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August 1, 2004

D's 2 Cents:
The Road To November

BY
DANICA MILICH

As I sit here today, the day after the Democratic Convention closed, I am hopeful that John Kerry will indeed beat George W. Bush in November. I say this because I believe that John Kerry finally came out swinging last night. He showed his strongest supporters why they believe in him and he introduced his spirit to those voters still trying to make up their minds. He delivered his most spirited speech to date and I say, “it’s about time.”

Kerry showed that he’s not afraid to say it like it is. He doesn’t run from the fact that he protested the Vietnam War, after serving a heroic tour of duty, and he said that he isn’t afraid to go after Bush’s handling of the war and Bush’s administration in general. He vowed to not have a vice president that conducts secret meetings with polluters while working to rewrite our environmental laws and he laid out his vision for economic change by defining how he and his administration plan on restoring our economy by not raising taxes on middle America but by closing corporate loopholes in our tax system and by putting the tax raises where they belong, on the wealthiest 2% of the country/

No, he isn’t the most vivacious speaker, he’s no Bill Clinton when it comes to politics, but then again few men are, instead he’s a man that’s proud of his family, his war record, his service in the U.S. Senate and a man that still believes the true spirit of America. He believes that America isn’t just a place for the wealthy but that it’s a place for people like John Edwards, the son of a mill worker, who is now running for Vice President of The United States. He is indeed a man that can and should defeat George W. Bush in November.

Now, I know you’re all thinking that he’s a politician like the rest of them and I don’t deny that but what I chose to still believe is the idea that voting does make a difference. If the election of 2000 taught us anything it should be that your vote truly does count.

As a woman in the 21st century I’m hopeful that John Kerry will continue the struggle to have women paid the same wage as men for the same work done. If you’re a woman reading this article I call upon you, no matter what age you are, to take 2 minutes to learn about the issues and VOTE.

I found myself really raking over the coals to women that I work with the other day. One woman is recently out of college and the other is an intern about to go back to school. Both are very intelligent young women. However, I about flung myself across the lunch table when I found out that neither had voted in the recent Presidential election and neither seemed like they would take the time to vote in November.

I proceeded to go crazy. I explained how I grew up with an immigrant father who drilled into us every election that we needed to take the time to vote and to respect that fact that we were able to vote. You see he fought during the war against his own communist country to come to America so that he and one day his kids would be free. So, there were no if, ands or buts in our house…you voted.

I also explained to them that both have a vested interested. I shared with the college woman the fact that the Bush administration was the worst administration in terms of cutting federal student college loans. To the other woman, I asked her if she was pro-choice and she responded yes, well then, I said, you need to continue to protect this choice and the way you do that is to make sure that a President that holds your same values is in the White House. I don’t know if they will vote in November, I’ll be checking in on them, but I do hope that I made them think that we do have responsibilities as Americans. We should never take for granted our born right to democracy and our voting privileges.

Ok, I was on a rant, where was I….. As a Lesbian, I’m hopeful that Kerry will continue to sponsor such acts as the Employment Nondiscrimination Act and that he will invoke full, legal rights to gay civil unions. Kerry has already said he does not support marriage of same-sex couples but he has also stated that civil unions should be bestowed upon same-sex couples and that he will never allow the Constitution to be amended to included such discrimination as the Federal Marriage Amendment. I say it’s a start. It may not be what the gay community wants in full, but it’s a start. Bush can only use the term Gay when he chooses to use the term to continue to divide our country.

As a daughter of a father that died from Alzheimer’s I am hopeful that Kerry will indeed allow further stem cell research so that diseases such as Alzheimer’s can continue to find advancements and one day the ultimate solution, a cure. . So, when I say I’m hopeful and I use the slogan that Kerry and John Edwards have adopted, “Hope is on the Way” , I find myself believing it as much as I can because without hope we are truly left with an administration that has chosen so many bad paths that another 4 years would only leave us with further despair.

So, when November comes, have some hope, get out and cast your vote. Do your American duty for your country, for yourself, for women that fought for us to have the right to vote and cast your vote. Even if your candidate doesn’t win you will have made a difference and therefore allowed yourself the right to comment.

 
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