Tuesday, August 17, 2010

It's About More Than Just Harry Reid

(Also at Daily Kos)

OK, so I let him have it yesterday. Well, he earned it. And there was no good reason to badmouth an Islamic cultural center in Lower Manhattan. Last I checked, we have freedom of religion in this country... And it's not like most people are even all that concerned about it.

So why can't I just kick Harry Reid to the curb? Well, it's complicated. I'd rather not hurt all the deserving Democrats here in Nevada by cutting off the nose to spite our face.

As I've said before, I've come to know Reid in a way most here don't. I know deep down, he's a good person who wants to do right for Nevada and America. That's actually why I was so disappointed that he allowed himself and his campaign to be suckered into Sharron Angle's disgusting demagoguery.

But that's just it, Sharron Angle is just too batshit crazy to be allowed anywhere near The United States Senate. For gawd sake, she's declared holy war against the color BLACK!

Reid’s supporters have put a spotlight on Angle’s emphasizing religion in her campaign. Specifically, her statements that she is running as a “calling from God” and fighting the forces of evil who seek “to make government our God.”

Nice sound bites. But the events from 20 years ago might shine a better light on the mingling of religion and campaigning by Angle.

The heart of the story starts in 1991 and, perhaps surprisingly, with the Tonopah High School football team.

Mired in a dismal season, the Muckers traveled to Laughlin that fall. To nearly everyone’s surprise, the relatively-new Clark County school defeated Tonopah. It was Laughlin’s first-ever football win.

Tonopah coach Randy Jones was so incensed that he told his team in the locker room following the game it was the blackest day in Mucker history.

Springing ahead, Jones came up with an innovative idea to fire up his charges for their 1992 homecoming game against Laughlin. Utilizing the “darkest day” theme, he suggested the Muckers could wear black jerseys to remember the previous year’s debacle.

With no resources for his plan, the coach asked his players to buy their own black uniform shirts. Not all complied but many did and they mostly their parents ponied up the cash to buy black jerseys. [...]

[O]pposing the black jerseys was another group including Angle, a member, if not its leader.

They argued against our charges wearing black on religious grounds.

I cannot quote scripture as they did to justify their point but the gist of their argument was that black as a color was thoroughly evil, invoking the supernatural and especially the devil my take from dictionary definitions and not from scripture.

Angle may or may not have thought this a political statement. But she became a high profile advocate of a specific religious position during her very first campaign.

WHAT. THE. FUCK??!! Sharron Angle simply has no clue as to where to draw the line between personal views and public policy.

Oh, and her "great ideas" that she's so proud of are horrifying. She wants to destroy Social Security and Medicare in favor of something more like the Chilean "retirement plan" under military dictator Augusto Pinochet. She hates public schools and would rather see them close than bring home our federal tax dollars to keep kids in school. She hates working moms, "homosexual sodomites", and anything suggesting "government is god". (HUH??!!)

No wonder she's hiding from reality. For her, reality bites!

Even considering yesterday's huge mistake, Nevada can't afford to lose Harry Reid. Sharron Angle wants Nevada to become the nation's radioactive waste dump. She wants to forfeit our opportunities for renewable energy because she doesn't believe the climate crisis is real. She doesn't care about any jobs except her own...

And sadly, she's not alone. In fact, Joe Heck is running in my Congressional District and he piggybacks off Angle whenever it's convenient. He runs in the same teabagger circles, shares her views on eliminating Social Security & Medicare, and also believes it's not his job to care about any of our jobs. Despite profiting so much off his government contracts, Joe Heck can't be bothered to care about us here in Southern Nevada (even though he wants our votes!).

Rep. Dina Titus (D-Fabulous), thankfully, believes differently.

Dina Titus is also a true champion for LGBTQ equality. And she has always stood for sound environmental policy. And she supported health care reform despite the millions of dollars worth of ads pumped into here by the HMOs and the Chamber of Commerce.

And Titus' best shot at winning is Reid winning. You see, the 3rd Congressional District is essentially "The Bellwether of Nevada". As NV-03 goes, so goes the state. Fortunately the state party is putting together a great field operation, but it's a coordinated field operation for Reid, Titus, and all the other Democrats running on the ballot this year. So essentially, Reid's fortunes and Titus' fortunes are connected.

And honestly, so are a number of Democrats running for statewide office, state legislature, and local office. Right now, our state is in the midst of a terrifying fiscal crisis. Essentially, our state is broken and we'll need as many sane people as possible to fix it. Unfortunately, a number of Republicans don't want to be a part of the solution, as the teabaggers have invaded the party, threatened everyone open to dialogue with "the other side", and even succeeded in defeating an incumbent moderate Republican State Senator in the primary. So not only is Sharron Angle running for US Senate here, she also has an army of "tea partiers" down the ballot threatening to wreak havoc on our state if elected.

So this election is not just about Harry Reid. It's about the very future of Nevada. It's about whether or not Nevada agrees with the neanderthal "philosophy" of the teabaggers (and more importantly, their corporate backers). It's about whether Nevada wants to move forward in building a more sustainable future.

Look, our state is in the midst of the worst recession we've faced in over 70 years. People here need jobs. People here need to stay in their homes. People here need real solutions to the many woes we presently face. And as frustrated as I've been with Harry Reid in the last 36 hours, we just can't afford to lose him AND risk losing so many good progressive Democrats who don't deserve that kind of fate.

So excuse me while I turn down the radical right's "Mosque-gate" bait. I need to get back to making sure my state and my country gets on the right track.

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