It's way too hot this weekend to be walking around the lake, maybe too hot to go to the gym to swim. So I saw Ghostbusters yesterday--it was a fun piece of fluff. Seeing a group of women working together in a zany way without being objectified was much more important than it felt to me while viewing it. The feeling was an "of course, no big deal that women are people." The big deal was the hunger I felt all these years for the depictions that should have been there all along. Once it’s set right, it’s just normal and to be taken for granted.
This is why it's hard for leftists, liberals, and progressives to generate enthusiasm. It's hard to celebrate something that should be taken for granted because it is so obviously the right way things should go according to values based on the notion of equality. That is the challenge--it only becomes visceral in comparison to the past--it's a two step process to re-ignite the enthusiasm that got burned up getting to that point. It involves reflection, not just immediate feeling.
Backlash is fueled by the visceral excitement of tearing down, while projecting the feeling of fighting back. It generates its own enthusiasm--we have our work cut out for us in pushing back against it.
I hope the Dem's can put on an inspiring convention this week. I hope it is made clear how much more progressive Sanders has made HRC’s platform—that isn’t lost with the choice of a more moderate VP—and one of the only choices whom removing from Congress would not lose a seat to the Republicans; Virginia has a Democratic governor who will designate a Democratic replacement. And it’s not lost by the revealing of the bullshit the party partisans plotting against Sanders had to say, as if we didn't know this already. Like Obama, the HRC/Kaine ticket is still to the left of where Bill Clinton and Gore stood—not a lot, but I’ll take it—it’s progress I am happy to get after years of Reagan and Bushes and in the scary face of what the Republicans are fielding now. Throwing into the mix the first woman president is not a consolation prize and not a Thatcher/May pyrrhic non-victory—HRC is far better than them and on the moderate left and will continue the hard won progress Obama achieved, more so if we can move the court and Congress left, which, unfortunately, would have been harder to achieve if she removed Warren from the senate to be her VP.
Untrustworthiness is a misogynist meme, maybe the most ancient woman hating meme, being used against HRC to dampen our enthusiasm for her. “Lock her up” shares the cadence of “Burn the witch.” It’s just as violent rhetoric, and as repellent and dishonest as appropriating Michelle Obama’s words and saying it is no big deal, while bashing everything she stands for. Notice the Republicans made sure women were responsible for that oh so unimportant lie they perpetuated--you can't accuse Melania or her speechwriter of plagiarizing, as they were set up to do, without furthering the "women lie" meme. I don't know if they were clever enough to stick them with it deliberately, but they are clever enough to make hay with its results.
The thing that HRC can’t say about the email issue is that we have a long way to go to making government email secure because no one can keep up with the hacking of the changing technology at this time and government systems are large and, therefore, harder to secure. Look at the big OPM breach of personal data this last year. In light of this, and with security on the internet being an ongoing problem for everyone everywhere piecing it together as best we can, the email issue is such a non-issue. And I would not be surprised if HRC’s private server was more secure than the government servers could be made at the time and kept vital information more secure. However, she can’t say this without giving the Republicans more fuel to put down government, the only imperfect instrument we have to defend us against corporations (such as arms manufacturers) through regulation and to put our money to use for services to benefit everyone, including those corporations, but only if we vote.
It's still up to each of us to inspire ourselves and push forward and believe we deserve a better government than the sad vision the Republicans presented last week. We must do this. Go Democrats for a great week!
Also posted at http://lavendertook.dreamwidth.org/2013