It was just yesterday that we shocked the world and elected Barack Obama as our 44th President of the United States. It was yesterday that we carried our dreams into the White House to reform healthcare, Wall Street, education, immigration, climate, the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and repair our deeply broken relationship with the rest of the world. It was just yesterday that we delivered on many of these reforms, but now we know we must continue to push for even more.
No longer will children with pre-existing conditions be denied healthcare. No longer will students be extorted by student loan companies and be denied access to higher education. No longer will someone be punished 100x more for selling the same amount of crack cocaine compared to powder cocaine. No longer will women be subjected to less pay than their male counterparts in the workplace.
No longer will we have an open-ended time line in Iraq or Afghanistan. No longer will we let Wall Street control our economy by betting against the future of America. These are just a few of the major accomplishments we achieved within just 22 months. It is not time to give up our on dreams. In fact, this is the time to dig deeper into our core convictions, finding strength in our resilience and support our team. Because as my brother, Rev. Run, says “team work makes the dream work!”
If we don’t wake up on Tuesday and rush to the poles, by the end of the day, we will find ourselves with an Alice In Wonderland Congress, where up is down and wrong is right, and lies are truth and hating diversity is seen as patriotism. In the new Alice In Wonderland that is today’s Republican Party, Sarah Palin is the Queen of Hearts screaming “Off With Their Heads”; Glenn Beck is the Mad Hatter with all his tears; Rush Limbaugh is the Cheshire Cat, laughing at the madness and loving it.
Unless moderates and progressives quickly put aside their disenchantments and VOTE on Tuesday, we will wake up on Wednesday to newly elected politicians whose meanness, duplicity and downright madness is unique even by the standards of past American moments of extreme right.
Just a few years ago there were unshakable standards of American inclusion in American politics. Trent Lott lost his Senate Majority Leader job for one speech in which he praised the politics of Jesse Helms; George Allen lost his senate seat and with it his presidential ambitions, with his famous “Macaca” moment. These gaffs however are nothing compared to what is now accepted, by a large part of our voting society, as not just acceptable but actually energizing hate speech by candidates for high office. Sharon Angle, with her overtly racist statements and ads against “brown” immigrants, sanctioning of the violent overthrow of a democratically elected US government, and forced births to raped children, is actually ahead in Nevada.
Rand Paul of Kentucky, Joe Miller of Alaska and Carl Paladino in the New York Governor’s race, allow their storm troopers to trample on reporters and activists. Lies about the president’s nationality, about “death panels”, about immigrant crime, FEMA internment camps and other loonie theorie