"Will you put on the movie already?" I asked Lisa.
"No, I want to watch the election results," she said.
"Why? You can go on the internet and get county-by-county votes. Obama's got Ohio he's gonna win, put on the movie."
"Wait," she said.
And so I was forced to watch California slide, inevitably, into the blue and Obama being declared President. I suffered through local coverage of the Obama celebrations, with prim and proper reporters covering the downtown gala while the token black reporter was sent to cover an inner-city party, which to me reeks more of racism than a host of perceived slights.
I hate the result but I applaud the election as a monumental step for African-Americans, one that may help bury the lingering sins of the past. Still, it's sad that after all these years we could put a minority into office before a female even landed a nomination. The world changes, and it changes not at all.
"You're taking this well," Lisa said. "You must not be that upset."
"I've lost elections before," I said. 'Tis true - I was a Dem until '91, switching parties just in time to lose two more times.
Others were less practiced at the art. I took phone calls from friends in different parts of the country. One urged me to be 'careful' of pro-Obama violence on the way to work, which I told him was silly, while another joked of leaving the country and bemoaned the passing of the republic. Socialist was AWOL, no doubt busy passing out cigars 'redistributed' from the Bourgeois tobacco shop ;)
We then watched McCain's concession speech. I was very moved and finished watching it 100% convinced that the better man, if not the better candidate, had gone home vanquished. Has there ever been a more sincere and eloquent concession?
"Why didn't he speak like that during the campaign?," Lisa, who was never a fan of the man, said. "He'd have had a chance. I like him more than I ever did before."
I didn't/couldn't watch Obama take the stage, and so at that point we turned on the ever-present HGTV.
Watching the election results, local, state, and federal, was like watching Little Bighorn while wearing a Calvary uniform. Without question the Democrats have a reactionary mandate from America and can - or should be able to - push their leftist agenda through with ease.
While it's like saying the silver lining of dying from a stroke is that you don't have to worry about drowning, I'm glad the GOP is completely out of the loop, rather than just a visible but powerless minority. Whatever happens, good or bad, it will fall squarely on the Democrats, and should provide an equally reactionary turnabout down the road.
Now I'm going to go on record and say that I'll support the office of the President and hope for the best. I don't want to see him fail outright at the very least on foreign policy, as that would mean this nation has failed. Bush's opponents never understood that concept, as part of their makeup seems to be an inherent belief that America's sins will always outweigh her greatness; therefore seeing us fail was not a concern if it meant a Republican could go down in the process.
I won't stoop to the insulting, childish, and frankly ignorant commentary that the left has used to describe the Presidency in the last eight years. I promise you that.
But I'm going to lay something on the table. I think all these calls for 'unity' and 'let's put it behind us' are hypocritical bunk. It is akin to bringing eggs and rotten tomatoes to a play and bombarding the cast from before the lights go down until after the curtain falls, then taking the stage yourself and calling anyone with food in their hands a racist and an extremist.
Democrats spent eight years sowing seeds of hate and discord, and there will be plenty of people who are looking for payback over the next four years. The harvest may not be pretty, and they have no one to blame but themselves.
* * * *
I'd also like to thank the voters of Milwaukee for shooting themselves in their pocketbook by passing the Sick Leave referendum by a two-thirds majority. Never doubt a voter's ability to put aside reason if it means putting someone else's money in their wallet.
Someone needs to step up and rescue this city from itself. Where's a little 'hope/change/hope/change' when you need it?