I want you to know I’ve been well, and it appears you’re trying to make something happen for yourselves. I’m glad you understand that things aren’t turning out the way we all wanted this past year…2017 was a weird and wild trip through the adage “reality is stranger than fiction”. I’ve tried to stay out of it. After all, I sympathize with you, but I’m not really one of you. I’m a deplorable of the left—an independent not beholden to platforms, platitudes, or political anointment. I don’t owe you my vote, you may recall me telling you…repeatedly. I’m willing to work with you and just as willing to work against you, if I you aren’t in the neighborhood of my goals.
You see, my sympathies are not in your platform, I don’t care about red, blue, or purple seats. Rather, I recognize the dangerous values and situations your current rhetoric is illustrating: anti-intellectualism, anti-education, the so-called alt-right’s emboldened veiled and unveiled racism, sexism, classism, societal inequality, and the failure of government to meet our American ideals in a modern and general way. Of course, these aren’t always your issues, but right now, out of power in three branches of the government, I am sympathetic to your message.
Anyway, I hope you have your eyes on the prize right now, because 2016 was a real doozy for you guys. Now it’s 2018 which means two big things:
1) You’ve got mid-term elections to win
2) The 2020 race is ramping up
I’m not telling you anything you don’t know, but I’m writing to tell you that you’re already losing me.
After the 2016 election you were quick to tell me, a Third Party voter that I should have put on my big boy pants and rallied with you behind Hillary Clinton, the anointed one. It was, after all, her time. Her loss was not because of her lazy campaigning, your internally corrupt sabotage of Bernie Sanders, or her too-early victory laps but rather because I refused to vote for a lesser evil and instead chose to find a greater good to vote for. And Third Party voters like myself responded, and continue to respond, that if you present us with a greater good rather than a lesser evil we may be inclined to walk with you, side-by-side though not hand-in-hand…and if you don’t you can kick rocks. That stands true today as ever.
We agree the Mr. Trump is a bad idea, so give us an alternative. I certainly hear you in that he’s unqualified, ill-tempered, bereft of depth, and characteristically unpresidential. If his Presidency has done anything it’s proven that wealth and business alone don’t a leader or chief executive make. Status as a billionaire, television star is not a strong enough resume for President is an entertaining, even resonate, persona. Certainly not when that person is lewd, self-centered, and incorrigible.
But let’s all be consistent—that translates to people with dignity and with whom we agree as well. The President’s inarticulate communication and sophomoric actions should not be the only qualities we look to oust from the White House. America needs leadership, not shepherding, entertaining, or appeasement. A path forward is defined by vision not talking points.
Let me be direct: this isn’t about just Oprah Winfrey. Oprah is indeed a no last-name needed, billionaire, TV Star, just like The Donald, but it isn’t just her. Oprah is only the latest celebrity alternative paraded out to the public. While the arguments about Trump’s qualifications mirror hers, that equally applies to Mark Cuban or Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Forget the laughably frightening suggestions of a Kanye West or Waka Flocka Flame run for The White House. Serious or not, it seems all it takes to be considered for the Presidency is to be rich and famous and tilt at he windmill on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. No matter how entertaining the idea of President The Rock is, this is again, not about being the most electrifying, high flying, flag raising, eye brow raising candidate. It’s about being led and convinced of the road ahead with confidence, conviction, purpose, and reason.
I, and I’m sure many independents like me, would vote for a viable person with a vision of progress towards a greater, more equitable republic where freedom and prosperity ring in symphony with justice and honesty. This is not something you get from eloquent celebrity nor from an anti-candidate. While it’s not impossible for a celebrity to have these qualities, the rally behind one has ever only been about a short cut to name recognition. For you, the Democrats to offer one now would not uplift that person to be the best candidate, but rather an anti-Trump.
An anti-Trump is no less confidence inspiring than a closet monster offered to a scared child to assuage their fear of the monster under the bed. The leadership we want, is the light shining under the bed, dispelling the fear of the monster.
And while you’re at it sweep out from under the bed and clean out the closet—reform yourselves and be rid of your super delegates and your pay to play rise to the top political system. Don’t tell the people what they want and blame them for turning on you…ask them what they want and serve them. Get your house in order if you want me to help you win any houses—White, Representative, or otherwise.
This isn’t a question of any celebrity’s charity or conviction to political ideas—Oprah, The Rock, or otherwise. It’s about finding the right person.The right person isn’t a short cut, or a brand name, or a personal narrative. It’s a leader, willing to take charge, go forward, to speak truth to power and bring power to truth. It’s about being capable and willing to embody what our ideals are: freedom, equality, equity, justice, and prosperity. And not wish those ideals to materialize but will it and build it.
That’s not a lesser evil. It’s a greater good. And if you can’t find one…I will. Probably not with you. Get it together.