Thursday, April 17, 2008

Who will be the Last Democrat Standing?

I hope this will be the last debate between these two because I'm way past ready to see who the last Democrat standing will be. I do have to say, I didn't expect Rev. Wright and the "bitters" right out of the gate, though I did expect it at some point seeing as ABC was the network that first released the Rev. Wright clips. I don't think Sen. Obama was expecting it either - at least not like that. I saw the mirror crack a few times. First, when Gibson asked him about the "bitters," though it gave him an opportunity to clean it up a bit. And again, as he stuck to his story about not ever hearing those particular, now-famous soundbites. But when it was Sen. Clinton's turn to comment on both of those topics, his jaw was so tight I thought I heard his teeth grinding. He "misspoke," saying first, he'd disowned him. But when Stephanopoulos pounced, saying, "Disowned him?" - he immediately corrected and said he'd disowned "his comments" not him. It was evident he was flustered, his irritation palpable. He doesn't wear irritation very well. Neither do I. But then again, I'm not running for president. As I've said before, I'm not an Obama supporter, but I felt a little for him tonight given the circumstances. He tried to find the middle ground between, tearing each other to shreds and smarmy, not lobbing nearly as many grenades at Sen. Clinton as she did at him on the media-labeled, "character" issues. It was a smart move considering he was vulnerable, having just laid Rev. Wright's comments to rest and still smarting from the "bitters." It didn't work very well though. The questions were nothing new, particularly in light of a lot of other, more substantive issues that could have been raised. Their conversations on issues to date have been limited, pretty much to the same few. The only difference tonight though, was on the answers given on a question that's been asked before - whether each thought the other was electable. They both answered yes, which is a departure, particularly for Senator Clinton. Through that uncomfortable first 45 - 50 minutes, a strange thing happened. I heard myself saying, "Leave that shit alone Hill, he's not bothering you." My mother hen kicked in! For a fleeting moment I saw, as I've seen on a couple occasions, this little bi-racial boy trying real hard to find a place to fit in and I felt the need to protect him. It's a personal connection I feel, unrelated in any way to this race. Since I don't do polls, I believe only Tuesday will tell whether this debate hurt Sen. Obama as much as his die hard supporters currently think. But he did a good job trying to put his views out there without losing total control. For a very long time in this country, that line is one lots of Blacks have felt an absolute necessity to walk in order to really succeed - can't be viewed as the Angry Black Man/Woman. It's a road I too thought was important - when I was younger. But over time, I found that wasn't my truth because there's a lot in this life about which to be mad as hell. I don't particularly care anymore how I am viewed in that regard and as Robert Frost said in these few lines of the last stanza of his "Road Not Taken":
"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
It's an empowering thing that I wish the senator from Illinois would consider. But I know he won't. Despite all of his accomplishments, he needs this ultimate validation, not just from this country, but the world.


The First Domino said...

My Response:

If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,

Or being hated, don't give way to hating, And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master; If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to broken, And stoop and build 'em up with wornout tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you Except the Will which says to them: 'Hold on!'

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you, If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute With sixty seconds' worth of distance run -

Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, And - which is more -you'll be a Man my son!

Rudyard Kipling

Deb said...

the first domino...Welcome back! I love this poem! My father gave it to my brother and I upon graduation from high school.

There are parts of it though on which I think the senator either is, or still needs to work.

The First Domino said...

There are parts of it though on which I think the senator either is, or still needs to work.

There are also parts that I need to hold dear and emulate.

Becoming a "man" can take a long, long time.

Deb said...

the first domino...
"There are also parts that I need to hold dear and emulate.

Becoming a "man" can take a long, long time."

I'm sure, which is the reason I gave it to my sons upon their graduation. Trust me you don't have to tell me about that "long time." :-)

P.S. In my haste to answer, I left out a few words with regard to the senator "either is working on,..."

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