And you thought you were bitter!

Adam Felber’s Fanatical Apathy blog posts his own concession speech, worth reading in toto. The best bits:

There are some who would say that I sound bitter, that now is the time for healing, to bring the nation together. Let me tell you a little story. Last night, I watched the returns come in with some friends here in Los Angeles. As the night progressed, people began to talk half-seriously about secession, a red state / blue state split. The reasoning was this: We in blue states produce the vast majority of the wealth in this country and pay the most taxes, and you in the red states receive the majority of the money from those taxes while complaining about ’em. We in the blue states are the only ones who’ve been attacked by foreign terrorists, yet you in the red states are gung ho to fight a war in our name. We in the blue states produce the entertainment that you consume so greedily each day, while you in the red states show open disdain for us and our values. Blue state civilians are the actual victims and targets of the war on terror, while red state civilians are the ones standing behind us and yelling “Oh, yeah!? Bring it on!”

More than 40% of you Bush voters still believe that Saddam Hussein had something to do with 9/11. I’m impressed by that, truly I am. Your sons and daughters who might die in this war know it’s not true, the people in the urban centers where al Qaeda wants to attack know it’s not true, but those of you who are at practically no risk believe this easy lie because you can. As part of my concession speech, let me say that I really envy that luxury. I concede that.

Healing? We, the people at risk from terrorists, the people who subsidize you, the people who speak in glowing and respectful terms about the heartland of America while that heartland insults and excoriates us… we wanted some healing. We spoke loud and clear. And you refused to give it to us, largely because of your high moral values. You knew better: America doesn’t need its allies, doesn’t need to share the burden, doesn’t need to unite the world, doesn’t need to provide for its future. Hell no. Not when it’s got a human shield of pointy-headed, atheistic, unconfrontational breadwinners who are willing to pay the bills and play nice in the vain hope of winning a vote that we can never have. Because we’re “morally inferior,” I suppose, we are supposed to respect your values while you insult ours. And the big joke here is that for 20 years, we’ve done just that.

(Via ThePoorMan.net)

AmericaBlog: Did gays cost Kerry the election?

AmericaBlog gives a good answer to the question that has been keeping us up nights:

So did gays cost Kerry the election? No. Gays and lesbians did not push the issue forward and did not press Kerry to be more forthright. It gained national prominence because of court rulings and the natural desire of U.S. citizens to claim their basic civil rights. The Bush campaign played on hate and bigotry — constantly making gay slurs about Kerry and Edwards, passing out fliers in some states that lied and said Kerry would allow gay marriage and ban the Bible, going back on his word and pushing a Constitutional Amendment that for the first time would take away basic civil rights of Americans rather than bringing new people to the table and the list goes on. Gays didn’t lose Kerry the election. But hatred and bigotry against gay Americans certainly helped Bush win.

Blaming gay Americans who believe they deserve the same basic civil rights as everyone else for losing the election is like blaming slaves for the Civil War. Gays aren’t too uppity. Bigots are too backwards.

There’s more, but that’s the core of it. Well said.

Who is really being used here

From Daily Kos, a heartrending story. It’s very easy for us gay folk to feel like we’re being used and abused by Bush, Rove & Co., but we are far from being the worst off. The Republicans are preying off the poor, sick, and ignorant because people who are all three are the easiest to exploit for political gain. If you doubt that, read this:

I work at a domestic violence shelter in a rural conservative district in Mich. that is has had its economy gutted by NAFTA and where Christianity dominates the culture.

Yesterday while reflecting about 4 more years of Bush I was talking with a woman staying in the shelter. I will give her a fake name, lets call her Laura B. Laura is 28, pregnant, (never considered an abortion). She finished highschool and did a year of college before dropping out to have a couple of kids with her military husband. Living in Virginia on base with her autocratic mate (he doesn’t allow the boys 3 and 4 to say “yeap” they have to answer “yes sir”) drove her crazy and she was hospitalized for suicidal thoughts. Military dude divorced her and has custody.

She came home to Mom in Mich and ended up at our shelter to try and sort out her life. (Mom has no money either and her own problems.) We, like all secular agencies, have seen a steady erosion of funds.

Laura B. has found a job working in the kitchen at a local faith based Christian College. She makes $6/hour. She drives a dying Ford Escort wagon pays $2.15/gallon for gas. Her latest crisis is her insurance expired on Oct. 9 (her ex-partner cancelled policy). She needs to come up with $211 to get insurance for one month or face a $1,000 fine if she gets caught driving with no insurance. We have some public transportation, Dial-a Ride, minibus runs between 7 am and 6 p.m., M-F $1.50 one-way. She has to be at work at 6am.

She has been walking to work lately but it is about 2 miles she is 5 months pregnant, it is dark at 5 am, and winter is coming. Solution? Go begging at the churches who seem to have money for these things. They will give her the money if she attends bible school. So last night she was at bible school until 9 p.m.

She has never attended our domestic violence support groups as she is too tired at night and goes to bed early but the bible study was not optional.

She was excited about “God’s message” when she came back.

This week she moves into low income subsidized housing. Her newest crisis is she has found out when the college is closed for the Christmas holiday (one month) she has no employment. She is hoping to find temporary employment as a seasonal retail worker if the Christmas sales are brisk to tide her over. She doesn’t know what she will do when the baby is born, hopes she can work up till the last week (she is on her feet all day with this job). She will be eligible for subsidized daycare.

She voted for Bush because of his “family values.”

New Map

Although I’ll give up on the US of A long before I cede Jesus to the crazies, since five people have sent me this I feel I have to post it.

new_map.jpg

Oh, Carol also sent me a link to our best bulwark against the planned depredations of our rights. If you are not already a member of the ACLU, join today.

Garage Sale Reading

If you’ve got wi-fi, you might find this useful to read while you’re out there on the curb getting rid of your belongings. (And hey, wear a hat. It’s nasty out there and no one likes to sit next to the person with the cold on the airplane.)

“So the wrong candidate has won, and you want to leave the country. Let us consider your options. “

how “morality” is crippling our democracy

I found myself at 1:00 am pondering the bizarre result that “morality” was one of the most important drivers for voters at the polls. Equally disturbing is that an overwhelming majority of those waving this particular flag voted for Bush. In this particular election cycle, “morality” became the pollster/network shorthand for divisive social issues; abortion, gay marriage, stem cell research, equal pay… “Morality” in the United States has become intolerant, hateful and politically handy. (continued)
Continue reading “how “morality” is crippling our democracy”

Dear Mr. Bush

I cried tears of rage and sadness upon learning that John Kerry had stepped down and you had been given the Presidency. You should know that I am not, by nature, a crier and I am not a bitter person. I am not given to melodrama. But I cried and it appears I haven’t finished crying. Furthermore all of my friends have confessed to exactly the same reaction: men, women, white, brown, Jews, Christians, Hindus, we have all wept openly over your success.

Perhaps it is easy for you to dismiss us as overly sensitive liberal pansies. But you might take a minute to listen to what it is that has us so worried from the voice of at least one American.

Plainly put, you terrify us.

Your vision of the US as the champion of democracy at the helm of policies that are perceived as bullying and imperialist in the eyes of our global neighbors puts us in danger when we leave the country.

Your zealous tenacity to anti-abortion rhetoric leaves us in fear that abortion, which will never go away, please don’t fool yourself, will return to back alley institution that threatens the lives of the unfortunate women – and sometimes children – who find themselves pregnant without wishing to be so.

Your narrow minded application of the term “family values” to the desired exclusion of civil rights for our gay friends and neighbors makes us fear for not just them, but for the precedent this sets for denying rights to other classes of citizens.

Your profligate spending of our tax dollars on war to the detriment of social services, including those for our soldiers, makes us wonder what will happen to the poor who have no place to turn for assistance.

Your callous disregard for the environment, including your desire to release our treasured national parks and wilderness areas to exploitation, makes us ask what the glories of Yellowstone, Sequoia, Yosemite, and other precious areas of natural beauty will look like to future generations.

These are only a few of the things I’m crying about. You said in your acceptance speech that you will work to earn our trust. Understand that you do not have it now. You have not worked in the past to establish it. You have pushed us away with your war-mongering, your untrammeled spending, your restriction of civil rights, your disregard for the things we hold valuable. Right now, you’re the president that made me cry. You might start by reassuring me that the things I hold dear, my rights and my American sense of pride, are not at risk on your watch.

I am a patriot. I worked long and hard to see you defeated and for that work, I received no compensation. I did it because I did not trust you to hold the nation’s honor for me. I dare you to prove me wrong. I dare you to give me cause to stop crying and to calm my anger. I dare you to give me reason raise my head and be proud again.

PM, Seattle WA

___________________

Hey Nonfamousi: Write to the President, okay? (president(at)whitehouse.gov) And send a copy to your local paper, too.

And no, I’m bloody well not done

I want to keep the category “Help is on the way” around, because it might be delayed, but I’m not ready to give up on the idea that it will get here.

I had a few more thoughts I wanted to share that have come up as a result of this election.

First of all, you can count on me not to take my vote for granted ever again. I will be there first thing in the morning every election day until I die. And I’m going to devote at least some time to pestering friends, neighbors, coworkers, or just more people in Tukwila to do the same.

I will not support this president, but I AM a patriot, and I am not going to stand for him insinuating (much less stating) that criticism of his reckless policies is anything but patriotic. I care, probably more than I ever have before, what happens to this country, and I want to make this place better.

I also will not stand for the right of this country co-opting the notion of values. How many times last night did we hear the news outlets say that of those people who listed “values” as their top issue, Bush was their guy. I have values, deeply held ones that jibe very well with my Christian upbringing, and I am sick and tired of the right confusing bigotry and fearmongering with anything related to “values.”

So from now on, I want us on the left to support candidates who are strong on our values: who believe that all people are of equal value, that one’s gender, race, religion, country, and sexual orientation don’t make one iota of difference in how we should be valued; who believe that if God gave us this earth as our home, then we have a responsibility to take care of it and treat it with respect; who will remind us all that Jesus said the most important thing to remember was that whatever we do to the least of our brothers and sisters, we do to him; and who will not relent in their defense of OUR family.

Our offensive suffered a really crushing defeat yesterday, but bloody and limping, I’m willing to keep fighting. It might happen that one of these days, we need to admit defeat and get out before it’s too late. I haven’t yet ruled out that possibility, but I still think it’s a fight worth continuing.

Oh, and yeah, I know how hokey that all sounds. But I really do mean it.