Friday, October 3, 2008

On Molly Ivins & Civil Discourse

Or the absence of her thereof, there's an article in Salon today from Anne Lamott. Parts I like best:

"She'd have been pissed at the Democrats for not being as robust as they should have been on civil liberties, even as she reasserted her heartbreaking faith in American democracy, the faith that if we stuck together, we'd figure it out in the end. We'd somehow help the poor.

She would have celebrated the tidal roar of support from younger voters, who have the vision and stamina to fight for someone who would hold the nation's leaders to account, people who would fight to make this a country where it was once again safe to be a small child, or a very old person, which it has not been for approximately 7.6572 years."

I'll be voting soon. And my vote will make me feel good. I haven't voted for a national ticket I felt this good about since Clinton-Gore '96. (I wish Al Gore had been as compelling in '00 as he is now.) I'm starting to feel as good about Obama-Biden as I did about voting for Howard Dean in '04.

I have to constantly say to my students, "Look, the other side honestly thinks that they are doing the right thing for this country. It just happens to be different from what you think might be the best course of action." And I think it's important to say, to retain civility in political discourse. But I'm ashamed to say that although I believe it of the Republicans, I don't think that they would think it of me. I fear that my positivity is all for nothing.

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