Do What We MUST…
Like everybody else, I’m about to lose my effing mind over the upcoming election.
Now I realize CAMP Rehoboth, Inc. is a non-profit organization and therefore unable to be political. Non-profits can advocate for causes, but not candidates. CAMP, as an organization, must keep its corporate mouth shut.
But I’m a free agent. So here I go. The theme of this column is one I have espoused for many, many years: it’s not good enough just to vote. You have to FIGHT for your candidate or your cause. And fight hard.
Now, more than ever.
And if you need any further evidence about now more than ever just look at what happened to one member of our community, in her own words on Facebook, on the day she went to vote at Cape Henlopen High School in the September primary.
I wish I had gotten a picture of the woman who did not want me to vote today at Cape Henlopen High School.
I walked in the door. A gentleman said, “Can I help you sir?” I corrected him that I was not a sir. He did not apologize.
I said, “I will go to the other table where they won’t insult me.”
But the person at table two informed me I was not in that district. The person at table three smiled at me, looked at my voter registration card and she said, “Alicia—that’s a pretty name, but that’s not you.”
“Yes it is,” I replied.
She said, “But it’s a woman’s name.”
I said, “Are you questioning if it is me or if I am a woman? I AM a woman.”
She then said, “Really?”
I repeated, “Are you questioning if I am a woman?”
“Yes,” she said.
“Really?” My anger was rising. I started to gesture taking off my shirt and said, “Would you like proof?”
The police lady standing off to the side steps in. “Can I help you, sir?” (OY!!!! SERIOUSLY?) I said, “You too?”
Finally, they led me to the sweet lady who signed me in under my registered name and then I voted.
I’m mostly angry by the rudeness and lack of apology by anyone. Is this a case of gender insensitivity or a crude form of voter suppression? Or both?
I say both. The way this election season is going I am absolutely certain it’s gender insensitivity. Why? Because a certain orange-faced, comb-overed, meglo-maniacal bully has, to bastardize his campaign slogan, MADE AMERICA HATE AGAIN.
And the haters feel they have the right to say whatever they think, no matter who it hurts. And here’s the important thing about the incident related in this column—while these kinds of confusions do happen, frequently, it’s the aftermath here that is so frightening. Nobody felt the need to admit their error and apologize. No one was sorry for offending the voter.
Bigots have been emboldened to make their offensive mistakes (if it was a mistake, hard to know) and then display absolutely no remorse, embarrassment, guilt, no nothing. They have been granted permission to offend at will the people they have been encouraged to despise.
Not a pretty picture. Our misidentified voter has been urged to report this incident to one or all of the many governing bodies overseeing the election process. I hope she does.
Upon reading about this incident on facebook, County Council candidate Leslie Ledogar immediately advised this voter to “please report this incident to the League of Women Voters of Sussex County, and please also email the Department of Elections. They have a GOTV (Get Out The Vote) subcommittee that is working on this very issue. You are right to bring it to public attention. It should NEVER happen.
You are so right, Leslie Ledogar. But now what do we do?
Speaking only for myself, we do what we must. For the next 18 days or less, depending on when you are reading this column we must give up railing against the bigotmonger.
We must dive headlong into passionate support of the candidate we want to win this election to help bring back civility, sensitivity, and responsible leadership.
Speaking entirely for myself, I think Hillary is an enormously qualified candidate. I am passionate about her proposed policies and the progressive values she represents. Maybe you’re not. I don’t care. But if you don’t gin up the passion in a hurry, you’re going to be looking at an emperor with no damn clothes turning our country into a sewer of hatred, bigotry, and dangerous, destructive ideas. Don’t just say you don’t want that to happen—fight for it not to happen.
So here’s the plan, and you can jump on the bandwagon with a smile and a song, or grindingly gritted teeth, I don’t care which. Just jump on.
1. Get a button, a sign, a hat, a t-shirt. Don’t just vote, fight!
2. Write emails to your friends. Ask them to join you with you. Tell them their vote will not be enough. They must FIGHT. Click on this column on camprehoboth.com when it is posted and forward it to your whole email list (unless they are on the other side, which begs the question “How can you be friends with somebody who wants a con-artist fascist hater to lead our country?”) Get those emails going. Don’t just vote, fight!
3. Post and share information on facebook. There are so many amazing statistics and quotes online that show the truth about the economy, immigration, and the LIES being told. Go all out to protect your values by supporting the candidate who can fight for LGBT dignity. JUST DO IT and go! Don’t just vote, fight!
4. Write letters to the editor. Yes, you can, even if you flunked the English portion of your S.A.T. exams. Letters can be short. 300 words maximum, less is fine. Make one single point, once a week. Forward the letters to, or email the Cape Gazette or The Wilmington News Journal (P.O. Box 15505, Wilmington, DE 19850 or online at delawareonline.com), or any newspaper you’d like to reach. And you must sign your name. Anonymous letters are not printed. Don’t just vote. WRITE and fight.
So you get my point. Pull yourself together and shout out loud and proud for the candidate who will protect us. So very much hangs in the balance. I will now close this rant and return to my regular programming.
Oh, and to my friend, the offended voter: I apologize to you in the name of all the assholes who offended you and those who wish to continue doing so.
Fay Jacobs is the author of As I Lay Frying—a Rehoboth Beach Memoir; Fried & True—Tales from Rehoboth Beach, For Frying Out Loud—Rehoboth Beach Diaries, and her newest book Time Fries—Aging Gracelessly in Rehoboth Beach.