profundities, no pearls of wisdom, no final thoughts. I am still in a state of shock that my country is so close to electing a dangerous, impulsive, mentally unbalanced megalomaniac to oversee our nuclear weapons, not to mention the rest of the country. I suppose I’ll be musing about that for quite a time.

I hope to be celebrating tonight. I can’t entertain any other thought. I have no fear left to offer Donald Trump. I have to breathe again.

And so today I’m cleaning my house. I might listen to NPR a little later to hear some exit polls and punditry. Otherwise, I look forward to roaming from watch party to watch party tonight as the map turns blue. God willing.

Here’s my profound message for this Election Day, 2016:

PLEASE GO VOTE, NOW!

Here is a link to find your polling place

You can also find important down-ballot races and ballot initiatives in your locality here.

God bless the United States of America.

Once the flag made me proud. Later, it made me mad. Now it makes me sad.

Bernie is Still Speaking Truth: Please Listen

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I don’t generally like to get in “other people’s business,” and I don’t like other people in mine. But boundaries aren’t always clear.

The “facts” on which we base our beliefs and opinions these days can get pretty murky, what with all the “fake news,” conspiracy theories, and inexplicable disdain for experts and scientists on the part of half of America’s population. Two people look at the same issue and see not just different solutions, but different realities. And people can get mad when someone interferes with their reality.

So when are the stakes high enough for me to risk overstepping my bounds?

Now.

I’ve decided that for the next few days, I’m not going to worry about boundaries. This election is everyone’s business. Donald Trump’s poison is, unfortunately, everyone’s business. And most of all, climate change is everyone’s business.

With that said, I invite you to watch this short clip of Bernie Sanders explaining why we simply can’t sit out this election and why we should vote for Hillary Clinton. So actually, it’s Bernie getting in your business, not me. But I agree with him 100%, as usual.

I dedicate this blog to my Bernie-friends, especially those who intend to vote third party, write in, or sit out this election. Please don’t. The planet depends on you. Hillary needs to win the popular vote as well as the electoral college. Both are at risk on Tuesday. Your vote really, really counts. Bernie says.

 

On Voting

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I have always loved voting. I get all mushy and patriotic about it, and I even enjoy waiting in long lines with my neighbors. (Granted, I know I’m among friends here in this very blue county where I’d probably be considered a moderate, were there a ranking.)

So I was a little disappointed when I got to the early voting location yesterday and found no lines whatsoever. The parking lot was jammed, but there were so many volunteers helping out that we moved along as easily as lies spilling from Donald Trump’s lips.

Vote early if you can! Let's get this baby done.

Vote early if you can! Let’s get this baby done.

I paused to extend good wishes to the husband of a judicial candidate and then stopped to argue with another man who was loudly supporting a ballot initiative I oppose. And then before I knew it, I was signed in and walking with ballot in hand towards one of several dozen voting booths.

Has this been a long journey, or what? I am so glad that the end is in sight. One week from today.

I’ve invested too much emotion into this election for far too long, and it’s been almost exclusively negative emotion. Fear, anger, disgust, righteous indignation, even shock. When I’ve thought about the way history will record this election, I feel embarrassed and mortified. Approximately forty percent of Americans are set to vote for . . . well, you know what they’re voting for. I can’t bear to talk about it anymore. It’s venomous at best.

And so as I walked towards the voting booth, it caught me by complete surprise when my throat suddenly closed up and my vision was blurred by tears of joy and pride.

Oh. My. God. I am about to vote for a woman for President of the United States and she might very well win. Oh. My. God.

History in the making!

History in the making!

Please vote, friends. Do not sit this one out.

Trumpty Dumpty’s Great Debate

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TRUMPTY DUMPTY’S GREAT DEBATE

Trumpty Dumpty wanted a wall,

Trumpty Dumpty had a great fall;

All the GOP’s forces and all the GOP’s men,

Couldn’t put Trumpty together again!

° ° °

Hillary’s Pillory wants Trumpty, y’all

Hillary’s Pillory is ready for his fall;

Through her heart courses a genuine yen,

To debate Trumpty over and over again.

humpty

October 9, 2016

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Trump’s Disagreement with Reality

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Trump’s Disagreement with Reality

You can disagree with a policy. You can disagree with an action. You can disagree with an interpretation or an assumption or even a worldview. But when you disagree with reality, you are either lying to others or lying to yourself.

Which category Mr. Trump’s disorder falls into is a mystery to me: probably both. I am not a psychologist (if I were, this election would have exploded my head months ago), but I am fascinated by what must go on in that orange head. 

One of my favorite moments during the presidential debate Monday night was Hillary’s line, “Donald, I know you live in your own reality.”

Bingo. I think that’s quite true.

A Big, Beautiful Wall

The Republican candidate’s brain seems to function like a second or third-grader’s. It’s motivated by wanting people to notice him and praise him, wanting to appear grand while always knowing underneath that he’s never going to be good enough to please Daddy.

I think he got emotionally stunted in elementary school and simply never grew into an adult who accepts and operates within reality. He does not have a moral center because he never matured enough to develop one. Instead, he built a “big, beautiful wall” around himself so that nothing and nobody could hurt him. He built it out of money and denial and meanness. And behind his wall, he hides from reality and launches tweets at anyone who disagrees with him.

Sadly, I believe his emotional immaturity and false reality ballooned into a personality disorder. At least one. But there I go again, trying to diagnose him. I have a terrible need to understand this entity that is threatening my country and the world.

Recovery is an Option, Mr. Trump

I wonder sometimes if the reason the man creeps so deeply into my psyche is that I can relate at some level. I struggle against the very same bugaboos that haunt him, the need for praise and recognition, the belief that my way is the only way, the insecurity that drives grandiosity — all driven by fears.

But I’ve worked crazy-hard to recover from my brokenness. It’s meant humbling myself and accepting hard truths. Through spiritual pursuits and practices, honest relationships, psychotherapy, and twelve-step recovery for various emotional addictions, I have escaped the house of mirrors with no true center where I used to live and am coming into an entirely new reality. One where I am good enough: beloved, even.

I get how emotional pain can leave you stranded in your own reality, isolated and afraid. I am sad for you, Donald.

Let’s Face Reality

But what of Trump’s followers? That’s a harder question and one that I  hesitate to address because I don’t want to come across as telling anyone that my reality is correct and theirs is incorrect. There’s enough of that going around, and it’s part of what’s bringing our country down.

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But please just take a big, self-reflective breath and think about this: How could you hear a man interrupt a woman over and over with “I never said that,” and “That’s not true,” and “Wrong, wrong,” without googling to find out who is telling the truth? Do you just assume that the male is always right? Or do you actually hate Clinton so much that you don’t want to know the truth — so much that you would vote for a pathological liar over her? Yes, I grant you, she is not honesty personified. And she’s secretive. Almost all politicians become like that.

But, but . . . Donald is sick. Unwell. Unbalanced. How could you watch the debate and deny that reality?

Imagine the man who turned up at that debate talking to FOREIGN LEADERS, for heaven’s sake! Tell me, didn’t you feel even the teensiest bit of relief when Clinton spoke directly to the rest of the world, trying to reassure them that we have not lost our minds, that we will stand by our agreements and will not catapult into an alternate universe? To me, it felt like an adult had finally entered the room to restore order.

I don’t agree with all of Clinton’s policies or actions, but I want a grown-up in the White House. One who doesn’t make faces and yell and interrupt and insult people and live inside a second-grader’s fortress of lies.

In response to a WordPress word prompt: disagree.

Political (R)evolution

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I’m thinking about giving Hillary some money. I wasn’t planning on it — I am at best a grudging supporter, my teary-eyed pride over a woman nominee notwithstanding. Hillary is way too conservative and cozy with corporations on the issues I care most about. She always has been; it’s her default position.

I was and still am a Bernie supporter, and now, like the majority of his flock (thank God), I trust his judgement that the only way to defeat Orange Man is to vote for Hillary. I’m grateful that Bernie has nudged HRC and the Democratic party to the left; I hope the progressives will eventually disband their circular firing squad and unite to make sure Bernie’s progress is not lost.

So this is where I’ve been for a few weeks: I will vote for HRC, but that is where it stops. I will not volunteer, I will not give money. (I generally do quite a bit of both during election years.) I was holding in reserve the possibility that if things looked bad for the Dems in New Hampshire, where I have a place to stay, I would put on my super hero outfit and fly up to volunteer in October, as I did for Kerry and Obama. But my heart wasn’t in it. It was all about stopping Trump on November 8th.

But. But. The more I read his rants and watch his finger-pointing and see his — ahem — unusual supporters, the more I realize this is not a one-off thing. This is not just about keeping his small, orange hands off the nuclear arsenal and his big, orange bigotry out of the Supreme Court.

Interesting people in Daytona Beach. Photo courtesy of Matthew Danver

Interesting people in Daytona Beach. Photo courtesy of awesome godson, Matthew Danver

Donald Trump is not going away. If he loses (God, PULEEEZE), he will claim the election was rigged. He’s already saying so. Presidential candidates do not do that. Lord knows, if anyone had a right to question the legitimacy of an election, it was Al Gore in 2000, but he chose to put what he saw as the stability of his country first.

Not Orange Man. He will continue to travel around and rant before adoring, cheering crowds in order to feed his voracious ego. He will continue to incite violence and division with his claims of a rigged election in order to prove his power over people. His narcissistic sickness will not allow him to stop.

Not in My Country!

So I’ve come to the conclusion that the “homegrown demagogue,” as President Obama (only slightly indirectly) called him, needs to be utterly repudiated, rejected, and shut down. HRC needs to win a solid majority of the electoral votes and win big in the popular vote. I had been toying with the idea of voting for Green Party candidate Jill Stein, since I vote in the safely blue state of Maryland where I can afford to vote on principle without fear of helping Trump. But now I think not. I want my vote to be a loud, clear NO! NOT NOW! NOT EVER! NOT IN MY COUNTRY!

And so I’m sending HRC some money. Twenty-seven bucks at a time, so she knows it’s from a progressive Bernie supporter, and hopefully some intern somewhere in the bowels of the campaign will put a check mark next to “a climate change and Citizens United voter.”

I know a couple of Bernie supporters who will yell “sell out!” at me just as harshly as the HRC die-hards were yelling “traitor!” at me a month or two ago. Save your breath, y’all. I’m not hating on you, and I’d appreciate the same. I’m having my own personal political (r)evolution where love trumps hate. You can do your own thing.

I Vote With My Brain, Not My Breasts

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I VOTE WITH MY BRAIN, NOT MY BREASTS:

I haven’t written about the Democratic presidential primary because I have friends standing on both sides of the growing Hillary-Bernie divide, and I respect them all. But as a woman who supports Bernie, I’m getting just a little tired of Hillary’s supporters trashing me.

I don’t trash them. I’m sure they’ve thought it through and decided that Hillary best represents their priority interests. Don’t I deserve the same right? If abortion rights or women’s pay or healthcare are among your priorities, go for Hillary, by all means.

My priorities happen to be protecting our planet and instilling some corporate responsibility in America, so I’m supporting Bernie. It seems a clear choice. Hillary sometimes follows along on these issues, but they are obviously Bernie’s priorities. She didn’t even say the word “climate” in her New Hampshire concession speech. Wow, just wow. No wonder young people aren’t toeing the line for her.

Young women who support Bernie were bearing the brunt of these condescending attacks, until Madeleine Albright reminded Sanders voters the other day that it’s broader than that: “There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.” Now she defends her remarks by saying that women, in general, “are very judgmental of each other.” Who is being judgmental here, Madeleine?

Photo: Bloomberg News

It’s really not that funny

At least Gloria Steinhem apologized for saying that young women only like Bernie because they’ll meet more guys on his campaign. Whether she “misspoke” or was “misinterpreted” (she said both), we KNOW she didn’t really mean that: how un-feminist would that be??

Anyway, it’s not just young women now, it’s all female Bernie supporters who are on the highway to hell.

The marching orders are clear: if you are a woman, you must vote for Hillary Clinton. I can’t imagine anything more insulting or sexist. It doesn’t make sense either. Do they think they are going to change my mind with that kind of vitriol? It didn’t work for Hillary in 2008, and it’s not working now. I just hope the young women being insulted don’t get so turned off to Hillary that they end up not voting in the general election if she’s the nominee.

It’s funny, it wasn’t Albright’s vicious rhetoric that caused me to write this blog (and to put a Bernie sticker on my car). photo (39)

I write because I fear that this nastiness is contagious. The other night, a young woman whom I’ve known since she was a toddler wrote on Facebook that she was “very disappointed” in me. She’s generally a kind, respectful, thoughtful person. So the fact that she thinks it OK to judge and criticize a friend for supporting someone other than her own choice . . . well, that’s just not OK, ladies.

I’ve never been a huge fan of Hillary personally — she’s too moderate and beholden to the political status quo for my taste. But I haven’t written about that because I don’t think we need anymore negativity out there. She would be a fine president, perhaps on a par with Obama. And certainly preferable to any of the yahoos the Republicans are running. But still, she represents the political status quo. No foundational changes to a dramatically broken system.

Bernie’s cry that “Enough is enough!” captures my sentiments exactly. It goes for the country, and it goes for the Hillary camp’s insulting attacks on women, too.

This particular middle-aged, white, female voter does not engage in “group think.” I vote with my brain, not my breasts.

Photo attribution: Bloomberg News

 

 

 

 

 

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