In 2008, after years of exhausting partisanship, Barack Obama captured much of the nation, including me, with a vision of a country of shared values, whose commonality was deeper than its differences. A beautiful vision. Inspiring.
We need to recognize that in 2020.
It could have been true, but that would have needed everyone to show up to prove the truth of it.
It was rejected by conservatives—immediately, vigorously, angrily, consistently, enduringly.
They embraced white supremacy and facism instead.
We have to face that truth in 2020.
When I assumed all Americans wanted good for all people, despite differences, the country had a thirst for political figures that would bring unity. I did.
Now that assumption has been proved false, so the thirst is for figures who will fight those who want harm for most people.
Bipartisanship. Unity. Compromise. These are the symptoms of health, not the causes.
But unity with sickness doesn’t bring health.
We need to recognize that truth in 2020.
If we want to win in 2020, we need to recognize that Donald Trump represents the true revealed stautus quo of America, and recognize how many people are threatened and harassed, menaced and harmed by that status quo.
They’ll show up for a fighter.
Not for a “unifier.”
Blandishments toward unity, compromise, incrementalism, bipartisanship, these are buzzwords of the status quo.
They now only indicate that those using them don’t yet feel attacked by the status quo.
When those who do feel so attacked hear them, they despair.
2008 was a beautiful dream. I wish it had been true. But we now have the proof otherwise.
We have to offer water for today’s thirst, not yesterday’s.
2020 needs a fight. We didn’t seek it, but we’d better meet it.
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