We got a big taste of what the Republican party is about at the RNC. A wide variety of speakers took the podium. We heard Happy Day‘s Scott “Chaci” Baio’s very lackluster speech. Gov. Rick Scott and AG Pam Bondi, who IMHO, did their typical pandering. The RNC even had a gay man speak. Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal. In his speech, he told attendees (in part) “proud to be gay. I am proud to be a Republican. But most of all, I am proud to be an American.”
While it was considered by some historic to see or hear an LGBT person speak at the RNC, especially after their very anti-gay platform was revealed, I have to question: Why this man? He certainly doesn’t represent the average LGBT person. Is it because he is very wealthy? Why didn’t the RNC seek out someone from “the community” living the everyday life, actually living in the real world of trouble and disdain for who they are?
The RNC all but spit in the face of the Log Cabin Republicans, who have sung the praises of the Republican party for as long as I can remember. It’s no secret how I and many feel about the LCR. We just don’t understand how anyone could ever support people who would rather see you disappear than stand by your side. But to each his or her own. I do hope this was a wakeup call to the LCR’s and they see their party as many others do and find some other way to support change in America with people who will include them as LGBT.
If there was a shock moment in the convention, it had to be former presidential candidate Ted Cruz. While Ted is one person I have not anything favorable to say about, I will applaud him for not pandering to Trump by endorsing him. The mudslinging sure flew at him as soon as he left the stage. Media jumped on it in seconds and it was a big topic for a few days.
A surprise, but not a shock: Trump’s choice for VP, Mike Pence. Donald, if this is how you show the LGBTQI communities that you’re their friend, I can only imagine who your choice would be if you disliked us!
And then there is the man himself, Donald J. Trump. I was hardly surprised at his attacks on President Obama and Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton. I don’t think anyone else was either. I’m not even going to go into that normal diatribe. You can’t expect anything less. What was interesting was during Trump’s speech, the words “I alone can fix it.” The Atlantic.com (July 21, 2016) didn’t waste time at all talking about this in an article of the same title. In a nutshell, I hear this as Trump saying that he will do whatever he wants and nobody is going to stop him. I found this quite interesting considering his very party has stopped President Obama doing many things just about since day one. It was their goal to stifle President Obama on any and everything, and will continue to be status quo until his last day in office.
“I Alone” certainly doesn’t ]sound like “Make America Great Again,” and that’s scary.
This past Saturday, my friend Shane invited me to attend the Clinton/Kaine rally at FIU in Miami. I accepted because it would be my first time at such an event. More importantly, I knew very little about Tim Kaine, and it was important for me to find out as much as I could, especially after looking him up on Wikipedia after being announced as the selected running mate for Hillary Clinton. Sometimes you have to see a person right in front of you to see what your gut reaction is.
I was amazed at not only the energy, but the amount of younger adults in attendance. Maybe it had to do with the rally being held on FIU’s campus, but still, a great sight to behold.
While I was very excited to both see and hear Hillary in person for the first time ever, I pretty much felt I knew her. I wanted to hear from the stranger, Tim Kaine.
He took to the podium and seemed to have won everyone over almost immediately. Big smile, a personality to the point you would want Tim to be your friend, and hang out and talk, laugh. He was far from a stiff speaking politician. Tim worked the crowd and spoke to everyone as if he was addressing them one on one. Very personal, very as a matter of fact, and very to the point. I was blown away at his background. But what I believe won everyone over the most was the fact his very human side came out while he was talking about the worst day in his life–the 2007 Virginia Tech shootings. He literally stopped to regain his composure. Now, some will see that as weak. I see it as a real person who isn’t afraid to be himself.
“Strength Together.” As a team, I saw that on Saturday.
For those of you who may question, I am registered NPA, especially after being disenchanted with both parties for some time. I do have hopes both mainstream parties will one day come back to what they once were. Do your homework, get to know your candidates AND VOTE!
I leave you with this quote from U.S. Senator Tim Kaine: “Do you want to be right or do right?”
Rev. Joel S. Slotnick is an ordained Interfaith minister and full time digital court reporter. He can be found on Facebook and followed on Twitter.