Country first? Which one?

Man, was I wrong.  Picking Sarah Palin was NOT about trolling for women, it was about pandering to frightened white people.  It was about the wink-wink racism that appeals to those who are afraid of people of color and of losing their guns (and not necessarily in that order).

I was/am appalled by the meanness of her speech last night.  And the absolute obtuseness of the party-line-toeing Republicans about what it means to be anything other than white in America.  I’m white.  About as white as you can get.  But I also understand that there is not one America, not even two Americas.  Every person experiences the dream of America differently–and very often that experience is colored by that person’s race/gender/socio-economic status.  Some of us have bootstraps to pull ourselves up by.  Others need “community organizers” to help us get boots, first, straps next.

Palin was offered up as a counter not to Hillary, but to Michelle Obama, whose experience in America has to be as starkly different from Palin’s.  It was never difficult for me to hear Michelle Obama talk about being proud to be American in the context in which she said it.  It was never difficult for me to understand that my white, lower-middle-class upbringing is not the only “norm” in America.  And it has never been difficult for me to understand that one can love something/someone, and still not always be proud of it, but love it enough to coax it toward change for the better–and for all.

Perhaps there are two Americas, populated by two very distinct groups: those who are willing to attempt to understand what the world looks like from another set of eyes, and those who are not.

I’m desperately sad this morning.  I was so wrong about this pick.  And I think McCain/Palin can win with the same dirty, mean politics of the past eight years. 

And yes, I’m going to send my contribution to the Obama/Biden ticket today, because it is imperative that those of us who can envision justice from different sets of eyes prevail.  Now.


About TinaLBPorter

I write poetry and blog at And I'm thrilled to be writing with you.
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6 Responses to Country first? Which one?

  1. CeeJay says:

    “Perhaps there are two Americas, populated by two very distinct groups: those who are willing to attempt to understand what the world looks like from another set of eyes, and those who are not.”

    Great observation! We aren’t born with empathy and understanding for those we view as somehow- not like us. It has to be carefully taught to us by our parents and community, mostly by example, the same way children learn prejudice. I remember teaching my son that putting glue on the ants on our sidewalk to watch them struggle wasn’t a good form of recreation. “How would you like to be that ant, struggling to get free, scared for your life?, I asked.” Maybe I was a bit melodramatic because later when I had to call an exterminator for the bees that got into the house, he demanded that I explain the difference between the ants and the bees. The point is, empathetic people had people in their lives who ask them to look at the world from someone else’s point of view, even through the eyes of ants on the sidewalk.


  2. Chuck B. says:

    Well said momma, very well said.


  3. Lizard Eater says:

    Yup, I sent money last night, too. It hurts my heart that the McCain campaign has said, “Screw Unity! We want BLOOD!” Especially after Obama came out and not only said, “Palin’s family is off limits,” but even “sacrificed” his own mother in pointing out that she was pregnant at 18.

    But you know … okay. Now that Palin has gone over the top with meanness, Democrat’s gloves can come off.


  4. Joel Monka says:

    I’m missing something here- what did she say that was racist? It’s a weird kind of racist who has a mixed-race spouse.


  5. jacqueline says:

    Don’t be disheartened… we can win! It is too soon to be defeated!


  6. mskitty says:

    Wow, Momma, you have said it loud and clear. Thanks.


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