Monday, July 04, 2005



Happy America Day you all.

I marched in my first Independence Day parade today, in the lovely suburb of Oakbrook Terrace, an interesting town with a healthy mix of blue & white collar folks, and many immigrant families. I believe my contingent, for Christine Cegelis, was the only political group in the parade, so hopefully it will do great things for her visibility in that town.

I got to thinking about a couple of things while walking. One: it's gratifying to engage in some nationalistic boosterism in a context outside of sports, particularly when it's done in conjunction with supporting a candidate who has a vision of a better country and great ideas of how to achieve that. It was super great to be walking with all the other Cegelis folks in what's generally considered GOP country. That political party seems intent on undermining our democracy and our Constitution, whether through the Flag Amendment, the Federal Marriage Amendment, the attack on the institution of the judiciary, the unprecedented secrecy of the administration and the disinformation surrounding the war in Iraq, and the disregard for the one-person, one-vote standard. And, of course, they're doing it in the name of the very flag that symbolizes something quite foreign to them - real freedom, real sacrifice, real progress.

Two: It is absolutely essential that the Democratic party learn how to communicate better with rural and suburban white working and middle classes males. We must do that without compromising on the red-meat social issues of the radical right. And while investing in an infrastructure is key to that (it works for the GOP, it works for Hezbollah...) it's also important that we do it one-on-one, on a grassroots level. So my challenge to you: make it your mission, Evangelist-like, to sway one Red to a Blue in the coming year. Create a 12-month plan, even let 'em know you're doing it. And then marshal all your logic, evidence, experience, and love for this country to make that a reality.

And if you don't know any reds, go out and meet them NOW! (On a related note, fuck the Chicago Reader for starting their otherwise solid article about a divinity professor who is providing crucial rebuttals to the execrable Left Behind books with this sentence:
Most likely nobody you know has read one, but more than 50 million books in the Left Behind series have sold in the past decade.

Umm, Todd Dills? The correct sentence would be, "You might not know this, but someone you know has read at least one of the Left Behind books." And, as one of the people who has read several of the books, I can tell you that they are a frightening glimpse into the current state of fundamentalist Republicanism, and everybody should read them, if only to start to understand how far we have to go, and at least partly, how to get there. Ass.

Update: If you want to know more about the Left Behind series and why it's so bad (and not just dangerous), please PLEASE check out "Left Behind Fridays" only at Slacktivist

A good read. Perhaps a bit harsh on Todd Dills, he wrote a good article. I now am interested in reading Rossing's book and checking out the Left Behind series.
Umm...I couldn't imagine reading the series. Maybe because as a child I had already heard most of the concepts in the book preached to me from a pulpit. A lot of those scary conservatives are in my family, and the stuff they spout as being original and enlightened in the book sounds a lot like a very tired retread of Sunday School 1985.
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