Somehow Darragh Murphy conned me into giving a speech at the Rise event in Cheeseman Park, and it was pretty tough on me. I have been on a sort of outrage autopilot, but getting up there to give the speech I had to communicate what I saw to others, and it made me very very sad.
I had not prepared a speech, so whatever I gave was completely extemporaneous… and so here I will recreated as best I can the speech I gave (with a few corrections and clarifications)
Hello, I blog as Texas Hill Country. Some of you may know me and some may not, so… hi.
First, I would like to talk a little be about myself, where I come from and how I ended up here. You know, I have not had a life that was really all that different from Barack. I was born to a middle class family. We didn’t have a lot when I was a kid. I lived in a muslim country for a few years as a child. I then got bounced around between family members for a little while. I have lived in several countries and even more states. In high school, I worked at a Blockbuster video store right next to a Baskin Robbins. Oh, and I am still paying on the student loans I took out to go to law school. I went to Washington DC and worked for more than 143 days… but, unlike Barack, I don’t think I am qualified to be President of the United States. (punctuated with a snarky smile btw)
I come from a very old Democratic family. My great grandfather was a Congressman under Roosevelt and fought to pass the New Deal. My parents knew the Kennedys and went to the Holy Trinity Catholic church with Teddy and, occassionally, Bobby. My Dad was going to Georgetown Law and my Mom worked in the Jesuits office. Every so often, Father McSorley at the school would ask my Mom and a few of the students to help Kennedys and do odd jobs, small clerical stuff and the like.
As a kid growing up I always heard how inspirational and how amazing the Kennedys were and just how much Jack, Bobby and Ted meant to my parents.
Well, fast forward to the 90′s. Bill Clinton came on the scene, I could vote and I was intensely interested in politics. Very quickly, the man from Hope, Bill Clinton, became my Jack Kennedy. After Hillary gave her speech in Beijing on how women’s rights are human rights I was floored by her. She became my Bobby. I love them dearly. They have meant so much to me and inspired me in incredible ways.
But I will never forget or forgive how their character was assassinated this year.
It is fortuitous and ironic that we gather here, in Cheeseman Park, the site of a former cemetery, to celebrate the death of democracy.
And, so I stand before you with hope. Hope for change, but not the type of change Barack Obama wants.
I have hope that I will live in a country where our votes are respected. I have hope that I will live in a country where our votes cannot be changed. I have hope that I will never have to look into the eyes of my wife or future daughter and say “You almost made it. I am sorry the boys held you back.”
And I want change.
I want to change this country back to one where I don’t worry about my vote counting. I want to change the Democratic party leadership to one where I don’t have to worry about whether or not they will listen. I want to change this country back to one where I don’t have to worry about the sanctity of the vote.
And I want to change this country to one where we no longer have to hope…
We can just be.
So, there it is… my speech. A bunch of crap I put together off the top of my head. I hope it makes sense to some of you.
love to all.