Thursday, July 29, 2004

Roll Call

 When the roll was called, a score of delegates refused to make it unanimous. They voted for Kucinich, though Kucinich himself pleaded with them to give in. They reminded him that they were all pledged to end this illegal war. That notion was erased from the platform and forbidden on stage, but whenever the ban was broken, the applause meter showed that it was the real view of the majority.

Kerry himself arrived with two boatloads of warriors to relive the glory of combat in Vietnam. Nominating him, Edwards said “John and I have this messge for Al Queda and the terrorists: You cannot run, you cannot hide, we will destroy you.  Guess who that sounds like -- is meant to sound like. In an Op-Ed in the Times today, Barbara Ehrenreich calls for a feminist machismo -- for the U.S. to challenge discrimination against women all over the world.

Which reminds us that we are far from having achieved gender equality here. The pundits went gushy over the line in the keynote address about there being only one America. Edwards repeated that there are two: the rich and the rest of us. Jesse Jackson reminded us that there are many Americas, in that rhyming patter that once rallied millions to the polls. Then Al Sharpton turned loose. To the argument that blacks need to offer some votes to the other side, he said their votes had been dipped in the blood of martyrs, and were not to be traded. Speaking of the five-to-four division on the Supreme Court, he said, if this crowd had controlled the court 50 years ago, Clarence Thomas would never have got to college. And after emancipation, slaves were promised 40 acres and a mule. They didn’t get that 40 acres, they didn’t get the mule, so he reckoned they’d have to ride this Democratic donkey for as far it would go.