Let me be the first to warn you of the wailing about to commence at an even higher pitch that the system is rigged to favor the wealthy when Bernie Sander’s ‘revolution’ fails the numbers test required of any political revolution in the United States beyond the one that gave us the Constitution. The Internet campaign for Bernie has been intense on social media and his following on Facebook is substantial. But that’s where it ends in terms of the big numbers required for change even if he did make his way to the White House, which he won’t.
Why? Because the guys who wrote the Constitution made sure that the kind of revolution Bernie wants isn’t possible without overwhelming support for change at the states level for a constitutional convention and constitutional change. Their aim in framing the Constitution as they did, making the compromises they did on the way to ratification, was the Founder’s way of protecting the ‘commonwealth’ which for them included white, land-holding males. So believing that understanding the system is rigged came in with Bernie Sander’s is as politically naive as thinking the change we all want happens because everyone and their Facebook friends want it.
Political change takes hard work at the grass roots level, something never accomplished by sitting at a computer moaning about the status quo. I can tell you, and have already told, in this blog what’s coming in American politics because I am out in the places where the voting is about to take place and can see and hear the people who live there think and feel. That’s what Hill on Wheels is all about. Unfortunately, it isn’t what much of America is about because the real news isn’t on Fox or MSNBC or CNN, or even on the Internet where many people get their politics. It is out in the country in the stores and malls; on the streets and in the kitchens of American rich, poor and what’s left of the middle.
But it isn’t like people are paying any political attention to one another out there beyond the normal sort of American water cooler political association with the exception of the fact that there are fewer and fewer water coolers and more angry people with no political memory. Everybody accuses Washington of living in a bubble without considering the possibility that all of America lives in a certain kind of bubble. It’s hard to see a bubble when you are inside it, and even harder to break it from there. Self-education might be the first step to getting a view beyond the bubble, and to do that, you have to get up and turn off whatever you have on and get out and look and read for yourself. Read, as in books.
Among the wailing you will hear online is the unmistakable: “I’m leaving if my person doesn’t get elected!” Never heard that before. Actually, when Ronald Reagan got elected in 1980, I heard that a lot. Many of those people I heard it from, not only didn’t leave, they figured out a way to get rich on the Reagan ‘revolution’ that has dumped us where we are. The real revolutionaries stuck around and stayed true to their principles and faced down the Reagan administration’s homophobic reaction to the AIDS crisis. That standoff, in it’s time, brought about a clearer understanding of the gay community to all of America through theater and film and other more direct forms of interpersonal communication. I am proud I was a part of that movement because it earned rights for everyone.
I wish the younger generations, and the people who will get upset when change that they see as obvious and overdue not happening, would understand that that sort of change has eluded many of us for a long time. But we keep working away at it because change in this country is incremental at best. Often, it is two steps backwards to one step in the right direction. We have to wait for the wealthy to take their profits first. This is all just one more fight. It’s not the first or the last, so let’s stop with the apocalyptic language, take a deep breath and read the one worm’s hole in the Constitution that allows for We the People to take back the government from We the Wealthy. I have attached it for your reading pleasure.
The Constitution of the United States:
“The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or by conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress; provided that no amendment which may be made prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any manner affect the first and fourth clauses in the ninth section of the first article; and that no state, without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.”