Wednesday, July 13, 2005

why I recoil at horsetrading...

here's the thing: an ineffectual Democratic Party that can't reach out to people and draw them in with honesty and joy, that can't use modern tools to fight against right wing extremism, that treats politics like a game of cards when liars are playing speed chess: this is a Democratic Party that can't stop tragedies like this:

Cindy Sheehan, Gold Star Mothers for Peace
image: Cindy Sheehan points to a picture of her son, Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, while visiting members of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., June 15, 2005. Sheehan's son, Army Specialist Casey Sheehan was killed in Iraq on April 4, 2004. REUTERS/Mannie Garcia

so, politics, to me, is not a game. For me, politics is a necessary part of making the American dream a reality - that we fulfill the promise that Rev. Martin Luther King Jr gave his life for.

When I see politics being played, and the scorecard being kept, and the petty triumphs of ego, and the vindictive secrecy and the rest of it, it reminds me why I hated politics for most of my life. But, it also reminds me that it doesn't have to be that way. Politics can be a higher endeavor, a way to lift eyes and hearts, to tell the truth of what government is supposed to be about and how the people own it. I think the Democratic Party is now being forced to do the hard work of finding a populism that it may not ever have envisioned, and making it work for that large group of people who, like me, were never interested in politics. That, IMO, is one of our key 'secret' weapons. To persuade everyone everywhere to be a full-on activist is a waste of time, because it's not likely to happen. But to ask everyone everywhere to do their little bit, in keeping with who they are, is realistic and doable. That's what I want to help the Democratic Party become. So we never again have to suffer preventable tragedies like this senseless, immoral war.