This Ain’t No Party

And this isn’t really time to be throwing one anyway…

Michelle Obama headlines first night of Democratic National Convention (click on the photo to watch)

Look, we won’t spend a whole lot of time on the unusualness of the first night of the Democratic National Convention, because a lot of people who are much wiser than us already are.

Just that, virtual is good.

And people giving speeches without live audiences is just fine. Boy, did we so not miss the spectacle and balloons and confetti and funny outfits and every single speech repeatedly interrupted and painfully drawn out. As well as the ridiculous often over-the-top many-pundit-panel instant analysis to every speech made, because there also weren’t as many natural breaks in the action to provide for that. (We were watching it on C-SPAN, and when we quickly switched over to a more conventional news channel, it seemed like they might have been doing a little more of that, but still not that much.) To the point at which while we understood why the event’s producers made an (awkward) attempt to bring in some (also virtual) reaction and applause, that also was unnecessary. (Though maybe there is a point to reminding people to be enthusiastic.)

And also, all the people involved seemed refreshingly sincere. From a nurse, to a farmer, to Bernie Sanders (in front of a wood pile for some reason) clearly laying out some of Biden’s policies and making a case for why while they might not match exactly what Progressives want, they’re on the right track enough to make it worthwhile to vote for the former Vice-President.

Bernie Sanders makes his case for voting for Joe Biden

And more importantly, it made a stark message clear (whether intentional or not): the people of this country have to get to work if they want to change the President. Now. They’ve got to be determined. Don’t need people on TV jumping up and down. Just muster some resolve on their own, in their own living rooms and apartments. Make a plan to vote. Make sure your friends and neighbors have a plan to vote. Nothing’s going to be easy. But it’s also not as impossible as Trump is trying to make it (at least for voters who are not inclined to vote for him). That’s not to say there isn’t plenty of help out there should you encounter hurdles, regardless of whom your planning to vote for. There is the non-partisan voting website from the National Association of Secretaries of State; there’s VoteRiders, just to name two we like (and that aren’t trying to “sell” you on any particular candidate).

That point was most forcefully made by Michelle Obama—in her brilliant speech (which we’re giving you a link to here): who urged people time and time again, in every way she could, simply to vote.

We know that what’s going on in this country is just not right. This is not who we want to be.”

And it’s why, when she says:

We have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.”

We wish she’d added:

Because they do.”

Though that exact point, tragically, was driven home by an equally personal message from Kristin Urquiza, who describes herself as a “normal person”, whose Trump supporter dad died from COVID-19. She says:

His only pre-existing condition was trusting Donald Trump, and for that he paid with his life.”

Here’s that:

Click on photo to watch.