“From Reagan Lover to Progressive at Heart”
When I was little kid, I only knew that the President of the United States was everything. He controls the country. He tells anyone and everyone what to do. The President is the single most protected person on the planet, not just because he’s in control of the US as a whole, but is the picture of nobility and honor.
The first president I heard of was Ronald Reagan. I saw him on TV giving speeches; though I had no clue of what he was saying or meant by it. He was the President and because of that, he was great. I just knew that he was so important, that not even movie stars could talk to him, and like me, only see him. I listened to the news on ABC and NBC during his speeches, call him the most powerful man in the world. He’s the leader of the free world. He controls the greatest military in the history of mankind. He challenged other leaders and forced them to tear down walls in the name of giving freedom to their people. I was placed into a behavioral correction facility and while there, I got a chance to see President Reagan, from about 100 yards away. We were all behind a fence, standing on a low-level brick wall, and cinderblocks left over from construction. Between he and the group, were a sidewalk, the three-lane street, another sidewalk with trees, a fence, the spectator bleachers on the soccer field, portable bleachers for people to watch, and then in the center of it all, he showed up. Two military helicopters with dual blades sat down. Countless troops poured out them both, and President Reagan exited out of the lead chopper surrounded by not only two marines on either side, but each marine was lead and tailed by secret service. They word the black shades, had ear pieces in, and their clean faces were made of granite. If they could hit as hard as their faces looked, they’d break a chopper in half a punch. The metal would buckle out of fear. Inside the rear chopper, I was able to make out the front of a small tank. I saw the tread, the barrel, and the lone star on the front side tread cover. We could hear him speak, and though I knew nothing of what he was saying, I trusted him because as I was lead to believe from everyone around me, the President causes no harm to the country. He only lifts it up, and makes laws that make everything better so we could live peacefully and comfortably. I watched in awe, believing that I was watching the greatest event in the history of my life and those around me. I felt that since he showed up there, we all had something special about us. That moment put a smile on my face and I felt that due to my joy, I could make it through that facility and return home. The joy lasted for about two hours, when real life took over. I thought, “Free world. I wonder how free we are, when we have to do as we’re told and any question is seen as a violation and we get punished. I had no conclusions, but I felt something was wrong.”
After Ronald Reagan, it was some time before I heard of another president. It’s not that none were around; they were. It is simply that at those ages, I was not into politics. My perception of “The Most Powerful Man in the World” was that he is simply for the people and was just infallible. My belief with nothing to support it was that to be in control of a whole country, that person would have to fit standards higher than any person within that country, if not the whole world. I thought the president would have to have perfect grades, know any and everything of history, and current world events so that nothing bad would ever get repeated, and that the people of his country would have a reason to regale him with great reverence. I knew nothing, and at the time, knew I knew nothing of it, so I had only my trust in what others told me, or what the news reported, was true.
The next President I heard of was George H. Bush. For the first time, I heard small talk on the news about Democrats versus Republicans. To me, I was just lost, as I had no idea of why that would matter when selecting a leader of the country. To me, the leader isn’t on anyone’s side but the country’s. I didn’t understand, but I also didn’t care. The only thing I knew about him at the time, was that he sent U.S. troops into Kuwait to help a country under siege. U.S. troops went in with so much show-of-force, that the enemy surrendered too fast for U.S. troops to process it. I felt the president did his job since he helped others in need, and made sure their country was not taken over, goes broke, or lose people to a group of killers of any size.
During my times in early grade school from 1st grade to middle school, I learned about cliques, popularity scaling, how people will agree or disagree with someone based on their popularity, or if they find them attractive or unattractive. There are other factors such as rumors, hearsay, and your placement within the school’s curriculum. I learned about politics on a social level real fast and it never went away. I learned my place amongst my peers and it was not fun at all. Fear, anger, anguish, and defeat was not just at my heels, but walking next to me grinning, reminding me that it’s not over. I never expected it to go into my young adulthood, where nothing changed from any level of schooling.
I didn’t know who Bill Clinton was, but I kept confusing his name with George Clinton, and I knew that our president would not be the leader of P-Funk; wearing wild 70’s and 80’s stage uniforms. The back and forth of Democrats arguing with Republicans filled the air during the General Election. I was told that the General Election was the only cote that mattered, and if I was smart, I’d vote for Democrat when the time came. I was asked if I’d vote, but no one told me how. Very slow internet, no content on anyone running, and no information on how to register, where to register, reasons for voting for any side, and more. I was still under the impression, that our leader, and state leaders were of neither party, because they are working for the people and if there was any competition, it would be which state or county is doing the best.
The rhetoric on the news was an unending bash against Democrats. This was FoxNews. I didn’t even know what channel it was on. I’d click the buttons and see a headline such as, “House Dems Break Record on Job Loss” and I’d just listen. The information fed was that Democrats have given so much free stuff to the people that businesses were shutting down in record numbers because they can no longer afford to pay their employees. There were talks of Dems causing chaos “on the floor” and blocking Reps. I was thinking, “Damn. Dems sound messed up. How can someone recognize a Dem from a Rep? Yes, as a young adult, I was still trying to figure things out. When it comes to things I don’t understand, I take most information literally. Did Dems wear blue ties only? Did Reps wear red? What if you are neither? What do you wear? Is there a clear tie? I had no clue that later, clear heels would become popular. I was with my woman at the time, and neither of us really cared about either side. We knew were powerless in our own lives, so having an effect on who becomes President was beyond our mental reach. Besides, to me, I could not look at Bill Clinton and see what he was. To me, he was a nice guy, had a family, so it makes sense he’d care about other families across the board. Surely he’d care about jobs. Anything I ever saw of him on the news was not a speech, but just him waving, giving a thumb up, and hugging Hillary. Was I ready to know things? Yes. The problem is being taught properly, being told the truth, and given the freedom to choose. These are things I was denied in many areas of my life. Going on my life, since Bill Clinton seemed to be hated so much by FoxNews, he must be doing something right. He had my support, but not my vote. I didn’t know how to vote.
During President Clintons’ terms in office, I didn’t know what to think about him or anyone else. He’s the leader, it’s done, shut up and deal and nothing will change. If he is honestly going to ruin the country, wouldn’t that ruin him as well? So it was logical to me, that he’s in favor of the country prospering. Then the whole Monica Lewinsky thing started. Reps hated him with a passion only found in Latino drama shows. I was highly confused at why they would impeach him. In fact, it was the first time I heard that term. It was years before I knew what it was. Still, back then, I could not find what the rage was all about. People around me were cheating on their woman. They bragged about it. I’ve seen hundreds of movies and TV shows where men and women were cheated on. My honest thought was, “The President of the United States, and he is to represent the people of said country. He cheating just shows he’s representing properly.” I was a minority in my miniscule groups of friends. I didn’t cheat. I told them, that I won’t cover for them either. I told them not to rely on me to help this be dishonorable. I did cover for one friend because his woman, who never spoke to me, called me a derogatory expletive, so I covered to spite her. I covered the hell out of him. He was cheating and needed help, and so I helped. I admit he cheated up, so if anything, going her looks, it was physically worth it for him. I had to wonder, “Why didn’t anyone cover for Bill? Who did he piss off? Besides, it’s not our business. That’s him and his wife’s business. I heard faintly over time that who your vote for matters. I did not understand that until President Clinton served his time and “W” came into office.
A part of politics is social pressure, a desire to fit in and be a part of something. My friends collected sports cards. They had much to talk about and I had nothing. Sitting alone for 40 minutes while they talk about cards and compare them was not fun. So I began collecting. I amassed over 2,000 cards. They were all worth from $2,000 to $6,000. It was just 6 months after he took office and jobs became scarce. I wasn’t really looking, but when I did it was not easy. Money was something I never thought about. I did then, though I fully didn’t need any as I lived with my parents with my woman. I wanted to trade in my cards to get some cash until I could find a job. I was going to turn them all in, and try to find a way to place some money in bonds or something I heard about back then. The price of the cards depended heavily on where I was turning them. I went to every card store I could find and look up in the phone book. The price of my cards; all of my cards were at best $13. I was pissed to say the least. This was after “W” got into office and he ruined my investment. I was stunned. Everyone was turning in their cards as the market was slowly crashing and then the trade towers were hit. We all first heard Osama did it, but quickly, within a week, it was changed to Sadam. I was confused but didn’t hold onto it since there was nothing I could do about it. I just knew not to trust him. No one liked him, or trusted him during the General Election. Jobs were fading fast, the military kept getting money, and that was the trend. Each time I heard about jobs being lost, I would hear about the “house” passing legislation (without a challenge) to send more money to the military to fight terrorism. After 4 months of terrorism, I was bored with it, bored with “W” and bored with politics. I just knew, if I had the option to not vote, I’d not vote for a Bush.
During “W’s” terms, we found CNN and at the time, they learned towards the Dems and reporting on what is seen, while questioning the establishment. That is what it seemed like. On Current TV, I found Lou Dobbs who spoke against the Reps. Still, I was not very sure of what side was what. No TV show was talking about what made each side different. Both sides blamed the other for everything. The Dems gave everything away, while the Reps filibustered, and I had no clue of what that was. Then, I asked my woman, “What’s the difference between the two?” It was explained simply, and from what I could gather then, all she knew, and what I can gather now, what any person would say in our demographic. “If you don’t make much money and want lower taxes, vote for Democrats. If you’re rich, and want lower taxes, you’ll vote Republican.” I asked this as “W’s” first term was coming to an end.
During this time, CNN did report on results of every poll, but never explained the point of it. I was ready to find a way to vote and make sure “W” wasn’t reelected. Then on all news stations, they hammered the airwaves with, “No wartime president ever lost a reelection.” I remember their polls being against “W” until they kept repeating that, and suddenly, the numbers slowly changed more into his favor and I didn’t even bother going out. Then followed the so-called scandal of how “W” won the first election and the second with dead people voting, and millions of “lower-income” voters being turned away, or kept in long lines until the booths shutdown. I was stunned at it and then learned of Dog-Whistle politics on Current TV’s “The Young Turks”. Cenk Uygur was highly aggressive in getting his point across. He was passionate about everything he went over. Plus, I enjoyed the opening, “It’s-Cenk-Uygur-of-The-Young-Turks – and we got a crazy show for you today! Go!” I knew nothing of what they were reporting on, but one thing I learned fast, was they jumped on Dem and Reps equally and I could trust that. No loyalty, no boundaries, and only the truth, while holding the words of anyone accountable. I had heard of them on FoxNews once, and MSNBC. TYT was labeled an “Onion” show; once of comedy, not real reporting but great entertainment if you enjoy laughing. I saw their title on Current TV on the preview guide, but didn’t turn to them because I listened to the wrong people instead of my own curiosity. I was annoyed that I listened to people who didn’t have any of my interests ”
at heart”. How can you say you report for the people and then lie about something like that? So I didn’t even look at FoxNews and told my mom to stop watching them. She claimed, “I can’t stand Bill O’Reilly’s racist-self” while she watched him. I asked, “Then why are you watching him, then?” Her retort was, “Because ain’t nothing else on.”
They saying playing videos is EVIL, and for THE DEVIL, and CAUSES VIOLENCE, and yet, I met the best guy friend I have ever had, and he helped explain politics, reasoning, and who religion plays a negative and powerful part in it, and our lives. He had me take political compass tests, religious compass tests, and eventually, we spoke on the phone where more became clear. He didn’t like either party system, and informed us on how having two-parties is crooked and against the constitution. He was real with everything, and was an extreme I could just not get behind. He described himself as one for anarcho syndicalism. He is far to the left, past the rim. I could not be that far. However, knowing how far he needs to go, allowed me to know how far I could go. Though “W” won again, and the game came and went, and another, I did play a game using Teamspeak and that taught me something very important about politics. Leaders are usually bullies, enjoy their power, and when called out on it, will bury you as deep as they can. It also taught me, that the leaders have that much power, because their followers will not strongly voice their grievances. They knew their leaders were just corrupt. They spoke on it, and while some left, or changed sides to fight their former leaders and friends, the leaders ignored it and just recruited more. They spoke about low numbers, low morale, and lack of trainers, while not once looking into the mirror. Respect for their followers, were not a part of their agenda. That is what I began to see from “W” to President Obama.
During the Primaries, it came down to Obama and Hillary. I was ready to vote for Clinton after “W” was done, and I was a full Democrat. Loyal to the core I was. Guys had control since the start, and now, let a woman do it. When she lost Wisconsin, she called them, “A bunch of cheese sucking idiots.” I was not going to vote for someone that insults people just because she didn’t get every single vote in her favor. Obama wasn’t insulting anyone. They both had strong symbolism to me. That was not outweighed by the main fact that they were Democrats, and by any means, we do not need another Republican. I never thought a Dem would insult the very people for something so meek. She lost by a little bit and was irate. Obama was just chill, not even retorting on anything, smiling, and laughing with the people. I didn’t even know I could vote in the Primaries. I thought that was something the government did, and then we vote for the final candidates a.k.a. voting for your side. I questioned, “What if you’re a Dem and don’t want to vote for a Dem, but a Rep? What then?” No one knew. In some states you had to vote for the party you align yourself with. In others, you can only vote if you have picked a side. In some, you can vote either way, so long as you are registered to vote. I didn’t agree with that at all. Across the board, if you can vote in the U.S., it need not matter your party, so long as you vote for someone. My friend was voting for Obama, so was my woman, and so was I. We all did it because he’s on team blue, and then, we did it because he’s black. I playfully thought, “A black man as president will surely piss off the racists.” I made that joke two times to be exact. I had no clue of how accurate I was.
I knew about racism, and was subjected to it a few times. When I watched TYT online, the Rep rallies were full of hate. “No monkeys in the white house.” “NObama.” “Obama Bin Laden” “Keep our country pure.” were some of the signs people held high. There were dolls of monkeys with nooses around their necks, and pictures of Obama with a bullet hole in his head, and watermelon in his hands. That was just one video. When people hate, they get creative. I was not stunned, shocked, or anything about what I saw. I wasn’t even stunned when those very people said their sign or display was not racist. I laughed when they said they don’t like him because of his policy. When asked what policy, they talked about giving all the social security away to lazy, poor people. Then claimed he used half of it already; before he was even in office. I could go on all day, but it taught me that people are downright stupid, and it’s safer to assume the worst and be appreciative when they are good.
When it came time to vote, I did. Voted for Obama and filled in that oval as perfectly as I could. I made an error with a tiny line protruding. I thought, “Is that a sign?” I was ecstatic. Finally, someone in the house that I know isn’t gonna take anyone’s shit and do what’s right. He started off strong and within his second month, I predicted he’s going to start fucking up. I was right. He did some good to great things, but it was a trade off. It was as if someone builds you a home in a nice place that you find most lovely. Then, they sell the property right next to you to a company drilling for oil; keeping you up at night from the noise. He reminded me of how life was with my friend as a kid. They’d never invite me, or think to invite me somewhere, and then, when I see them, they say, “Man you should have been there,” and end their regale to me with, “I wish you had came. You would’ve liked it.”
When the Republicans had hot microphones, and swore to undermine everything Obama wanted, I was happy. Finally, the racism could not be contained and they are going to prison for treason. I knew it was going to happen. When Obama said or did nothing about it, I knew where he stood. I dubbed him a Republican and he scorned me. He owed people to fight harder than anyone other president, to uphold his campaign rhetoric. My woman simply passed him off as a politician and she was done with him. Our friend was still on his bandwagon as some of the good things Obama did, they benefited from. I have as well. I saw being happy about him no differently than being happy about an overdraft fee. Yes, your bank gave you place to hold your money, but they keep taking it from you instead of helping you make more or leveling off. The TV show “House” did it best. A patient had some kind of autoimmune disease that House figured out fast and prescribed treatment. The person said, “Thank god.” House retorted, “Why thank him? He’s the one that did this to you.”
The country was fed up with Reps ruining everything, and then Obama comes in, and instead of upholding his promise, he gives billions to corporations, and bails out the banks, while everyone else suffered financially. People were losing homes left and right, jobs were shipped overseas leaving people with nothing here, and while Reps brazenly expressed nothing shy of utter treason with their filibusters, and hate speech against him, even attacking his health plan that Mitt Romney used for his state. Obama did nothing against it. Furious and brokenhearted, was I.
I was lost politically. I stopped trusting Dems as they did not fight for Obama nearly half as much as they fought for Clinton, and Obama was not inside of a scandal. How can the pro-black, pro-minority, pro-jobs, pro-civil rights group just not support him, come out and retort the Reps or say something positive about Obama when confronted? Then, the Dems began doing Rep things by not fighting them at all. How can you be the house majority, and when you win a vote by more than 20 points, accept defeat and not pass your bill? I refuse to be loyal to a body that can’t even be loyal to its own self. I learned later, that not all was what I thought.
I am registered Dem, and lost my care about them. The Reps committed treason and not only did Obama stand for it, but his house supports didn’t support him. Obama told the nation he can’t do it alone, and we have to help. Like the leader-from-the-back he is, he didn’t explain how we could help him, help us. He didn’t fight for any ideals on his campaign trail, and was doing nothing less than backroom deals. I gave up on the Democrats, and I sure as hell was not going to the party that hates me. I am nothing like Ben Carson, Herman Cain, or any black person that shows up on FoxNews. I stay true to me, not to them. But who am I? If not Dem, not Rep and not Indi, then what?
TYT had reported what they were for a long time but I never thought about their stance’s given name. I watched a video called; “The Real History of Slavery” and that video added some things not only to my religious views, but of black people and their religious views, and how and why they vote as they do. That video lead me to “Oliver Stone’s The Untold History of the United States”. That taught me a ton of things you won’t learn anywhere else, at least not in the same book and not spelled out for you. I learned about Henry A. Wallace and how the corporate and racist Democrats forced him out, and shoved Harry Truman into Vice President; what was nearly more important than the President at that time before the party switch in the early 70’s. Learning of Wallace’s stances, ideology, and principles made me proud to call myself a Progressive. At that point, I was only listening to people that fit the surface of Henry A. Wallace. If they can’t fit the superficial beliefs of him, then I have no time to listen to them. I was done with both sides not doing anything for the people. Everything they wanted to do was take effect in 5 to 16 years, but when they want to give hundreds of millions of dollars of civilian money to corporations, it is done without our knowledge and swiftly; within hours or days.
Listening to TYT, I already knew I’d never fully agree with anything they all had to say. I accept that. They for the grand part, behold a lot of my ideals, and those that I was not sure of, or never thought about, became subjects and thus, gave me things to think about. Some ideals of mine have changed or are in endless conflict due to my own brand of justice. As more and more came out about Dems and Reps and Obama’s need to serve the Reps more than the people, I wanted everyone to know how much of a fraud and liar Obama was. It was personal, and an extreme small amount was about me.
As the 2016 Primaries began, I latched on fast to Larry Lessig who wanted money out of politics, and once that objective was complete, he would step down as President. He was serious, and I liked it. The DNC, headed by a former Hillary Clinton staff member, aided in ruining Lessig’s chances of being heard by the public in a debate against Hillary and other few Democratic candidates for President. He was running so he should be heard just like anyone else running. It’s the right thing to do. They told him to get 3% of the vote and for some reason raise one-million dollars. Larry Lessig did just that, and was still turned away from the debate. After him, it was Bernie Sanders who called himself a Democratic Socialist, and on purpose. I didn’t know Bernie, but I knew I didn’t trust Hillary. She announced she was running for President and then did not talk to the people, but held functions for big donors. She had nothing to say until Bernie showed up and his numbers rose swiftly. Anything he said, she repeated as her own and bolstered that she would go further. I was not with her and for some reason, expected others to take notice as well.
The media preached that Bernie was not experienced, that Hillary was already slated to win with the majority of super delegates on her side, and the people just believed it. What was happening to Bernie is what happened to Henry A. Wallace. The difference is Wallace was pushed back to talking from a radio, reaching only a few hundred people, while Bernie had a fallowing of TYT supporters, and even a scant few Reps. TYT taught about Bernie and his 40 years in politics, and before. Bernie sits on the right side of every single issue in the country and yet, people didn’t vote for him. Even though people voted for Hillary and regret it, they are so broken, they rather vote for her again, than vote for Bernie by writing his name in, or helping him at the contested convention. I am Progressive and my views will not match half the people out there, and mayhap none of the people I meet online, but my views are mine own, and I will no longer vote for Dem or Rep what is really the Corporate Party, versus the Green Party, Libertarian Party and the Progressive Party. The progressive party thus far, sits with my ideals. People need to change. Go with the party that supports you, and not the party you are told to go with, or you feel you must identify yourself with. This is your life, your only life. Live it for you, and not everything that you identify with. Make it identify with you, and if you can, do it progressively.