picture of Rev. Pauli Murray seated in front of a Magnolia tree.

Make Pauli Murphy’s Childhood Home a US National Landmark

Did you know that there are very few National Landmark, National Monument, National Park or other official recognitions of the accomplishments of women? According to the list gathered by Wikipedia, the National Park Service has 11 national parks and 47 national landmarks recognizing specific women. An additional 53 sites include information on one or more women’s contributions to our history.  That is out of a total of 413 sites managed by the Park Service – national parks, monuments, battlefields, military parks, historical parks, historic sites, lakeshores, seashores, recreation areas, scenic rivers and trails, and the White House. That means that just under one-quarter of all of the parks recognize women in general and just 14% focus on the accomplishments of a specific woman.

We can do better.  And there’s a chance right now for you to make this happen.  The National Trust for Historic Preservation is lobbying the National Park Service to designate Rev. Pauli Murray’s  childhood home in Durham, North Carolina as a National Landmark.

sepia-toned photo of Pauli Murray's childhood home.

Childhood home of Pauli Murray. It was built by her grandfather Robert Fitzgerald in 1910. Photo courtesy of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliff Institute, Harvard University.

Who was she?  Born in 1910 and died in 1986, Murray was a

  • Teacher
  • Civil Rights Activist from the 1930’s to the end of her life. She worked with Philip RandolphBayard Rustin and Martin Luther King in the Civil Rights Movement but became critical of the male domination of the leadership within the movement.  She first expressed this frustration in 1963 in a letter to Randolph, saying, “[I’ve] “been increasingly perturbed over the blatant disparity between the major role which Negro women have played and are playing in the crucial grass-roots levels of our struggle and the minor role of leadership they have been assigned in the national policy-making decisions.” Three years later, she became one of the founding members of the National Organization for Women.
  • Life-long friend of Eleanor Roosevelt. One author has called Murray Eleanor Roosevelt’s “Beloved Radical.” In 1952, for example, Murray lost a position at Cornell University’s Law School because her three references – Eleanor Roosevelt, Thurgood Marshall, and Philip Randolph – were considered to be too radical and by inference, so was she.
  • Lawyer.
  • Writer. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall described her 1951 book States’ Laws on Race and Color as the “Bible for civil rights lawyers.”
  • Priest. In fact, she was the first African-American woman to become a priest. That was in 1977.
picture of Rev. Pauli Murray seated in front of a Magnolia tree.

Reverend Pauli Murray in 1978. Photo Courtesy of the Pauli Murray Papers, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University

If you want to join the National Trust and help get the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice designated as  National Landmark honoring Pauli Murray, please sign this petition before Tuesday, October 18, 2016. That’s the day the National Park Service meets and is likely to make this decision.

Thank you!

Why I’m Voting for the Women this Fall

Vote Local PA logo

Vote Local. In my case, from top to bottom, this year it’s mostly women!

The idea of having a man who, at minimum, disparages women and people of color, in his campaign for the White House is discombobulating. And dangerous to our society.  I am one of many (in all likelihood the majority of voters) who will not be voting or supporting Donald Trump in November.

Why? I don’t want a racist and sexist despot in the White House.

In a blog on Nel’s  New Day called Trump Loses with Blacks, Women; Nel points out some of the inner workings of Trump— the man, his campaign, and the “can of worms” that his potential leadership of this country could bring forth.

What particularly strikes me in this expose is Donald Trump’s retrograde idea of parenting and women’s “place” in life.  Among these is his idea that parenting is solely the responsibility of women.  His parental leave policy not only is discriminatory towards men, it’s minimalist in its depth and would result in an expanding economic disparity between educated white men and just about everyone else.

As Rebecca Traister reports in her 2015 article in the New Republic, a lack of federal policies supporting paid parental leave for both men and women hurts individual families as well as our society.  She also points out that sexist maternity leave policies result in increasing disparity among our citizenry.  She says:

“The United States and its corporate structures were built with one kind of worker—frankly, with one kind of citizen—in mind. That citizen wage-earner was a white man. That this weakness is being addressed by employers faster than it is being addressed by Congress contributes to the widening of the class chasm. Policies that account for the fact that women now give birth and earn wages on which their families depend—and, for that matter, that men now earn wages and provide childcare on which their families depend—should not be crafted by individual bosses or corporations on a piecemeal basis that inevitably favors already privileged populations. They should be available to every American. But until we see a large-scale, national refashioning of family leave, the economic fates of childbearers will be left in the hands of the private entities that employ them.”

Definitely not Trump’s view of America.  But it is mine.

We need a person in the White House and people in Congress who believe in a compassionate and caring family-friendly workplace and community.  We need people who will craft a strong and national egalitarian family leave policy for all.  For women. For men. For LGBTQIA people. For single as well as married parents and adult caregivers.  And for people regardless of color or source and amount of income.

So in November, I will vote for people  running for policy-making positions who can fit this bill.  Here in PA, they are all women – a first for me.  That’s Hilary Rodham Clinton for President, Katie McGinty for the US Senate, and Kerith Strano Taylor for Pennsylvania’s 5th Congressional District. And at the state level, it’s Melody Fleck for the 171st PA House District  (the same seat I ran for in 2008 when I was the only woman on my ballot that year).

Hey Pennsylvania: Rock Out for Abortion Rights this Saturday 9/10           

Women's Law Project Blog

This Saturday, more than 30 cities across the country, including Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, are hosting events as part of All Access, a series of concerts and conversations about unequal access to abortion in America.

all-access-logo

This is the deal: Women’s healthcare is in a preventable crisis in the United States. In the last five years, hundreds of abortion bans have been passed into law depriving women all over the country, including in Pennsylvania, of access to healthcare. In short, since anti-choice activists can’t legally criminalize abortion outright, they’re focused on proposing laws that discriminate against low-income women by installing financial and logistical barriers to abortion access.

Equality is not possible without equal access to the full spectrum of reproductive healthcare, including abortion. Racial justice and economic security are not possible without reproductive freedom.

Please join us this Saturday in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh as we rock for abortion access.

All Access:…

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She has Returned

Poetry. How a Bernie Sanders supporter came atound to supporting Hilary Clinton for President of the United States.

Tribe of Dreams

The very first time I heard Bernie Sanders speak, I knew who he was

knew the energy he was representing

knew that he was being fed from the same wellspring of evolving consciousness by which so many of us have been being fed lately on this planet.

This wellspring offers the energy of community

fellowship

kinship

unity

wellness.

It offers the energy of equality

equanimity

truth

justice.

It offers the energy of love.

In a civilization that values profit about all else

this energy becomes revolutionary

but it is not by nature.

By nature, this energy is evolutionary.

There is only so long that we can continue to stumble blindly upon the Earth

eating her up faster than she can feed us

and creating so much suffering for ourselves, our kin in the community of life, and our future generations.

So it is not only unsurprising,

but also necessary

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Women’s Vote Can Change the World

Today is Women’s Equality Day. This blog says it all. Women’s history. Voting Rights. And the Equal Rights Amendment which states:

Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

 

Ninety-six years ago today, women won the right to vote with the addition of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution. It’s now time for full equality. Women rights must be added to the US Constitution. Pass and ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.

Nel's New Day

Pickets-Women-White-HouseMy mother was born on November 12, 1899, just ten days too late to vote the United States legalized the vote for women. After 72 years of ridicule, imprisonment, forced feedings, and other forms of opposition to women gaining their full citizenship rights, the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution passed on August 18, 1920—thanks to one state legislator from Tennessee who followed his mother’s advice. Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed the proclamation after the certified record from Tennessee arrived at the capitol.

it's a woman's worldIn the first election, only nine million women, about 35 percent of those eligible, voted, compared to almost twice as many men. Public sentiment followed one of the headlines about the event: “Is suffrage a failure?” For the next 45 years, black women in the South joined black men to eliminate literacy tests, poll tests, and other voter suppression activities. Since 1980, however, women…

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Report on Racial Bias in Baltimore Policing Also Exposes Gender Bias

In Baltimore, the Justice Department criticized the police for not only their treatment of black men, but also for their maltreatment of women. Especially women who had been sexually assaulted. What they said to victims and how they dismissed or minimized the assaults shows what appears, IMHO, to be an ingrained sense of misogyny and a general belief in victim blaming surrounding rape.

Central Oregon Coast NOW

AUG. 11, 2016

WOMEN1-master768 Vanita Gupta, the Justice Department’s top civil rights official, described “gender-biased policing” in Baltimore. Credit Gabriella Demczuk for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — For the past two years, ever since 18-year-old Michael Brown was fatally shot by a Ferguson, Mo., police officer, America has been enmeshed in a wrenching discussion about how the police treat young black men.

But this week’s blistering report from the Justice Department on police bias in Baltimore also exposed a different, though related, concern: how the police in that majority-black city treat women, especially victims of sexual assault.

In six pages of the 163-page report documenting how Baltimore police officers have systematically violated the rights of African-Americans, the Justice Department also painted a picture of a police culture deeply dismissive of sexual assault victims and hostile toward prostitutes and transgender people. It branded the…

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#DNCinPHL:Day 5 2nd attempt


Something just happened to my draft blog. I just lost everything  from 10 am until 6:30 pm. I’ll post the pictures I took later but all of the text is gone!

This morning,  my credentials were once again unavailable.  Mitch Kates, PA’s Political Director of the Pa Democratic Party, once again scrambled and found a delegate pass for me by 12:30 today;  I picked it up and headed to  the Wells Fargo Center at 2 pm.

On the Convention Floor

So first, I just got a selfie with Madeline Albright!

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Madeline Albright and me!

These are not all of the speakers,  just highlights of the ones that started speaking after 6:30 pm. To make sure I don’t lose this again, I’m  publishing this as I add new content. So please keep coming back.  Thanks.

The Women of the US Senate 

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Madeline Albright and me!

  • Barbara Mikulski – MD.  I was the first. I wanted to have more  to have our voices heard. One of them was Hillary Clinton.
  • Patty Murray – WA. Hillary and the Senate women are calling upon the FDA to make decisions based on science,  not politics.
  • Debbie  Stabenow -MI. I was with her in Bejing when she said,  “Women’s Rights ate Human Rights  and Human Rights  are Women’s Rights.”
  • Maria Cantwell – WA. Hillary is for paid sick leave
  • Amy Klobachar — MN. It was too noisy to hear what she said.
  • Claire McCaskill –MO. She was with me when I was getting cancer treatment
  • Jeanne Saheen — NH. It was again too noisy to hear what she said.
  • Kiesten Gillibrand  -NY. Hillary believes that if you don’t stand up and fight,  who else will? She’s  continuing to stand and fight.
  • Tammy Baldwin – MO. I am a strong advocate for healthcare and healthy families.  So is Hillary.
  • Mazie K. Hirino – HI.  I’m an immigrant.  She understands us and our families
  • Elizabeth  Warren – MA. Hillary  knows how to fight back against dangerous bullies. Śhe fights back
  • Barbara Boxer -CA. We worked together on the environment. And when Ground Zero occurred,  she made sure they (first responders) got the care they needed. And when Super Storm Sandy hit,  she reached out to the people who were affected.  We as the women of the Senate therefore stand with Hillary. 

Andrew Cuomo

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He is the Governor of New York. He eloquently talked about coming together as one. “E Pluribus Unum.” United, we are one.

Nancy Pelosi

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We must be smart and strong.

  • For the sake of the 90+ people killed each day, we must break the NRA gridlock.
  • We need to have Economic  Justice – equal pay for equal work and paid sick leave.
  • The future of America needs to be decided by the voters, not by the monied. Overturn Citizens United.
  • Everyone should pay their fair share.

Onward to victory!

Due to a low battery, I’m temporarily signing off until Chelsea and Hillary come on and will attempt to recharge.  Back in a bit.

I’m  back.

Chelsea Clinton

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Madeline Albright and me!

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Chelsea Clinton, All Grown Up!

Our daughter Charlotte, is 2 years old and she just loves face-time with Grandma. Our son Aden is 5.5 weeks old.

Whenever Mom was away for awhile [when I was a kid],  she left dated messages  for me. I treasured then.  At dinner, they’d listen to me first. They cared about my thoughts.  That feeling of being valued is the calling of my mother’s life for everyone .

Another thing she taught me is that public service is about service.

I saw her fight for universal health care. We all know she failed. But she still felt she could make a difference and got back to work.  Because she never forgets who she’s working for.

  • For first responders
  • For women around the world to be safe.
  • For all in need.

She has a heart full of love.  She’s spent her entire life for us.

She knows that

  • Women’s Rights are Human Rights
  • LGBT  Rights are Human Rights

So everyone watching, she’ll  make us all proud as the nectar president of the US.

And here she is!

Hillary Rodham Clinton 

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Madeline Albright and me!

Picture of Hillary Clinton with herbhand over her heart as a thank you gesture

Hillary Clinton

Picture of Hillary Clinton pointing at someone

Hillary Clinton

Picture of Hillary Clinton with her arm taised in victory

Hillary Clinton

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Madeline Albright and me!

Thank you Chelsea for becoming the woman you’ve become.
On Tuesday night I was glad to  see my Explainer-in-Chief was still explaining.  We have  heard both from the man from Hope – Bill and from the man of Hope – Barack Obama.

I want to thank Bernie Sanders.  Bernie inspired millions of Americans, particularly millennials. Your focus on economic justice. We wrote the progressive platform together; let’s make it work together.

Our founders embraced the truth that we are stronger together.

Just as with the founders,  it is up to us.  We need to work together in order to grow together.

Donald [Trump] has taken the Republican party  from Morning in America  to Midnight in America. FDR said it best.  “We have nothing to fear but fear itself. ”

[As Democrats,]

  • We will not ban any religion.
  • We have the most tolerant and generous young people in the work
  • Freedom, Justice, and Opportunity.  We should be most proud of these words and ideeas.

Don’t believe anyone who says “I alone can fix ít.” Those words are dangerous.  Hasn’t he [Donald Trump] forgotten our  troups, our first responders, our teachers, our police, our entrepreneurs…?

Twenty years ago I  wrote “It Takes a Village.” Working together is what I  mean by a village.

My father worked in  Scranton for 40 years. My mother told me to do whatever you can do for however long you can. She taught me  that you have to change both hearts and laws.  Like, every child with a disability has a right to go to school. We changed our laws to make this happen.

I focus on policy to make these things happen.

Over the last 4 days you’ve met some of the people who inspired me. The child who wore a brace. The first responders who got got sick after 9/11. I will continue carrying your stories to the White House.

I will be the President for call – Democrats, Republicans, Independents.

A barrier has fallen today with the first woman elected as the presidential nominee.

  • I believe that the economy thrives when the middle class thrives.
  • We will pass a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United
  • I believe that Wall Street should never be able to overturn Main Street
  • I believe there is climate change.

If you share these beliefs, this is your campaign. Join us.

If the minimum wage should  be a living wage, Join us.

If you believe in affordable healthcare, Join us.

If you want to expand Social Security,  have equal pay, and protect a women’s right to reproductive healthcare, JOIN US.

Whether it’s a trade job or a college education, we should make this happen.

If doing paid family leave or getting quality child care is dealing the “women’s card”, then deal me in!

Keeping our country safe is important.  So I  support the control of Iran’s nuclear weapons program without a single shot. I support Israel’s right to exist.

Our president should respect the service of all of our servicemen, including Tim Kaine’s and Mike Pence’s sons – both Marines. That’s not true of Trump.

I’m not here to take away your guns.  I just want to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them.  We need common-sense gun laws.

We also need common-sense treatment of people of all races. Let’s give our support to our police to make them safe as well.

We will protect all rights. Civil Rights. Women’s Rights.  Immigrant Rights. Disability Rights. LGBTQ Rights. Veteran’s Rights…

None of us can do it alone. Progress is possible.  I’ve seen it when people who have fallen who get back up. I’ve even done it myself.

We need to stand up to bullies. We’re drawn together  when we work together.

Thank you.

Picture of Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine

Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine

And finally to end the convention, we had the traditional balloon drop. Balloons large and small….

Hope you enjoyed this week as much as I did!

Picture of Joanne Tosti-Vasey watching the balloons drop from the ceiling of the Wells Fargo Center

Yours Truly watching the balloons drop from the ceiling of the Wells Fargo Center.

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#DNCinPHL: Day 4

Yesterday my delegate tickets disappeared.  The PA Dem Party scrambled to find a replacement.  So I  was unable to attend Tuesday morning’s events. This morning, the were able to get me a pass for today and they are working on tomorrow’s pass.

So my first event today is an SEIU “Low Waged and Engaged”panel discussion at Philadelphia  City Hall.

Low Waged and Engaged Panel Discussion

Luis Figueroa was the 1st speaker. He talked about the 64 million low-wage workers. Many, but not all, work in the service sector. Much of SEIU’s work is focused on The Fight for 15 and unionizing. Several questions were asked.

How do you engage low wage workers in politics?

Steve Rosenthal did a PowerPoint commentary.

Picture of a graph showing that low-wage workers are disproportionately concentrated among women blacks and Latinos

Low-wage workers are disproportionately concentrated among women, blacks, and Latinos

Using North Carolina as an example, he noted that low wage workers are less likely to vote.  But when they do vote,  they are more likely to vote Democratic.  The problem is getting them to vote. Reducing their vote via things like voter Id is a Republican focus. Democrats  need to place more focus on low wage workers and not just on the people who donate money.

Shakira Stewart talked about the airport worker’s strike that was supposed to be held during the DNC Convention.  As a result of the politicians coming into town, American Airlines agreed to negotiate and the airport workers called off the strike – a win.

Nelini Stamp talked about what other types of workers are low wage workers and what are their issues.  She talked about unfair work hours and lack of access to Workers Compensation. She then talked about how to assist low-wage workers to be politically engaged.  She said you need to talk about raising the minimum wage and ways to fight for decent and fair hours. And you need to deal with the intersectionality of low wages and race; you need to work with the #BlackLivesMatter actions and look at how the criminal justice system impacts these workers.

Susan Ray was then asked, “How do you change people’s behavior?” Her response was accompanied by another PowerPoint. She said you need to speak to their emotions and…

Statement that says, put yourself in the person's State of Mind... Hone in on why it's important for them rather than on the Union. You might then get people who might have no interest in politics to take action.

General outlook on organizing

Where are they coming from?  Common perspective. ..

Picture of a man making a funny face saying Politics isnt for me. Then a question is asked.

So you need to say personal is political…

Picture of a rally for the Fight for  $15

And make sure the goal looks winnable. And make it fun, inspirational and rewarding .

Picture of people working together.  The words next to the picture says, If its not fun, then it doesnt matter what it is.  No fun or satisfaction , it's not going to work.

Finally..

Text saying, you can't tell people that there is power in numbers... you have to have them feel it . Best to bring them together and have them feel each other's power, to have an uplifting experience.

Q and A followed.

What is the Fight for $15? SEIU says that in some states  it requires state passage. In others it can be done at the town level. So it depends on where you live.

We can focus on the electorate.  How do we deepen the struggle to head into the 2018 elections. Steve Rosenthal talked about  investing resources in communities  so that people are there (boots on the ground); we need to work with allied organizations and to be keep active within communities.

I’ll post this now and keep updating this throughout the day. Keep checking back…

Disability Council

My next session was a seminar on disability. The 1st speaker was Timothy Shriver . His main message was that we need to look at and speak  out about how people with disabilities are talked about. There has been a lot of pushback when we ask people to take down offending material. You need to persist and eventually you can be successful . And that we need to recognize is that everyone has a gift and we need to let the public understand that people with disabilities have a lot to offer. The important fact s ithat we need to get people with disabilities  registered and get them out to vote.

Zack Baldwin from AAPD spoke next. AAPD is a national cross-disability organization  whose mission is to increase the political power of people with disabilities.  Part of their work is to register people and to get media and politicians to talk openly with people with disabilities. To achieve this, they found it helpful to partner with local groups to make sure that access to voting registration and discussions are based on the idiosyncratic differences in each state. Also, it  was helpful for AAPD to get local municipalities to honor and proclaim that National Disabilities Voter Registration Week is important;  this event helps raise the issue that people with disabilities have a right and a need to register and vote. He noted that if people with disabilities voted at the same rate as the general public, then there would have been 12 million more voters in 2012. Check out their Rev Up program here.

The Americans for Democratic Action commemorate the 1948 civil rights flag with representative John Lewis and Representative Keith Ellison

I’ve been waiting for this event all week. It is so full. I ended up in a seat in the hallway outside of the auditorium.

Here’s what the program book says about the 1948 civil rights plank:

At the 1948 convention, the Civil Rights flag was adopted as a Minority Report to the party platform on a highly contested, late night though. The southern delegation strongly opposed to civil rights Plank and some Alabama and Mississippi delegates walked out when it was adopted. Two weeks after the convention, President Harry Truman, whose civil rights program was the basis of the Civil Rights Act, issued executive orders desegregating the military and providing equal opportunity in federal employment. Southern Democrats responded by replacing Truman on the ballot with Governor Strom Thurmond of the States Rights Democratic Party. These “Dixiecrats” carried four states and 39 electoral votes. None the less Truman won the four-way election with 49.55% of the popular vote and 303 electoral votes. The Dixiecrats continued to oppose and black civil rights and Congress through the 1960s.

In the contentious election year of 1948 comma many Democrats and liberals, including Truman’s orders, we’re concerned a strong position on civil rights in danger the Democratic party’s chances of election in the fall. Republicans had won control of the House and Senate in the 1946 midterm election. ADA Founder, Hubert H Humphrey, at the time the 37-year-old mayor of Minneapolis and candidate for US Senate, was convinced to make the case for the Civil Rights Act. Humphrey rose and delivered one of the great convention speeches of all time in support of the plant that affirmed his reputation as a great orator. Some of his most powerful words:

My friends, to those who say that we are rushing this issue of civil rights, I say to them we are one hundred seventy-two years late. To those who say that the civil rights program is an infringement on states rights, I say this: The time has arrived in America for the Democratic party to get out of the shadow of states rights and to walk forthrightly into the bright sunshine of human rights.”

After the late-night adoption of the Civil Rights Plank and the close of the convention in Blue Ball Pennsylvania, Humphrey and the other ADAers retreated to the North Philadelphia home of one of the ADA leaders to celebrate.”

It started about 50 minutes late.The two main speakers are Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) & Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN).

Keith Ellison rates 100% by the ADA, just like John Lewis

Kareem Abdul Jabar was a surprise speaker.  He thanked the Dems & the for their fight for civil rights. He then focused on the need to provide education regardless of gender, color, or orientation.  It is the equalizer from kindergarten through college. We have to reduce the 1.3 trillion dollar debt that students are bearing for higher education. He then thanked Rep. Lewis for his stance on civil rights.

Rep. Ellison then spoke.He summarized the passage of the 1948 Civil Rights plank and Hubert Humphrey’s involvement in this passage. Hubert Humphrey wasn’t concerned about splitting the country; instead, he was concerned about the uniting of the country.  He believed this plank would do that. He showed how Donald Trump is a throwback to the Dixiecrats—touting hate and segregation. He then thanked Bernie Sanders for helping make the 2016 platform the most progressive Democratic platform “ever.” At that point,  he then introduced John Lewis.
Lewis spoke about his history.  About the public library refusing to give him a library card when he was a child; it was almost 40 years later that he got that library card from that same library.

He was proud to say that the segregation signs have been relegated to the history books. But now we are having efforts to bring those signs and behaviors back out on our streets, into our businesses, and  homes. We have to he vigilant and make sure this doesn’t happen.

He then said that voting is the strongest tool for pushback.  We must be the spark plug.  We must be a pilot light for democracy – stay lit and continue to keep democracy alive.

There is no such thing as an illegal human being.  We must respect the dignity and worth of every individual.  Doesn’t matter if we are black, white,  asian, Muslim, gay or straight— we are all one people.

He then told the story of a rainstorm that occured at the shotgun-style house he lived in when he was 4 or 5. They were fearful of the house blowing up because the storm was so strong.  His grandmother then said,  no matter what,  never leave the House. Hold it down, even when the wind blows. And if you do it right,  we can change the world.

THANK YOU JOHN LEWIS for this call to action.

At the Convention 

I have been blogging for the last hour.  Unfortunately  everything since I arrived somehow disappeared when I started taking some pictures. Hoping this doesn’t happen again.  So onward for the evening.

People from acroos the country came on stage to show the world our diversity.

People representing the people of America

People representing the diversity of America

Jessie Jackson then talked. He said we need to ban assault weapons now. The shootings of young black men must stop. Black Lives Matter.  The shootings of police officers must stop. Ban assault weapons now.

The journey for civil rights started in 1948. When women win, women and children win. When Asians win, all races win.  It’s healing time. It’s hope time. It’s Hillary time. It’s healing time. It’s hope time. It’s Hillary time. It’s healing time. It’s hope time. It’s Hillary time. Keep hope alive. Thank you.

Mayor Karen Weaver, Flint Michigan

Mayor Karen Weaver of Flint, Michigan spoke next. Flint is the city that lost control of their water, resulting in lead poisoning of the water. They still can’t drink the water. They expect lifelong problems from this disaster.  Many in Flint have joined Clinton because of her commitment to repairing the infrastructure in Flint and across the country.

The  Congressional Black Caucus  then stood on stage…

I’m  going to have to skip a bit of blogging. My phone is running out of its charge. I’m going to temporarily log off and try to recharge for some of the later speakers…

…I’m now back.

Martin O’Malley

At 7:30, Martin O’Malley spoke, saying that Trump thinks too much of himself.

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Governor Martin O’Malley

Climate Change

Climate change was next on the agenda. Rising food prices.  10 million acres of land burned in wild fires last year. Floods. Drought.  The thermometer isn’t Democratic. It isn’t Republican.  There is climate change.

Picture of the mountains with a home superimposed on top.

Renewable energy is the solution to climate change

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Governor Jerry Brown

Gun Violence

Ending Gun Violence is also important. Lee Daniels said 33K people die each year from gun violence. Enough is enough.

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Lee Daniels

Christine Leinonem, mother of one of the 49 people who died in the Orlando gay bay mass shhotin. She said the weapon that killed her son shoots 33 bullets a minute.  “How is this common gun sense? This is way I support  Hillary (and not Trump).”

 

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Christine Leinonem leaving the stage with three of her son’s friends

Erica Smegielski, the daughter of the Sandy Hook principal who was killed on December 14, 2013. She said that there are too many legislators who stand behind the NRA. What we need are leaders who will stand up to the NRA.  Someone like Hillary.

 

 

Then former Philadelphia Chief of Police Chuck Ramsey called for common-sense gun laws. To stop the murder of citizens. To end the killing of cops. We need good community policing, comprehensive background checks, and a ban on assault weapons. Vote for the person who will work with communities and police. Hillary will help build this bridge and not an [increasingly violent] wall [between the community and the police].

 

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Former Philadelphia Chief of Police Chuck Ramsey

Felicia Sanders and Polly Sheppard are two of the  mothers of shooting victims in Charleston,  SC: In summary, they said, “We choose love. Together we can heal.”wp-image-1520613046jpg.jpg

Felicia Sanders and Polly Sheppard

 

Then we heard from Retired US Navy Captain Mark Kelly. He spoke about common gun sense. Hillary knows we can save lives by keeping gins out of the wetting hands.  Then his wife, former Representive Gabby  Giffords joined him on stage…

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Captain Mark Kelly

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Representative Gabby Giffords

Broadway singers and actors then came on stage to sing “What the World Needs Now is Love Sweet Love” in honor of the victims of gun violence.

And another break to charge some more…

And now it’s Vice President  Joe Biden’s turn…

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Vice-President Joe Biden

He congratulated Michelle Obama for her work and her speech on Monday.  He honored his son Bo Biden who died of cancer a couple of years ago. He then honored

  • Teachers who use their hard-earned money to buy her kids pencils.
  • Hillary for her passions – college education, healthcare, decent pay, elder care

We will all, especially our daughters, be so proud when she walks into the Oval Office.

And Donald Trump?

  • He confuses bluster with defense
  • He belittles everyone
  • He’s dangerous

We have the strongest economy in the world. And if given a chance,  we will endure. We don’t succumb to fear. The 21st century will be the American century because we will empower ourselves and the world for the better!”

Michael Bloomberg

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Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomburg

TIM KAINE

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Vice-Presidential Nominee Tim Kaine

I “humbly accepted” the nomination for the position of Vice President of the United States.

I was the  70th governor of Virginia. Even my father in law, former  Republican  VA governor Holton is voting Democratic more and more often because “the party of Lincoln has moved too far to the right.”

Issues of concern that he raised during his speech:

  • Quality education
  • Investments in transportation and communities
  • Care for our veterans

We must love our neighbors as we love ourselves. So we need to do all you can for others/

Si se puede. Yes we can!

Why do I trust Hillary? She’s consistent.

  • She’s consistently worked for kids and families.
  • She delivers too. She battled the Republicans to get healthcare for 1st responders.
  • She was not afraid to stand up to bullies like Osama Ben Laden
  • I trust Hillary with my son’s life (who deployed overseas two weeks ago).

Even Barbara Bush is troubled about Trump. She said, I don’t know how anyone coud vote for Trump after his comments about women.

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Tim Kaine and his wife, Anne Holton

And finally, President Barack Obama… He was introduced by 80+ year old Sharon Belkofer of Rossford, OH,  a gold-star mom.

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President Barack Obama

President Obama  highlighted his accomplishments over the last 8 years

  • Healthcare is a right. I got the ACA (Affordable Care Act) passed. [My personal opinion on this: The ACA was  a decent start, but we need to go further so that everyone has healthcare and that means single-payer healthcare / Medicare for All]
  • We are working to save this planet for our children.
  • Marriage equality is now real across the land
  • Education has improved

We need to make:

  • Our streets safer
  • Correct the criminal justice system
  • Create equality for all
  • There are pockets of the country that haven’t recovered.  We must do better.

What’s  right about America. We believe we are stronger together and we reach out to each other.

And it will continue with the next President — Hillary Clinton

And I agree with that hope for the future…

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YES WE CAN!

YES WE CAN!

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#DNCinPHL: Day 3. It’s Nomination Time

Today’s events started off with honoring the 26th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  The Call to Order highlighted this.

Call to order honoring the 26th anniversary of the ADA, the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Then Mike Mollena lead us with the national anthem.

Mike Mollena 

Senator Tom Harkin then spoke about the ADA, his brother, and what the ADA means for America.  He then taught us the sign-language symbol for the United States — fingers intertwined and moving your arms in a circle. United one and all is the meaning of this symbol.

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) honoring the 26th anniversary of the ADA. He calls upon Congress to pass the Disability Integration Act that Clinton has said she will sign into law.

The nominations began.

First off was Bernie Sanders.

Executive Director IBEW Local 2222 seconds Bernie’s Nomination

Then Hillary Clinton’s name was put into nomination.

Senator Barbara Mikulski, MD placing the name of Hillary Rodham Clinton for President

Representative John Lewis seconding Hillary Clinton’s nomination for the Democratic candidate for President.

Na’ilah Amaru, an adoptee and Iraq veteran seconding Hillary’s nomination for President

Roll call:vote followed.

Alabama 59 C, 9 S, 1 abstenstion

Alaska 6 C, 14 S

American Samoa  8 C, 3 S

Arizona 51 C, 34 S

Arkansas 27 C, 10 S including 1 vote by Bernie’s brother

California 330 C 221 S

Colorado 26 C, 41 S, 1 abstenstion

Connecticut 44 C, 27 S

Delaware 23 C,  9 S

Democrats Abroad 7 C, 10 S including one vote by Bernie’s brother

District of Columbia . 39 C, 5 S

Florida 163 C, 72 S, 1 abstenstion

Georgia 87 C, 29 S 1 abstenstion

Guam 9 C, 2 S, 1 abstenstion

Hawaii 15 C, 19 S

Idaho 7 C, 20 S

Illinois 98 C, 74 S

Indiana 48 C, 43 S, 1 abstenstion

Iowa 30 C, 21 S

Kansas 14 C, 23 S

Kentucky 33 C, 27 S

Louisiana 45 C, 14 S

Maine 12 C, 18 S

Maryland 84 C, 36 S

Massachusetts 68 C, 46 S, 1 abstenstion

Michigan 81 C, 66 S

Minnesota 42 C 47 S, 4 abstenstions

Mississippi 33 C, 7 S, 1 abstenstion

Missouri 49 C, 35 S

Montana 14 C, 12 S

Nebraska 13 C, 16 S, 1 abstenstion

Nevada 20 C,  16 S, 1 abstenstion

New Hampshire 16 C, 16 S

New Jersey 90 C,  45 S, 7 abstenstions

New Mexico 27 C, 16 S

New York 181 C, 108 S, 3 abstenstion

North Carolina 70 C, 48 S, 2 abstenstions

Norh Dakota 7 C 14 S, 2 abstenstion

Northern Marianas  9 C, 2 S

Ohio  98 C, 62 S

Oklahoma 20 C, 22 S

Oregon 34 C, 38 S, 2 abstenstions

Pennsylvania 126 C, 82 S

Puerto Rico 44 C, 23 S

Rhode Island 19 C, 13 S, 1 abstenstion

South Carolina 46 C, 13 S

South Dakota 15 C, 10 S

Tennessee 50 C , 23 S, 2 abstenstions

Texas 179 C, 72 S

Utah 8 C, 29 S

Vermont passes

Virgin Islands 12 C, 0 S

Virginia 75 C, 33 S

Washington 32 C, 74 S, 2 abstenstions

West Virginia 19 C, 18 S

Wisconsin 47 C, 49 S

Wyoming 11 C, 7 S

Back to  Vermont 4 C, 22  S

Picture of Senator Bernie Sanders

Senator Sanders asks the convention to suspend the rules to accept Hillary Rodham Clinton as the 2016 Democratic candidate for President of the United States.

Sanders then speaks and moves to suspend the rules to nominate Hillay by acclamation. Clinton is declared the Democratic Nominee. Total is not announced and Hillary will speak on Thursday  evening.

For your edification,  here is the final vote count:

  • Hillary Clinton 2874 votes
  • Bernie Sanders 1865 votes

Governor Tery McAuliffe of Virginia  then speaks on behalf of fellow Virginian Tim Kaine. Also spoke of his friendship with Hillary

Then the women of Congress came on stage.  They are 1/3 of the Democratic Congressional delegation

Picture of the women in Congress

A panorama of the diversity of Democratic women elected to Congress from across the country. Several of the women then spoke on how Democrats and the voice of women have changed the conversation in Congress. I estimate that there wer 55 women on stage. About 10 of them spoke.

Following  the women, we had a video from Jimmy Carter.

Senator Shumer talks about 9/11 and how Hillary championed the need for healthcare for the first responders. America shall  and can break down barriers and shatter ceilings. But this can only be done if we get a Democratic Senate majority.

Others begin to tell Hillary’s  story.

She worked with burn victim children.  She worked with kids with disabilities.  She helped insure that kids in South Carolina  no longer were jailed with adults. As first lady of Arkansas, she played major role in improving education in the stae. She worked on adoption  issues so that older kids could find a “forever” home. She continued her fight for children  when she was in the Senate; she reserved an intern position for a person who was raised in foster care.

Then Donna Brazile  spoke. She’s  Vice-Chair of the Democratic National Committee.  She spoke about segregation in the South. Then she spoke of Hillary’s work with the Children’s Defense Fund.

Agter several other speeches, Cecile Richards, the Executive Director  of Planned Parenthood. She touted the Supreme Court decision in Whole Womens Clinic v Hellerstedt that TRAP laws are unconstitutional . But if Trump is elected,  then women’s lives will be in danger.

Cecile Richards, CEO and President of Planned Parenthood

Then a surprise  (to me). Senator Barbara Boxer of California talked about her personal relationship with Hillary. Her son-in-law is Hillary’s nephew. This was a segway into how parenting, families broadly defined, and the right to choose are basic to Hillary’s view of America.

Then the conversation turned to healthcare for all. For me that means Medicare for All, aka single-payer healthcare.  As a result  of Bernie’s push for single-payer healthcare,  the platform has improved and now advocates for healthcare as a human right.

Former Presidential candidate Howard Dean, with his background as a medical doctor talked about the view that healthcare is a right, not a privilege.  He talked about Hillary’s support of the public option and why he believes that Hillary will  help expand acces to healthcare. 

At this point, my sister — who was able to obtain a guest pass for the day — decided to leave and head back to the hotel. So we ended watching  Bill Clinton wrap up the day. He gave a personal, family-oriental  picture of Hillary  and how she wrapped policy with her family responsibilities.