To Democrats in Response to Invitation

Note from our county’s democratic party organization:

HELLO Stephan!

We are writing to you because you were a Bernie Sanders Delegate/Alternate to the Washoe County Democratic Convention!

REMEMBER how it felt to be INSPIRED and INVOLVED?

REMEMBER Bernie Sanders saying “Real change never occurs from the top down, but always from the bottom on up”?

My hurried note back:

The Washoe County Democratic Party will be holding elections in April and true progressives are running for leadership roles in the party. We are about being inclusive, transparent and allowing YOUR VOICE! This is the beginning of the change that Bernie was talking about and NOW is your chance to get involved and create that change.

As the note you sent me indicated, I was a supporter of Bernie Sanders and a delegate to the state convention.  My experience at the convention was, to say the least, terrible and it was terrible because of the arrogance of the convention committee and the Hilary surrogates—Barbara Boxer being the main distraction—who made ever move possible to convince people such as myself to shut up and be counted, counted for a candidate who ended up losing an election that should never have been lost.  Arrogance on the part of the party elite—at all levels of the party—destroyed the party as a viable voice for liberal perspectives in American politics.  At that convention we were not only derided for our choice of candidate but defamed before the American public for what party leaders told the press was uncivil behavior during the event.  The party “leaders” even went so far as to make sure the national press could label those of us protesting a rigged nomination process violent.  I left the convention angry, very angry and now, after the party has brought about the worst political disaster in the history of the nation, I feel I do not want to support an organization that serves none of the political purposes for which I gave my support when a democrat.


I have no party affiliation now because of what the democratic party, at the state and national level, have done to deprive true liberals of a place in the political process.  Trump is beyond terrible but the democratic party really does not offer a viable alternative, the presidential candidate who lost as conservative on important issues—THE MAIN POLITICAL ISSUES—as that group that was being called mainstream republicans and much worse in effect that those nominally sane republicans because it co-opted liberalism to make it, the party, seem to be something it was not, the pro-the-people option.  What I experienced was a few well connected, many rich, individuals forming a cabal that thought it could win over those concerned with the rights of the people by being just a little more concerned about most of the people than those in the other party.  Hell, the candidate for president is known to have ties to the Trump family and to be enamored with that most anti-democratic of people, the man responsible for destroying many a democracy for the sake of American corporate interests, Henry Kissinger.


So, you are no longer my party and not even my friends because friends listen to one another and party membership should mean a voice in party decisions.  It is documented that the democratic party used undemocratic practices to find its nominee and that nominee lost to the worst candidate in the history of the nation.  So, you tell me why one such as myself, who tried to be civil until treated with incredible disrespect and who, along with many other good people, had their reputations tarnish by your process, should want to participate in party activities.  I do need a party and there is not one that supports any kind of truly liberal, truly progressive agenda.  I thought that participating as I did in the nominating process might allow my voice to be heard.  Every time I attempted to speak or that someone with ideas for democracy similar to mine tried to speak we were not only told to listen to our superiors but to be quiet for the damage our honest speech might do to party prerogatives.  As a result, I came to dislike the party and its leadership and to feel that the democratic party, as manifest in 2016, was a threat to democracy.


Maybe you wish to talk to people like myself now?  Perhaps you can convince people like me that you are sincere in your desire to make amends for the terrible behavior you displayed, for the bullying in which you engaged to make sure that your terrible candidate got the nomination and then did the impossible and threw the election to another kind of bully, worse maybe than the democratic party bullies, but one of a species of beings who want things their way even if there exist good argument against what they wish to do.  Bullies do not listen.  They intimidate, they smear, they act superior and use their power to prove they are superior.  This is bullshit, of the worst kind.  So, maybe, because no other alternative exists, party-wise that is, than yours, maybe I can find reason to come back and try again to participate in a meaningful manner, as a respected member of a community of people who want something more than adulation, something more than rank, something more than self-aggrandizement, people who really do care that all are able in a democratic society to lead decent lives, their needs and their ideas important elements in the conversation by which community decisions are made.


I sincerely hope that there is reason to keep my hope alive that there can and will exist a good and effective alternative to the autocracy that is developing, an alterative that is truly by and of and for the people, something better than the neoliberal force that the democratic party has become, a party run by rich and comfortable people for the sake of insuring their continued wealth and comfort while providing them with a false sense of goodness and righteousness through their advocacy for a few selected policies that help others but never at the expense of what they have come to have by way of the very economic system that got them what they have, so often at the expense of those who continue to have relatively little.

By lafered

Retired professor of education concerned with thoughtfulness

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