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Obama's evolution could have
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As a local volunteer official with the Democratic Party, I sometimes have the privilege of speaking about the Party, its platform and its values to groups of students at local community colleges and high schools. Although my bias is evident, I do my best to present as even-handed an account as possible about our positions and the way they compare to those of the other side. These discussions tend to become more frequent as the school year ends—not only because it aligns nicely with the uptick in political interest that surrounds the June primary, but also because students are often eager to learn about opportunities to earn extra credits for engaging in political volunteerism for candidates and causes reflective of their values.

Earlier this week, I lectured at two public high school classes in the San Fernando Valley. While I prefer to attempt to have discussions or conversations with these classes, I use the term "lecture" on purpose. Each of the classes I met with had over 40 students packed somewhat like sardines into a portable classroom on the edge of the school grounds. And while the drastic underfunding of our public education system isn't the focal point here, I got treated firsthand to the consequences of the drastic budget cuts facing our state: in each case, our one hour of government class had expired long before every student who desired to was able to ask a question, much less engage in any substantial in-depth discussion about any particular issue.

Right-wingers are alarmed and desperate about the political ramifications of the reports that non-Hispanics whites now account for fewer than half of all births in the United States. If the groups of high-schoolers I talked to were indicative, their concern is rightly founded. The group of students I talked to in both classes were mostly of Latino or Asian descent. Most of them were not politically motivated in a significant way, but when it came time to actually discuss where each party stood on the issues, there was very little love in those classrooms for the positions of the Republican Party.

If anyone was wondering about how President Obama's announcement supporting marriage equality would impact things beyond the extra money and enthusiasm he may draw from a more motivated base, they need look no further than our nation's high schools. Whenever I started off asking what the main differences were between the Democrats and Republicans, marriage equality was always the first issue discussed: Democrats and President Obama supported it, they said—accompanied by spontaneous applause from a handful of the students—while Republicans and Mitt Romney oppose it. It goes without saying that one day of lecturing in a suburban high school in Los Angeles constitutes anecdotal evidence from an infinitesimal sample, but it still constitutes an interesting lesson: would these same students have claimed that the Democratic Party supported marriage equality even the previous week, before President Obama had made his historic announcement? Therein lies a key consequence: for better or for worse, depending on the region and demographic, Obama's stance has put the entire Democratic Party on record, and formed a definitive contrast between the parties, instead of uncertainty and half-measures.

The second most popular issue? Immigration reform. If the high school students I observed were in any way indicative of the population at large, the Republican Party needs to seriously rethink its approach to immigration if it wants to have a chance at earning any support from the ever-increasing Latino population in this country. These students were not only aware of what was happening across the nation in terms of new immigration enforcement policies, but were also aware of which political party was leading the drive to enact them. In my drive to avoid proselytizing and simply present the facts as best as I could, I concurred; I explained that it was the consensus opinion among Democrats to support a path toward citizenship for undocumented immigrants, while Republicans generally opposed it. In a moment of repartee that was at the same time shocking but not surprising, one of the students responded to my explanation of the Republican position by muttering only somewhat under her breath, "because they're racists." That's a message to Joe Arpaio, the authors of SB1070, and anti-immigrant legislators everywhere: when that young lady is old enough to vote, she and millions like her will simply never vote for your team. Ever. Congratulations.

In the end, it didn't matter what issues we discussed: whether it was access to contraceptives and abortion, the cost of education, marijuana legalization, or ending foreign occupations, these students were much more likely to take the progressive point of view. But here, there lies a valuable lesson for the Democratic Party: these students understood that the Republicans were against all of these things they cared about. But they did not feel that Democrats were necessarily for them. When these students become voters, they may never choose to align with Republicans; but whether they choose to align with Democrats as anything more than out of opposition to Republicanism could depend on how good a job we do on taking a definitive stand on some of these issues and educating people about those positions.

But by far the highlight of my experience? The precocious youngster who responded to my question about the differences between Democrats and Republicans by claiming that Republicans wanted to impose austerity as an economic policy, which isn't the correct response in a recession. It was all the proof I needed that even in the darkest of times, there is still hope in the world.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Youth Kos 2.0.

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Comment Preferences

  •  wonderful news. . . but (25+ / 0-)

    I wonder what will be left of the country their inherit.  Will it even matter what 2/3 - or even 99% think?

    "How can the United States be the Greatest Nation ever if it is the only modern nation where citizens hold bake sales to pay for life saving medical care?" Single payer is coming but how many people will die before it becomes the only solution?

    by 4CasandChlo on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:12:27 PM PDT

  •  Some very good points...some things I've noticed (22+ / 0-)

    that resonate with the younger folks is that if you show them something that relates to them, they get it more than just telling them.  

    I teach HS govt and civics, so have some experience with this.  Young people track pretty closely to the "postmodern" views from the Pew Political Typology:  http://www.people-press.org/...

    They are more cynical about government, liberal on social issues, but a touch conservative on economics.  However, if I show them a film that they can understand, such as Which Way Home about child immigrants or Inside Job, they tend to view things in a much more liberal way.  Also, one of the better reading assignments I gave to them was to write a reflection paper on the following interviews:

    William F. Buckley (2007):
    http://townhall.com/...

    Grover Norquist (2011):
    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/...

    Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1990):
    http://articles.latimes.com/...

    Dean Baker (2011):
    http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/...

    Almost every student, even those who self-identified as "conservative," who read these was in agreement with Dean Baker and hated Norquist, without my prompting.  

    I very strongly feel that if we can show them in ways that appeal to them the different choices, we'll have the better argument.  

    That's why it is of the utmost importance that we get the messages of Mann and Ornstein out to them--that it is not a "both sides do it" problem, but a GOP problem that is driving their futures into the crapper...

    Buck up--Never say die. We'll get along! Charlie Chaplin, Modern Times (1936).

    by dizzydean on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:23:06 PM PDT

    •  Wm. S. Buckley Jr. (4+ / 0-)

      I do miss hearing Buckley drone on with his heavy accent and "big" words. That he was the "intellectual" Republican of his era. What that means today is he is where many Dems have moved. Not leftward, but over the middle of the 1970's to the right.

      An aside, the most important work that he produced (at least to me) was a video on celestial navigation. I think that product demonstrates why he was so good at politics. He could take one of the more complex concepts and simplify it so almost anyone could learn it.

      •  Yes, Intellectual. (4+ / 0-)

        "What do you think the President [Clinton] should do [with regard to some issue of the early 90's]?"

        Buckley in a PBS aired debate: "I think the President should resign."

        Big words, teabagger intellect.

        We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

        by Gooserock on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:38:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  As much as I loathed his ideas, he left behind an (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Heart of the Rockies, yaque

        intellectual vacuum for conservatives.  Who can claim the mantle of "conservative with ideas" today?  Paul Ryan?  What a joke they've become...

        Buck up--Never say die. We'll get along! Charlie Chaplin, Modern Times (1936).

        by dizzydean on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:40:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I used to think Buckley was an intellectual (6+ / 0-)

        Republican. Then I saw a video his debate with James Baldwin from 1965.  Intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, but especially with integrity, Baldwin wiped him out. Buckley seemed superficial, glib.  Baldwin was transcendent. The debate subject: “The American Dream is at the Expense of the American Negro.”

        Can't seem to link. Worth every minute.

    •  hope youre doing some (7+ / 0-)

      Union history with them, too!  Someone needs to give kids the counter balance to "right to work".

    •  The diarist sort of sums it up (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      D minor, mrsgoo, Rick B, yaque
      these students understood that the Republicans were against all of these things they cared about. But they did not feel that Democrats were necessarily for them.
      We need to get the message out to them.  Better yet, the people at the top of the party need to get the message out to them.  They have the bully pulpit.
    •  Democrats need to articulate where we stand (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joe wobblie, yaque, dizzydean

      but if they do, the media considers them "nonserious" and doesn't cover them.

      I keep telling people that the conservative issues are the issues of a rural agricultural society that is being overtaken by a modern industrial and urban society. The Democratic politicians are too old to have given up the rural culture other than just piecemeal.

      If you want to know when the agricultural rural culture was overtaken by the modern one, in the media it was when detective shows replaced westerns as the dominant type show. That was the 60's.

      The American politicians - including the Democrats - absorbed their culture from mostly before that changeover. Political rhetoric seems to always trail at least a generation behind the cultural reality, and the (urban) kids going to school now are way ahead of the politicians.

      So why aren't kids voting when they get old enough?

      The politicians, even Democrats, aren't speaking to them! That's not the only reason. Some of it is that the kids aren't old enough to realize that things outside their own families and careers matter to them and to their children.

      The media is also stuck in the past, and they have not had any evidence that politically there is anything new happening, but the modern culture is still moving rapidly and taking America over. The media doesn't get it, but the evangelical preachers sure do. That's what they call the breakdown in morals. It's not that. It's that the morality of living in the urban culture is very different from living in the wild west and in small town America, and the preachers fear the change because it involves a less prominent quasi-government role for preachers.

      My point, however, is that the kids going through school see little in politics that relates to how they live because the politicians and the media who distribute political ideas simply aren't speaking to them.

      The US Supreme Court has by it's actions and rhetoric ceased to be legitimate. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot - over

      by Rick B on Sun May 20, 2012 at 09:44:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for this; my niece is graduating from (8+ / 0-)

    a SF Valley high school next month and while I'd like her to eventually attend college in the East, she has some hope for success in SoCal and I am confident that even though she can't vote in 2012, her vote for our next Governor and Senator will be Democrat

    But by far the highlight of my experience? The precocious youngster who responded to my question about the differences between Democrats and Republicans by claiming that Republicans wanted to impose austerity as an economic policy, which isn't the correct response in a recession. It was all the proof I needed that even in the darkest of times, there is still hope in the world.

    slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:23:48 PM PDT

  •  Eisenhower sent the Natl Guard to Little Rock (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Heart of the Rockies

    How many African-Americans vote Republican today?

    Around here, Latinos not only vote Republican, they run as Republicans.

    •  Good point (0+ / 0-)

      If a future Democratic candidate gives a campaign speech on "traditional marriage" near the spot where Matthew Shepard was killed, the Democrats might suffer with younger generations.

      Hell, if the Repubs want to embrace progress and stop selling out the future, let them.

    •  Ahh, but the Civil Rights Act trumps that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Heart of the Rockies

      and by quite a bit.  

      But there is a point, that as Hispanics assimilate, many will become Republicans.  

      Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

      by nominalize on Sun May 20, 2012 at 05:43:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not necessarily... (0+ / 0-)

        ...Assimilated Hispanics may or may not lean more Republican.  It would be interesting to see a comparison of voting patterns for Hispanics who are immigrants versus those whose families have been in the country for generations -- and there certainly are plenty of folks who fall in the latter category in states across the southwest.  In many cases, they were here before these states were even a part of the US.

        My suspicion is that we will still see that those voters lean Democratic.  Why?  Because the perception that Republicans are racist, hostile to poor people, and just generally unfriendly to those who aren't part of the white economic elite.  

        Consider, too, that Blacks, Jews, and GLBT voters all lean heavily to the Democratic party, even though these are all groups who are pretty much assimilated.

        Yeah, I know that the above meanders a bit...but the point remains that we shouldn't assume that as Hispanics assimilate they will inherently become more Republican.  The flip side of this is that we also shouldn't take their continued support for granted...

        Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

        by TexasTom on Sun May 20, 2012 at 06:44:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  each day I have up to 174 students in my classes (10+ / 0-)

    I teach government, both regular classes and Advanced Placement.

    The vast majority of my students are 10th graders.

    They are a very diverse group.

    There are some who identify as Republicans, not many, but even most of them disagree with Republicans on immigration.

    Most are appalled at the attacks on public education.

    Few of them are drawn at all to Romney.

    Now granted, Prince George's County MD is a heavily democratic community in the state that is by registration the most democratic in the nation.

    Still, even when they disagree with the President on issues, most are far more strongly drawn to him than they were to any of the Republicans, with the exception of a few who are libertarian and/or strongly anti-war, and thus drawn to Ron Paul.

    "what the best and wisest parent wants for his child is what we should want for all the children of the community" - John Dewey

    by teacherken on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:31:59 PM PDT

  •  If you haven't yet, you might think (3+ / 0-)

    About how to encourage these young voters to regard themselves as VOTERS.  A reminder that they will eventually be the ones in charge of the nation and it's policies toward all these issues that they care about is timely.  The standard line in graduation speeches about graduates being the future isn't just rhetoric, it's literally true.  Kids tend to feel like they have so little control over their future, it's a good time to remind them that the youth vote is huge, and if they actua
    Ly turned out to vote en mass they will be running this country...

  •  You don't mention the environment (3+ / 0-)

    Although no one seems to care very much these days, Anthropomorphic Global Climate Change is real and serious threat to these young people.  Did you get any sense of where they are on that issue?

    "I shall never surrender or retreat." --Lieutenant Colonel William Barret Travis

    by badger1968 on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:34:38 PM PDT

  •  In the future whites will not be majority (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus

    There is a 10 to 20% of the electorate who is horrified by the concept of what used to be ethnic (and sexual orientation) minorities getting to the levers of political power,

    I bet you the ethnic mix of the students in the SF Valley (where I live) pointed in this direction.

    This 10 to 20% have gravitated towards the Republican party which was enabled started by Nixon's Southern Strategy back in the late 60s.

    They represent up 30 to 40% of the Republican party base and they seem to have become dominant in their ranks.

    Although I see a future where the Republican party will mutate or disappear, I see a confrontation building up.

    Having an African American president has, if anything, accelerated this process.

    The next 10 years will be critical in shaping the future that these kids will inherit.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:35:34 PM PDT

  •  Like Your Closing Comment From The Student (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dizzydean, happymisanthropy

    Just amazed that it seems in unison the mainstream media either forgot Economics 101 or didn't take it.

  •  In my son's school (12+ / 0-)

    all the kids were supposed to write a letter to Obama when he got elected.  More than half were variations on "Let gay people marry".

    And then there's the report of a 5 year old's response when asked if people of the same sex should be allowed to get married "Well DUH!"

    and this conversation between a HS student and a teacher:

    Student: "Do you have kids?"
    Teacher: "I thought I mentioned, I'm gay"
    Student; "What does THAT have to do with it?"

  •  They Are Correct Not to Expect the Democrats to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy, Rick B

    take the progressive view on many issues particularly the overarching economic and international ones.

    They're not going to have many candidates motivating them to vote unless masses of the people mainly older find a way to begin creating those candidacies and cramming them down the party's gullet.

    First Nov. 6th, then Nov. 7th we need to get to work on the problem we can fix.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:40:47 PM PDT

  •  Bully pulpit: (5+ / 0-)
    [W]ould these same students have claimed that the Democratic Party supported marriage equality even the previous week, before President Obama had made his historic announcement?
    The positions the President takes DO matter. One definitive declaration from Obama branded the party as pro-marriage equality.

    In the short run, whether the composition of the current Congress allows the enactment of a given piece of progressive legislation pales in comparison to the longer term upside for the party of clearly setting policy positions and goals.

    Imagine if the President articulated bold positions on Wall Street accountability and on the necessity of equal-to-the-task stimulus spending to put America back to work.

    For millions of voters, what the party stands for boils down to what the President says it stands for.

    The perfect is NOT the enemy of the good. The perfect is the course you advocate in order to ARRIVE at the good. When you BEGIN the journey on the path of merely "good," inevitably you wind up at meh.

    by WisePiper on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:43:20 PM PDT

  •  The R plan going forward (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jwinIL14, Rick B

    Great diary.

    "That's a message to Joe Arpaio, the authors of SB1070, and anti-immigrant legislators everywhere: when that young lady is old enough to vote, she and millions like her will simply never vote for your team. Ever. Congratulations."
    Thus the Republican attempts to disenfranchise the young, the poor, and the non-white.  They've even been floating the idea lately that women shouldn't vote.  Next they'll claim that only those "engaged in society" should vote, meaning those with jobs or income over a certain dollar amount.  

    Our democracy is already restricted by money.  We all know this.  If you wish to run for anything other than local office you have to have millions of dollars in support.

    The only way the Rs can grow is by shrinking the voter base further and further.  I wonder where the choke point will be- when they have no choice but to turn to totalitartianism to simply force their views on others, or make a hard turn left and return to some measure of sanity.  An friend of mine says that when she first began voting (she's in her early 50s now), she'd vote Dem, but if the R won you could at least have the confidence that they were a decent human being and that the city, state, or country wouldn't go completely to hell during their term.  Now, with corporate money and groups like ALEC running amok and coordinating to dismantle our country and sell it off to the highest bidder, things can change for the worse very very fast.  

    I hope these kids have the right to vote in the future,  I hope they have the right to express themselves without fear, and I hope they have something left to improve by the time they're handed the keys to the smoking wreck.  I believe the future is bright.  I'm just sorry to be living through the interesting times.  But maybe, before I die, I'll see the pendulum swing in the correct direction again.

  •  California, San Fernando Valley (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ladybug53, Rick B, highacidity

    That is not "America", or more accurately, the America where kids aren't buried under a tsunami of church driven bullshit 24/7

    High school kids (white ones) in the Heartland are under so much pressure from parents and the like to worship the demented cult, it doesn't matter what is said.

    That's why the net is so critical--friend of mine from Mississippi says the racist/sexist/homophobic paradigm is starting to fade down there among the young, because they talk to people all over the world and realize that Dixie don't equal everything.

  •  A very telling part of this diary (0+ / 0-)
    But by far the highlight of my experience? The precocious youngster who responded to my question about the differences between Democrats and Republicans by claiming that Republicans wanted to impose austerity as an economic policy, which isn't the correct response in a recession. It was all the proof I needed that even in the darkest of times, there is still hope in the world.
    .
    There may very well become a time when these same people believe that there is a separation in need and accomodation.

    When and if that ever happens, we will see that race and background will not be as big a predictor of how people vote in this country.

  •  ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy, ladybug53

    This is exactly why the slogan "Forward" is so perfect for this election. It sets a clear contrast, nay, a choice for the next four years and beyond. Democrats are looking ahead to the inevitable and saying, "let's do things right." On gay marriage, immigration, climate change, energy, a modern economy, they're looking ahead. Republicans are a party that wants to take the country backwards to a time when the straight, white, wealthy male was the only demographic that garnered any attention. I mean, contraception and child labor laws were serious issues of discussion in their primary. Democrats are the party of the future, and Republicans are the party of the past, and it's good to see that young people realize that.

  •  thanks for the valuable input, great diary. nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jwinIL14

    Republicans only care about themselves, their money, & their power.

    by jdmorg on Sun May 20, 2012 at 04:55:46 PM PDT

  •  What Do "Brown Skins" Want? (6+ / 0-)

    About the same as us white folk.

    I spent 20 years living in SoCal and enjoyed my times with the Latino community.

    Perhaps the most poignant moment was when my oldest daughter, who taught fifth grade at a school in the eastern suburbs of LA, had a series where parents of the children in her class came and discussed their careers, education, etc. I got to come as the parent of the teacher.

    I was working at NASA / JPL which is best known for planetary exploration. My daughter's class was primarily "children of color." I asked a few questions, like how many of the kids wanted to go to college. Almost all raised their hands. I went on to show some pictures that had been captured by the planetary probes. When I showed a picture of the red planet, many in the class responded with, "Ooh -- Mars." Turns out they had studied Mars the previous grade. I felt a gratifying chill up my spine. Later, I entertained questions about black holes, life on other planets -- you name it.

    In other words: they are cognizant.

    Sometimes I get the feeling the Republicans think these same people are unaware, unknowing, apolitical, etc. Sorry Boehner  et al. Although I left SoCal in 1998 (my daughter still teaches there), the Republicans have the problem in that the children are more likely to be "internet aware" than their parents and pass on to their elders all the chatter of how the Republicans are hell bent on denying them human dignity.

     

  •  Customs brokers, freight forwarders (0+ / 0-)

    Some of the owners or managers of the freight forwarders, customs brokers and trading companies that manage our trade with Asia live in The Valley.

    (Or at least they did back when I worked in the industry)

    With the tendency of some progressives to scapegoat Asia for our economic problems and to advocate for the return of Smoot Hawley; some people might be voting Republican just so that their family's business will still be viable.

  •  This is an odd diary (0+ / 0-)

    I was not aware that in NoCal a politico could "lecture" public school classes.  Not something that can happen in SoCal.  

    I agree that we (here in California) now see hispanics the majority "race" in our state and "whites" now are in the minority.  It will be interesting to see how that plays out with regard to legislation with the eventual realization of more "brown" people than "white" people in our legislature.  Will this new demographic see the need for austerity in the most troubled state economically or will they go forward with increased spending and increased debt so as to accomodate the "needs" of the state's populace?  

    It will be interesting, no doubt.  I think we are going to see a moderate-to-conservative (where I stand, politically) directive out of sheer necessity.

    •  do you see a need for austerity? (0+ / 0-)

      I see a need for more revenue. What's with the scare quotes around 'needs'? The needs are real, the fact that those with money don't want to pay taxes is the problem.

      "Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war" - John Adams

      by esquimaux on Sun May 20, 2012 at 06:49:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The diarist is in San Fernando Valley (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      highacidity, wsexson

      which is in Southern California.

      Hispanics are not the majority in CA. Rather- no group has enough people to make up a majority. Every group is a minority.

      Spending and debt are not the only options neither. We could raise revenues with an oil production tax as has been proposed more than once, or the modest increase in income tax being proposed now.

  •  Great diary. Similar to my experience (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jwinIL14

    in ad hoc discussions with college students. Tipped and recced.

  •  The GOP is a god awful waste of human potential (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jwinIL14

    I'm a 43 year old liberal and I have no earthly idea what the Democratic party stands for. The Green party has 10 principal that you can look up and understand clearly. The Democrats'  only principal seems to be to win elections. As long as the Republicans organize, plan, and drive the agenda further and further to the right every year, and as long as the Democrats define winning as eking out a slight electoral victory by pandering to the ever-rightward "center", they are doomed as a party, and we are doomed as a society.

    There is no Democratic party plan for immigration reform. If there was, why wasn't it implemented when the dDemocrats controlled congress and the White House? Don't give me that 60 votes sh*t. The Republicans didn't need 60 votes to push through their agenda. The problem is that the party, especially it's well-heeled and ancient leadership, is lost in a sea of compromise and wussiness. They live only to please their corporate donors and see no need to change the system of official bribery that has usurped our democracy.

    Obama was supposed to represent that Hope for Change from the status quo, but in terms of our rights and liberties, we have only lurched further and further rightward since 2008. It's nice that Obama "evolved" (cop out) the opinion that Gay marriage is now OK, but saying it's a state's decision, basically tells us he is willing to stake nothing on fighting this battle, and is happy to see every state decide, one by one, that legalized bigotry is acceptable. The people continue to be ignored and disrespected by both parties.

    •  That's the reason I am a Democrat (0+ / 0-)

      Precisely because there is no platform. The platform of the democratic party is simple: We are not batsh*t insane. Which is enough in this day and age when 80% of the republican party is in fact insane.

      The Green Party is a lovely idea. Too bad we have a 2 party winner-take-all type of system.

  •  Just vote, and we'll sort it out from there. (0+ / 0-)

    (democracy - nobody said it was going to be easy)  Not a bad new sig. line?

    "Four more years!" (Obama Unencumbered - The Sequel)

    by jwinIL14 on Sun May 20, 2012 at 06:38:18 PM PDT

  •  So long as many leading Dems continue (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wsexson

    to push or validate RW lies and memes and try to come across as "reasonable centrists" (i.e. moderate Repubs), run from the party's historical liberal positions and values, and refuse to unequivocally side with the 99%, I can see why today's youth won't necessarily embrace the party even as they reject the GOP.

    Case in point. Cory Booker, Chris Christie's new BFF, today strongly denounced an ad currently running that criticizes Romney's Bain record as a vulture capitalist. And on MTP Dick Durbin agreed that we need to cut spending and decrease the deficit right now even though few serious economists agree. The party continues to live in the 90's with its DLCesque centrism. No wonder kids don't identify with it these days. It simply doesn't speak to them or ring true.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Sun May 20, 2012 at 06:43:02 PM PDT

  •  They've got a plan for that (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    highacidity

    "...she and millions like her will simply never vote for your team. Ever. Congratulations."

    That's why they're arranging that this Latina will simply never vote.  Ever.  If they have to get their Supreme Court to go along with retrospective denial of citizenship to the descendants, unto the nth generation, of those who can't prove their ancestors were here legally, that's just what they'll do.

    We should have destroyed the presidency before Obama took office. Too late now.

    by gtomkins on Sun May 20, 2012 at 07:03:22 PM PDT

  •  Hey I'm 52 (0+ / 0-)

    And I sure as hell don't know what the Democrats stand for, and I don't vote for anyone who is not a Democrat.

    It all goes back to finance, and our folks are almost as bought and sold as the Republicans.  

    My impression is that there is no fighting the tidal wave of corporate money and that it owns our party almost as much or just as much as it owns the "bad guys."

  •  Lucky Students! (0+ / 0-)

    Sounds like you're a great teacher, giving your students the best gift of all!  Instead of using the classroom to force your political ideologies upon your students, you present them with differing viewpoints and let them make up their own minds what they will embrace and what they will reject.  What a novel, responsible approach, when you consider what conservatives in Texas are trying to do in the schools with respect to curriculum.  

    And, thank you for making this point, as well:

    That's why it is of the utmost importance that we get the messages of Mann and Ornstein out to them--that it is not a "both sides do it" problem, but a GOP problem that is driving their futures into the crapper...
    Our best hope at getting the truth out and fostering real change will be starting with people who have not been saturated with the prevailing propaganda and are open-minded enough to discover the truth for themselves.

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