This Happened.


So what the hell?

I voted in my first presidential election in 1976. Jimmy Carter. I was proud of my vote. He is still one of the most impressive humanitarians on the planet. I voted for him again in 1980. I didn’t like Ronald Reagan. I voted against him in ’84, I didn’t like his policies on women, single mothers in particular. Mondale wasn’t my idea of a good choice, just the better choice. I voted for Dukakis in ’88. George Bush was simply going to be Ronald Reagan-lite. Yeah, none of that for me, thank you. By the end of the 1980s most of my hope that I lived in a great nation and that my children would be ok had been vanquished. Thank you, my fellow Americans. But I never considered secession because, well, that’s just crazy talk.

I liked Ross Perot; but I voted for Bill Clinton. He impressed me. Twice. During his second term, the Republicans made me ill with the impeachment proceedings. This was my country. This was embarrassing. If Hilary doesn’t care, why should I? It was a witch-hunt – let’s not get anything done because we’re sore losers. And still, Bill eliminated the deficit. Bill turned our country around. He gave hope to people. He gave me hope.

In 2000, I voted for Al Gore – you know the man who won the popular vote. The man who should have been president. During George W’s presidency, I started thinking, Reagan hadn’t been so bad… And I wasn’t alone in that. The lies that led us to war. The deregulation that took us into recession – to the verge of depression. During Mr. Bush’s first term we went from a nation that the entire world wanted to support (after 9/11) to the most hated, least respected nation on the planet. And by the way, climate change is a thing, it’s real, and it’s now. Ask any New Yorker. As inconvenient as that truth is, it is a truth. Thank you, Mr. Gore.

I will forever wonder what if…

I know I have many readers who disagree with me politically. Many neighbors, friends. But this is the United States of America and I get to have my opinion. It’s well-researched, based in fact. Not always based on my own selfish views. It’s not the worlds according to Mel. It’s the United States that supports liberty and justice for all.

Liberty—to vote, to marry, to remain in control of my medical and reproductive rights. I am at liberty to express my opinions, to point out lies and misinformation without fear of recrimination.

And Justice – god, justice! We need some of that! For Denise Helms. Ann Coulter. Ted Nugent, Rush Limbaugh, Glen Beck. I could go on, but this is the United States! The place where diversity thrives. After elections, we are supposed to, as Rachel Maddow suggests, get on with the work of the government – our government – send the best of the best to Washington and hammer out our differences, compromise…

That’s what we do.

But this week there are rumors and news articles of states petitioning to secede. Really?

Really?

I looked at the states petitioning the president – my president – our president. And for the most part, they are the bottom feeders, that 47% about whom we have heard so much in recent months.

Seven of the top ten poorest states want to secede (States percentage living below poverty level #1 Mississippi (21.6),  #2 Louisiana (19.4), #5 Arkansas (17.9),  #7 Kentucky (17.4), #8 Texas (16.6), #9 Alabama (16.1), #10 South Carolina (15.7). Most of the others round out the top 20.). The graphic here shows the least educated in our nation live in states wanting to secede. Many of these states are also on the list for “most federal money spent per capita.”

Part of me says, let ‘em go! See how long they last without FEMA, The Department of Education, Social Security… Yeah. Let ‘em go! Because the patriotism they espouse isn’t real. Real American patriots would be calling their congressmen. They would be working to make a difference, despite this loss. They would be working now to get out the vote for the next election. Real American patriots would never consider secession.

Never.

During the Bush years, it made me angry when I stated my opinions about the war in Iraq, about trickle down economics, the state of education in our country and I was called a traitor. I was a traitor for saying the Patriot Act was unconstitutional or NCLB was bad law (If you don’t know what these laws are, or how they impact your life, Google them. It’s important stuff). I didn’t leave. I never considered leaving. I turned my attention to changing things; to making it better for my children. As an American patriot, that is my responsibility.

So, Texas, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, Mississippi, et al—go on! Go! Because you don’t know what it means to be an American anyway. Take Arizona with you!

Am I angry? Hell yes, I’m angry! Seventeen states are acting like spoiled whiney six year olds. Seventeen. You didn’t get your way? Ok. Deal with it! The most amazing thing about our president is that despite all the whining, name-calling, bullying, blocking votes in congress, refusing to bring votes to the floor, gerrymandering, and blind adherence to faulty information he’s still willing to listen. He’s still willing to compromise. So, from where I’m sitting, it looks like the ball is in your court…

You can take it and go home, or you can step to the plate and bat.

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7 thoughts on “This Happened.

  1. Mel,
    Can’t say I was thrilled by the results last week nor do I agree with all of your thoughts but by goodness thank heaven we have the right to disagree. And I will support the President, OUR President. I was not aware that 17 states wanted to seceed. Maybe I live too far into the Blue States to have that news be spread. I’d say let ’em go too, but they do provide some mighty good College Football!

    My mother would have been thrilled to hear you say those things about Bush Jr.

    Ed

  2. Mel,

    I disagree with many of your closely held beliefs, but I strongly agree you have a right to them, and a right to express them. I personally see the past election in a different light with consequences we are already seeing in the jobs sector. The lay offs coming are not based in racism or hate, just plane old math. The kind of math not done, or ignored by, those who passed Obamacare. I do believe in compromise, but not in compromising your common sense. The math does not work for small businesses and so it will not work for the country, no matter how good this law makes liberals feel. The fine for no insurance is less than the cost of paying the fine, and the people the law is supposed to help, the middle class, will be the losers in this one. Most of them can not even afford their part even if the employer does his/her part.
    Succession is just another dumb saying that people who don’t know what they’re talking about use, like “we’ll have to pass the bill to see what’s in it” Stupid people everywhere, even in leadership in Congress.I think we’re going to get it in the long run, but like Ed, I will support President Obama until I disagree with him. Then I will argue the point, but never secede from the Union.

    • As I said, and have said many times, I have friends who are conservative — there needs to be a new word for the thinking conservative, for those willing to look at the issues and try to work through it all for a stronger United States. I am proud to call some of them friends :).

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  4. That reminds me of the great Quebec referendum of 1980 and again in 1995. My at-the-time mother-in-law was living there and wondering if she’ll have to start paying for flights to the rest of Canada with Quebec dollars. Scary times. Hope it doesn’t get crazy there. Might be the path towards that recession followed by depression people keep predicting.

  5. Reminds me of what Rev. Coffin said about patriotism: ““There are three kinds of patriots, two bad, one good. The bad are the uncritical lovers and the loveless critics. Good patriots carry on a lover’s quarrel with their country…”

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