I Did Not March for Bernie Sanders
People have often asked me, “John, why do you dislike Sen. Sanders so much?” My answer, which could go into policy issues such as his staunch support for gun owners or his 1972 essay where he stated: "A woman enjoys intercourse with her man — as she fantasizes being raped by 3 men simultaneously”, but I digress and simply go to the most frustrating thing about him for me: his insistent need to wave his finger in, or near, a woman’s face to either belittle or scold them like a petulant little girl.
Don’t believe me? Here is a prime (and compiled) example of all the times he waves his finger to belittle Secretary Clinton during one of the Democratic Debates last year.
Obviously, I do not have a problem with men in feminism; what I do have a problem with is a man headlining the first women’s convention in 40 years (and I’m not the only one that thinks so). I have a problem with a man who clearly has created such a divide in the Democratic Party, that we will be lucky if we can move beyond internal party politics in order to beat Trump in 2020. I have a problem with Senator Sanders and his arrogance (along with some of his most vocal supporters) that he would have beaten Trump (hint: he wouldn’t have). I have a problem that the tag line for the conference: "Reclaiming Our Time," along with the individual that coined the phrase, were somehow cast aside for a white man opening the event.
On January 21, 2017, I marched for my nieces; I marched for the women I care for; and I marched for the issues I am passionate about. I dedicated my time to the Women’s March Los Angeles Foundation (which was the largest sister march with over 750,000 participants) because I continue to believe in the causes they represent (Note: The Women’s March Los Angeles Foundation came out with a statement about Senator Sanders highlighting the conference. You can read that statement below):
I wrote a post a few years ago about men’s roles in feminism. You can read more about that here but the main point I want to relay from that article is this: men have to be comfortable with never being asked to sit at the "front" of the proverbial feminist bus. We have to be comfortable with being supporters of feminist causes rather than leaders of them. While there are men that lead the feminist charge, as yes, I know I am one of them as President of the Hollywood Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW), I do not consider Senator Sanders to be one of them, and as I write this, I can already envision your comments about how I am just a HillBot or still mad about 2016. However, funny enough, you're right! I am mad. I am mad at the divide created by Senator Senators throughout the 2016 Democratic Primary and I am mad that it continued into the general election (which I am still hesitant to believe Trump actually won outright and that there weren't "other" factors that caused his untimely win).
However, regardless of the outcome of the 2016 election, I, along with many others I know that are vocal supporters of Secretary Clinton will, if the time comes that Senator Sanders does decides to run for President of the United States, will need some serious convincing in order to support him because of his infamous finger (among many other things).
While Senator Sanders may be the “lesser of two evils” (a phrase I wish I never have to hear again) many of us will sit back and relish in the fact that as a result of certain stubbornness to vote for Secretary Clinton in 2016, we are now living on the edge of a nuclear fallout with two unstable dictators at the helm, a Congress which seems more interested in legislating a woman's vagina than actually governing (although they control both chambers of congress), and an insistent group of Sanders supporters who refuse to simply admit to the role they play in getting us to this point . While it may feel like déjà vu, Senator Sanders most vocal supporters will have to work overtime to show how and why we, the #HillBots and #EstablishmentDems, should support his bid to win the White House in 2020.
Although I do not claim to speak for anyone other than myself, I find it difficult to believe that the 65 million people that voted for Secretary Clinton or the 750,000 people that showed up to march in Los Angeles on January 21, 2016 did it for Senator Sanders.
*Editors Note: As of 10/20/17, Senator Sanders cancelled his appearance to speak at the Women's Convention so he could visit Puerto Rico and the destruction caused by Hurricane Maria. If you wish to buy tickets for the Inaugural Women's Convention, please click here.