For My Friends Who Love Bernie

My Republicans friends…I love you but this post is not for you.  It’s for us left-leaning Democrats and Independents.  See you next post, okay?

 

My friends who love Bernie…it should be no secret that I am a Hillary supporter. I know that you have your ideas about Hillary but please hear me out. I don’t want to discuss what she has or hasn’t done. I don’t want to discuss the polls about Bernie vs you-know-who.  I especially don’t  want to discuss all the endless rhetoric and speculation about the Clintons and their private and public life.  What I do want to tell you is why this election is so important to me.

 

It’s important to me for two reasons.  One has to do with my personal journey as a woman.  The other has to do with my lifelong fascination with the era of the 1940s and World War II.

 

It was a different world when I went out into the workforce in the 1980s.  Women in leadership positions were seen as cold heartless bitches…like the Sigourney Weaver role in Working Girl. Think about the title of that movie….back then the term GIRL was used to demean women.  Would you say that girl ran for Congress?  That girl was head of her own company?  That girl won the Nobel prize? But isn’t a girl a female in her teens or younger?  Sadly, that term was used towards grown women.  Today we are used to seeing women in positions of power…or at least many more than used to be.  Back then it was a novelty.  I went to work as a store manager for a large retail company that had 337 stores in 13 states.  Of those 337 store managers, approximately 30 of us were women, and in every store I managed, I was the very first woman who had ever managed the store. I had customers ask to speak to the manager, even after I said I was the manager. My district manager told me that the regional manager said in a meeting that women weren’t  qualified to run stores. He didn’t think we could cut it.  As a woman I had to work twice as hard as my fellow male managers to prove myself. I was very lucky in that over the years I worked there I had two district managers both who believed in me and supported me.  I heard horror stories from other districts about how the female managers were treated. And some of the other store managers were very condescending towards females.  It was a very tough road.

 

Over the years many times I have been treated like I was less than a man, like I didn’t have as much worth because I was a woman.  I am a feminist, plain and simple.  Being a feminist means that I believe that women are equal to men.  Not better, equal. That we should be treated the same.  It’s a really simple concept that can be so twisted and misconstrued by people. When I opened up my shop 12 years ago, there were people who treated it like a hobby, because in their minds, a woman who opens up a shop is just “playing store”.  Unlike a man who starts his own business.  Never mind that I have a business degree in Marketing and have over 35 years of retail experience, including a stint as a regional manager responsible for 33 stores!  Even today I had a customer walk through my shop and ask me if the items in my shop were my own collection and how long did it take me to accumulate them!  Because they evidently couldn’t wrap their brain around the idea that a woman could have a professional curated vintage shop, that’s been going strong for 12 years. And this is 2016!  There are still plenty of people that have a hard time valuing a strong independent woman. We still have a long way to go.The fact remains that men run things, with a few exceptions.

 

Did you know that Hillary Clinton was voted the most admired woman in the world for the past 20 years?  That’s right…from 1995 to 2015.  The most admired woman.  In the world!!!  That’s worth three exclamation points, at least.  Gallup Poll.  Look it up.  I am thrilled that Hillary is the Democratic nominee.  She’s strong, capable, tough as nails, supremely intelligent, pragmatic, deep-thinking, diplomatic, and has an amazing network of capable people around her that she has built up over the years.  I am equally thrilled that it’s FINALLY A WOMAN. Yes, I said it.  I want a woman president!  Isn’t it about time?  This past week has been very emotional for me, as I watched her become the nominee.  This is a big deal for me.  A really big deal.  And I am asking you, my Bernie friends, to understand that and give me the opportunity to be proud to be a woman who has fought so hard over the years to finally get to this point.

 

I know where you are at.  I know that you are profoundly disappointed that Bernie won’t be the nominee or our next president.  I have felt your pain.  I feel sorry that you have to go through this. Please be happy for me…at least a little.  That’s all I ask.

 

As for my 2nd point……I have studied at length World War II.  I know a lot about Hitler and authoritarianism.  Imagine you were a German citizen back in 1932 and you didn’t especially like Hindenberg and you couldn’t bear to vote for him because of your feelings. Hitler’s running too, and while he and his followers have already displayed arrogance, authoritarian leanings, brute strength, and beatings of bystanders at rallies…you decide to vote for him.  Or you decide to not vote at all or vote for a third candidate with no chance of winning, which is a vote for him.  After all, what’s the worst that could happen?

 

Do I have to point out what’s the worst that could happen if He-who-shall-not-be-named becomes president?  Do I really have to?  You are smart, truly you are…all my friends are intelligent.  I know you know this.  You know what will happen.  And if you truly love Bernie and his beautiful message, you couldn’t possibly want the idiot T to be our next president. You can choose to not vote for Hillary…that’s entirely up to you. Bernie has pledged to do everything in his power to make sure idiot T doesn’t become president…because that’s the kind of man Bernie Sanders is.  You can choose to do your part in making sure T doesn’t become president.  Or you can choose not to….but either way I will still love you.  But either way, just remember…talk is cheap. Actions speak.

thanks for listening,

 

Lynette

 

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5 Responses to For My Friends Who Love Bernie

  1. CalicoJack says:

    My mother divorced in 1968. She worked federal civil service as a clerical worker, i.e. secretary. She was denied a credit card because my father couldn’t be found to co-sign for it even though they were divorced. One of her bosses told her that he wouldn’t recommend her for a promotion because it would be taking a job from a man who was head of a family even though he knew she was divorced and head of her family. I went without a winter coat for two years. We went without meals. Life was hard. And it was made harder by the patriarchy.

    I am thrilled Hillary Clinton is the nominee. I will be even more thrilled with she is president. She is the most qualified person to be president in the history of this nation. The Republican smear campaign against the Clintons has been so effective that even Democrats believe it.

    I keep thinking that things can’t get any worse that we are at a turning point. I thought that when W was elected. I thought that when W was re-elected. I thought that when Obama was elected. I thought that when he was re-elected. I don’t think that any more — although a little part of me remains optimistic.

    Hillary’s nomination and election — knock on wood — could be a turning point for our nation and world. Let’s hope that it is.

    • Lynette says:

      Thank you for your wonderful profound comment. I myself have days where I despair over what will happen in the world in the next 20 years. I too look for turning points. I too have a small part of me that remains optimistic..it’s the feisty little girl inside me. I hate that I can’t be more openly joyful that Hillary is the nominee. I want to throw a party and serve all blue food and drinks…I want to plaster a Hillary bumpersticker on my car or three, I want to shout to the world, yes yes YES!! But I try to stay in a drama free world, as humanly possible these days and I just don’t need the aggravation from the Bernies or the Trumpies. Does that make me a coward? It might. At this point I don’t care. I donate to Hillary as much as I can and I did some phone banking for her in the primaries, which for me was a big deal because I am inherently a shy person at heart, and calling up strangers to talk about Hillary was scary and exciting and just plain hard work, especially since I got hung up on and worse at times. I plan to do more, I plan to do my part as best I can. It’s all we can do, isn’t it…the best we can. Thanks again.

      • CalicoJack says:

        Sometimes our lives are so filled with hassles that we don’t need to add another. Not putting a bumper sticker on your car to avoid the inevitable rudeness that it will attract is not cowardly, it wisdom and discretion, which as we know is the better part of valor.

        I’m just so grateful that you are putting yourself out there through volunteering and writing about it here. It is inspiring and a reminder that we should all look for ways to contribute both big and small.

        Jack

  2. I am completely with you on everything you covered in this piece. Fair disclosure: I was initially a Bernie fan, just for his sheer exuberance to buck the system (which, admittedly, is considerably broken) but his luster dimmed when it became clear that he didn’t have a concrete plan. How is he going to finance all the wonderful-sounding things that he trumpets? It’s desirable, but it’s not feasible, because “the system” is so entrenched in our society. For solid and real advancements, you have to change the system from within, and the only folks who can change things are people who are in that system, people who have the savvy and experience, the “know how” to get things done.

    Which, of course, leads us to Hillary. She is the most qualified candidate out there, whether blue, red, green, or tea-colored. She does annoy me from time to time with certain decisions, choices that I don’t support, but I also realize that politics is a massive game, and a strategy of compromise has to be part of the game-play. (Something most Republicans have long since forgotten.) Hillary is a master player, and any quibbles I might have pale in comparison to the master envisioning the best way to get things done.

    Finally, as Jack as mentioned above, I truly respect the efforts you have made in support of Hillary, manning phone banks and such. I’m on the “checkbook” side of things, giving money whenever I can. And my blogs are full of rants about the cretins on The Right. I’m just not comfortable taking that extra step and dealing with folks on the phone, partially because of my anxiety disorder but mostly because it’s hard for me to remain neutral when dealing with ignorant people. In any case, thank you for what you’ve one. And, hopefully, we’ll see history made this November…

    • Lynette says:

      Thank you Brian. I totally understand your initial exuberance over Bernie…I saw that with many of my friends and I STILL have friends who are on the Bernie boat and unfortunately believe a lot of the nonsense that has been said and written about Hillary. I know she isn’t perfect and I know she has flaws, but I believe with all my heart that she will be a great president, and that’s all that matters in the end to me.

      As for the phone banking, thanks for your praise, I appreciate it and Jacks’ too..but this is so important to me that I felt compelled to do something!!! I was asked if I wanted to volunteer and my two options were phone banking or door to door. I chose phone banking as the lesser of two evils and I do think the work so many of us did will help with the general election…because it is part of gathering valuable information to be put to good use. So even the rude people and hang=ups are actually helpful, as it means we marked those people as DO NOT CALL and that’s less work for future phone bankers.

      Did you check out CalicoJack’s blog? He does some very interesting political posts too.

      And yes, hopefully we see history made this November….the RIGHT kind of history. 🙂

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