Promoted by Rosi.
It’s time we understand criticism isn’t condemnation. In high school, we’d write first drafts that would come back with red ink. We weren’t kicked out of our Lit or History classes. Instead, we’d correct our grammar and sharpen our content to produce a much better final draft. We’re evaluated at every stage of our lives and there are countless times we evaluate others. Just about every service we use comes with a “3 minute survey at the end of the call”. If we attend a convention we’re asked to evaluate everything from the workshops to the meals and are expected to be honest so that the convention organizers do better the next time.
So why is it we are faced with this very written and verbal rule that we can’t criticize Democrats? Are we afraid of growth? Are we afraid that democracy will end democracy? If we were to go to the store right now to buy moisturizer we would find at least 17 different brands and each of those brands would have at least 3 different choices. Who hasn’t spent 15 minutes in an aisle scrutinizing the labels to look over ingredients, wondering do I have dry skin or extra skin before almost getting a bottle to the cart before putting it back and reading 3 more labels before making a choice? Maybe. And we don’t have to live with that lotion for 4 years.
At this point we should be scrutinizing every candidate’s voting record, platform and soon their donor list. Health care is a mess. Infrastructure is crumbling. Sea levels are rising. The Midwest is in the midst of a month long flood all while battling corporate farm takeovers. Black women are dying at extremely disportionate rates during childbirth than white women who are also dying at disportionate rates compared to the rest of the world. Indigenous women are going missing at an alarming rate. College grads can’t afford to buy homes or can’t qualify for mortgages because their debt is already sky high. We have more incarcerated individuals than any other country- and in for profit prisons. The Secretary of Education thinks class sizes should be bigger and that’s not even the worst thing happening to our children’s schools. There’s segregation, budgets are getting cut, teachers cannot afford to live. Families are being separated at the border, ecause of racist policies,because of war, because of gun violence, because of the overdose epidemic and because we criminalize poverty and mental illness. The to do list makes our to do lists look cute- and our to do lists are not cute.
Should we support candidates? Of course. But we support them by taking out the red pens. We support them by staying on for the 3 minute survey and being honest about their records and platforms so that they get better. Democracy doesn’t work if we just throw all the lotion in the cart, proceed to check out and ask everyone else in line which lotion is the most purchasable. The debates begin in just a few short months. Don’t we want candidates up on stage who demonstrate they’ve had actual conversations with actual people AND that they have listened to solutions these actual people want to see concerning issues that impact our daily lives. Don’t we want substance and not just a field of candidates who haven’t been challenged so they just stand there like they were born for this. See that. THAT needed to be criticized. And it’s not just that gaffe.
Every candidate has great things to offer. But you know what, we’re pretty great too and we deserve leadership that is listening to the people- not polls, not consultants and certainly not donors. And if we don’t open our mouths now that’s exactly who they will be listening too. We deserve better than skyrocketing healthcare costs on stagnant wages. We deserve to travel on safe roads to homes that we’re not in danger of losing because we cannot afford them. We deserve to Unionize if we want to and to retire with dignity. We deserve not to be pitted against one another and for that to stop we need a leader who will take on the systems and institutions that profit off of othering. We deserve clean air and water, along with flood mitigation. Hopefully, you believe you deserve that too. There are stores with 12 different types of red pens and markers. Find that one will carry your voice.