Sunday, September 27, 2009

You Want To Buy A Flag?

What you hear from those who know: "Confession is good for the soul." Well, I have a confession to make. I don't fly the American flag. Sure I have one. I bought it right after Barack Obama was elected this country's 44th president. I was so proud of this country for that single act that I wanted to show my appreciation by hoisting a flag over my house.

This was my first time giving in to patriotic fervor. It was my first time, because, as Michelle Obama stated it, and gave critics and enemies talking points to attack her husband, Barack, "For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country."

After Barack became president, I hoped that my pride of country would continue. It didn't. Birthers, deathers, teabaggers, secessionists, those calling for civil war, and 'I want my country back' crowd, has snatched from me, what was, at best, a tenuous hold on patriotic expression.

To put it bluntly: I'm not proud of this country right now, and it may take the country awhile to win me back over. And, no, I'm not going to run for public office in this lifetime. My "not proud of my country" remark would quickly douse any hopes of that.

Now before you call me non-patriotic, let me say: I probably have more patriotism in my little finger than most have in their whole body.

If you haven't served in the military to protect your country, which I have (I volunteered.), then, don't call me unpatriotic. As a patriot, I've put my life on the line, and have spent four years of that life in service to my country.

Yet, because this country treats me as a foreigner, and gives me step-child status in the American family, this country will either embrace me, or I won't embrace it.

And that's where we stand right now, with an uneasy alliance.

And, like you, I want my voice heard. And to do that, blacks may have to stand apart. Here's my gripe: We need more than two parties representing the people of this country. I know: we have more than two on the books, but only two get play time. As long as Democrats and Republicans are calling the shots, we have to take our marching orders from them.

And yes, others have established major parties to compete with the Big Two. Ross Perot's Reform Party, for one, comes to mind, but many of these third parties become spoilers: They don't garner enough of the votes to go it alone. Here's another suggestion: Rather than launch a candidate, a third party should exist to throw its political clout and weight behind the party that represents their values, or will represent their values. As far as I know, there's no law that says third parties can't parlay their votes, and offer them up for political gain at some later time.

Today, Republicans aren't the party of compromise. Political compromise seems to be a thing of the past, a tactic that is now in disuse. Rather than seeking consensus, and compromise, Republicans have taken up an adversarial relationship to the Democratic party, and to the president in particular. They're more intent on destroying their opponents, than working with them, more intent on shaking up the ground, than in finding common ground--and they do this with a self-righteousness that makes them all the more insufferable.

This is not what I want in a political party--this "do or die" mentality. This passion to destroy the other party, and to see the other party as the enemy, will be this nation's undoing. And I don't think I exaggerate, especially when that political passion goes beyond civility, and Democrats are demonized daily by Right wing pundits.

Yet, this "Do Nothing" Republican Party is not exactly idle. It's busy opposing. And the targets don't matter: It could be something as harmless as a speech by the president to this nation's school students, or a remark during a news conference that a police department behaved "stupidly." The goal is to "search and destroy" the enemy. And the enemy, as always, is the Democrat Party.

Teddy Kennedy's politics is dead in the senate of today. I'm told he was the master of compromise, and oftentimes invited members across the aisle to his home to sit across the table from him as they dined. That kind of civility no longer exists in congress. If it does, it's rare.

And Blue Dog Democrats are more "dogs" than "blue." I know that that is a harsh critique. But so far, they're harder to bring around to the wishes of the whole, than if they represented the opposition. If these Blue Dogs are so fiscally conservative, more Right than Left, then they should switch parties. It's tantamount to having Republican wolves in a Democrat Hen House.

Our politics is increasingly becoming, "of the money, by the money, for the money." Many that are now opposing healthcare reform have been bought off by certain providers within the healthcare industry. This include many in the Do Nothing Party and the Democrat Party. Our flag is for sale to anyone with the money to buy it.

I have one, too. You want to buy a flag!?

13 comments:

field negro said...

Great post!I was sitting here in a court room doing a fist pump as I read it.

Blinders Off said...

Bravo BD,

You nailed it. There is another party trying to become mainstream Google "The Green Party".

I stop feeling loyalty to the Democrat Party in 2000, I am an Independent. I am still registered as a Democrat; the Democrat Party should not be too comfortable with that because I can always switch my vote in a General Election for a politician running as an Independent, Green, or Reformer if I feel they represent my interest best.

I believe many Americans feel discontent with both parties. I am ready to see some young fresh men and women to oppose all the bought and sold politicians that are in Washington today.

Ernesto said...

I share your frustration, BD. Especially as a veteran that also volunteered, only to have my idealism quickly squashed by the same malignant social forces you so eloquently describe.

I think a parliamentary system would be more effective at true represenatation, but I fear that if a third party got a lot of clout it probably would not be long before it too was bought off by the same folks that have so thoroughly corrupted the Big Two. I see the only way to solve this crisis is a Constitutional Amendment mandating 100 percent publically-financed campaigns and strict conflict of interest laws applying to politicains at every level. No more play for pay. No more subversion of democracy by money. No more rightwing Supreme Court equating bribery with free speech.

Black Diaspora said...

@Field: Glad you stopped by, and thanks for the "fist pump." It's my first.

@Blinders Off: Thanks. We've got to find a way to make a statement, and, at the same time, show our discontent.

Internecine battles between the Dems and Pubs wouldn't be happening at all, if we had a viable way to show our displeasure, and the political alternatives to make it stick.

Both parties know we're over a poltical barrel, and voters (black and white alike) either take it or leave it, without appreciable damage to either side.

@Ernesto: Eloquently stated. I like your assessment of the problem, and the solution you're proposing, especially a "parliamentary system" that would force compromise and meaningful engagement by opposing parties/factions, and the constitutional admendment.

As it stands now, power can still be concentrated (think Blue Dog alliance), but that power is being used more to disrupt the people's business than to conduct the people's business.

And if we don't like what's happening on The Hill, it may take months and even years to "throw the bums out" and reshape the balance of power.

Anonymous said...

The Democrat's are Pitiful, they allow the REP/CON to walk all over them! and not to mention the Pundit's that are suppose to stand in defense of the President, they make the President look Powerless!

I watch all the Cable new's network's and from what I hear and see, the President has weak people standing in the gap for him! look at Robert Gibb's, this man is no match for the REP/CON, I have to be honest, I don't know how in the world the President would allow this man to represent him! Gibb's should have been gone a long time ago!!! he may have been good for the campaign's, but, this is Washington, this is DOG EAT DOG!! and from what I have been witnessing lately, the REP/CON are all over the place biting and leaving MARK'S! now read between the line's on that!

Now, I don't know if the President was briefed before he ran for President but, he should have been told if by a Miralcle!! he would become the First Black President, he would be fighting the Spirit's of Goliath, Pharaoh, and last but not least the spirit of generational Racism!! for these are the spirit's that have a stronghold on this country! and why God would chose a Black man to fight these Force's are beyond me! for they are truly Force's! and it will take the President and the Power God has given him to BRING them DOWN and then DESTROY them! for God has put all Power in the President's hand's! for when you are in intense Battle, you never allow the Adversary to get the upper hand! what did David do to Goliath? for in my observation, it is the RE/CON party that should be DISMANTLED! for they Misrepresent God!

Now, I may get upset with the Democratic Leader's, but, they try to represent the people, and if you are a Righteous person you will gravitate toward their belief! but, on the other hand, the Leader's need to find a way to Defeat their Enemy's! for the person or people that have Compassion on God's people that is the side God is on!

iseisee

Black Diaspora said...

@iseeisee: "...he would become the First Black President, he would be fighting the Spirit's of Goliath, Pharaoh, and last but not least the spirit of generational Racism!!

No denying it, iseeisee, the president's got his hands full. And they're going to get fuller, probably the subject of my next blog entry.

There's a chorus out their denying the scope of racism in all of this, but Jimmy Carter kicked that sentiment to the curb with his recent comments on the racist attacks leveled at Obama.

And this Georgian ought to know racism when he sees it.

And I'm with you: I, too, got my hopes pinned on Obama as well, and am committed to keeping him safe with my prayers, and to advance his agenda with this blog, and all the e-mails, and letters I can send, and the petitions I can sign.

I've only begun to fight!

Anonymous said...

Black Diaspora, are you familiar with the WEBSITE called PAJAMA T.V.? well if not, you should check it out, listen to what Sonja Schmidt has to say about the White House and the President! I don't know where these people got my E-mail address from but, Good! I like to see the face's of the people that are the President's adversary's!!! did Rosa Park's fight the Good fight for this!!!

iseeisee

Black Diaspora said...

iseeisee, I checked out the site, but, alas, I wasn't able to view much of anything.

I guess my computer is not configured properly to download the video there.

I'll try again later.

It's possible that you left your address at another site, and you're now being passed around from one site to another.

Pajama T.V. doesn't appear to be all that kind to liberals or President Obama.

One thing for sure: They're not counting on the black vote in future elections.

Only a few blacks are going to give them the time of day in the years ahead.

Of course there're exceptions: notably, Constructive Feedback.

I liked your response over on Field regarding healthcare reform. Keep it coming. They may not want to hear it, but it must be said.

Thanks for your clear, strong, voice for what is right.

Monie said...

@Black Diaspora

I'm sick of the good cop/ bad cop ploy that the Democrats and Republicans play with us too.

I really hope that a third Party will emerge and sooner than later. I had hope for the Green Party but they just don't seem to be able to ever have a viable National candidate.

Lets hope that changes.

Black Diaspora said...

I like the way you describe it, Monie, "good cop/bad cop."

If the Pubs keep up their attack of President Obama, perhaps they'll go the way of the dodo bird, and the Green Party can supplant them.

Maybe far-fetched, but we can hope. I enjoy reading your posts over at Field.

Keep'em coming.

Lady-Cracker said...

Good post. Don't you just get tired of the same old same old from both our major parties?

MacDaddy said...

Good post. My first time coming to see you. I'll be back. And I got you linked over at my house at daddyBstrong.blogspot.com

Black Diaspora said...

@Lady-Cracker:

Read your recent comments @ Field on slavery.

Spot on!

Just as we need a strong public option in health care to up the competition, we also need strong political options at the national level to up the competition.

Just as insurance companies can raise rates with impunity, political parties can raise hell, and ignore the wishes of the people with equal impunity.

Where's there's no real competition, whether in healthcare or politics, the people are the ones who're made the suffer.

@MacDaddy:

Thanks, I'll return the favor.