I’ve boasted on my boys Seth and Mackenzie often. Today it’s time to turn to one of my daughters – Tara. Tara came into my life later and from an unexpected source. We’ve had to work a little harder at building a relationship than I had to with my other children. With my other children, the foundation of our relationship was built on the many meals, readings, trips, talks and simple parenting. My relationship with Tara started with an unexpected phone call. She was 19 and curious.
From then on we worked slowly and steadily to carve out a unique space. Enter philosophy and politics – Tara has the same fire to effect the world as I do. She unlike me is a “limousine liberal” without the limousine – neither of us have limousines – she has the maternalism – I’m too pessimistic to care if anyone is saved! Her basic view is that education will free her opponents from the faulty views they hold. I don’t care about teaching my opponent – I just want to them to shut up! If not shut up, know that they have been out maneuvered – it’s all about tactics for me – not saving them from their stupidity.
Tara and I talk each day about what is going on in the world of politics, where she likes to make note of the on going “wing nut” responses to Obama’s crusade to crush their soul’s. As for me, I simply like the ironic giggle I get from their foolishness. Obama’s campaign was really the opening that has led to the deepening of our father – daughter relationship.
She was the person who got me interested in volunteering for the campaign – the following letter she wrote sometime in September of 08.
[listen to song first] I feel that way. I write to you because I think you know how I feel, where I am coming from, and the struggle that we have all been on for so long.
If it matters, I am an African American single mother-This election means more to me than I can find the words to describe. I love this country despite all of our history.
And yesterday, I cried my last tears, after I watch the venomous, vile, and vitriolic display at the McCain-Palin rally unfold over the last few days. I was raised in a Southern Baptist church, and I was taught as a young child when things look bleak and you are backed up against a wall you just let go and let God. We as AAs have been subjected to the system and have the philosophy ingrained that we have to accept the things that we can not change.
Well here and now damn it–I have cried my last tears yesterday. I am going to fight!
I love the principles that our country was founded on–and I hate what some people are resorting to. And we will fulfill the promise of a More Perfect Union.
This is the election that will either save or end my life as I know it–nonetheless I will be different. I am different.
Just as I find comfort in the sentiments of an old negro spiritual, I find comfort in the words on your blog. You express–in clear succinct terms what I am feeling, what I am going through, and how I can make it to the other side. I can’t cry any more.
This moment has ignited a new found sense of civic duty, civic pride, and civic virtue that I have never experienced before. I owe it all to the residual effects of being an organizer.
Al, keep on telling the people how important this is.
Keep telling them to push one step further.
Keep telling them my struggle is our struggle .
Tell em’ not to cry.
Cause I cried my last tears, yesterday.