Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Inauguration Debate & More

My favorite news website (Newser.com) is featuring a story that has (predictably) sparked unusually lively debate in its comments section. A black writer calls for whites to give up their places in the Inauguration Day festivities so that more African American may witness the historic occasion. I couldn't risk getting involved with some provocative remarks.

Likewise, I had to defend Caroline Kennedy from some incredibly hateful attackers on the site with the following post:

I can't believe the hate spewing forth in these comments. The oldest of the Kennedy sons gave his life on a near suicide mission in WWII. JFK was a war hero as well, and was the first president to give a speech on Civil Rights since Lincoln. Then without passing "GO" he went straight to the heart of racist Texas to carry the message of the NEW FRONTIER. When his life was taken, the way was paved for LBJ to implement the changes President Kennedy died for, and more. Listen to the words of the song "Abraham, Martin, & John" -- it became a timeless classic for a reason.

Bobby Kennedy put himself on the line opposing the worst (but not the first) murderous, imperialist American war overseas, knowing that assassination in the US was becoming common for those who championed the downtrodden and unpopular causes. Ted Kennedy's companion died in an accident, and JFK, Jr. may have been reckless. But why should this disqualify Caroline Kennedy? Why should she risk assassination running for office before the time is right? She bravely challenged the Clinton machine (and some in her family) to support Obama. New Yorkers should give her the chance to serve out Hillary's second term, and then run for the office in two years. In the meantime, she can help support the Obama agenda in the Senate, where he will certainly need her help. All of us in this benighted, faltering country need her help.

Friday, January 02, 2009

If the Republican Party wants to have a shred of credibility four years from now it should again field a history making presidential ticket. Clearly Obama will have to fail fairly spectacularly to be denied a second four year term; knowing the conclusion is almost certainly foregone is even more reason for the Republicans to offer a slate that will go down into history despite losing. Nominating two women to head the ticket would be a surefire way to do that. A Palin / Lingle team would be credible, balanced, and appealing from a number of perspectives. Moreover, it could revitalize the party's image by championing the right to civil unions / domestic partnerships for same gender couples while still opposing gay marriage as Obama has (and does.)