As aging Hipsters, we've had the benefit of watching as the tenor of politics has grown ever more divisive. Negative campaigning isn't new - you can find examples as far back as Jefferson - but today the message seems designed to divide and polarize. And now, an even more insidious set of code words is creeping into the campaign with the expressed purpose of stirring racial hatred.
Perhaps MaCain reasons that if he can scare enough white people into voting against a black man, he might have a chance to once again split the electorate into numbers that favor his campaign. In the McCain/Palin world, "real Americans" means white people living in predominantly white states. "That One" is code for anything different than white.
What he doesn't count on is Obama's uniquely compelling message to bring real change to the country and unify the electorate. You don't have to even have a firm grasp of the issues to make a choice. Just observe. McCain - cranky and annoyed, attacking at every opportunity, or Obama - cool and composed with a message that looks to the good character of all Americans.
McCain would have us believe it's about experience. But experience without leadership is a hollow promise. It's really about judgment. McCain chose a divisive course when he unleashed his judgment on us in the form of Sarah Palin. Sure, she has "energized the base" (read, pander to the far-right) but at what cost?
There was a time when I might have supported McCain, but this single decision signaled that he had caved to the Republican hate machine and embraced its narrow agenda. Include the fact that he hired the same Rove disciples responsible for torpedoing him in the last election and we get a clear picture of a man who says "Country First" yet means McCain first... at all costs.
Once again, all you have to do is observe to see the contrast. If it's a matter of judgment, I'll take Biden as an indication of good judgment and Palin as an example of poor judgment.
I'm no socialist (whatever that means) but like to think I can spot fairness when I see it. The Bush administration has made a mockery of the American Dream by forcing a greater percentage of the tax burden on the middle class while easing it for the top 10% of wealthy Americans. And unfortunately, if the current trend keeps up, the top 10% will be the only ones working any way.
This election is about protecting the middle class. Not just the white, right-leaning, evangelical middle class, but the entire middle class. Its about creating jobs that help every American aspire to something greater. The "real Americans" in this race are the ones who realize it's time to stop focusing on greed and start thinking about what's fair.