Tag: Hillary Clinton

A Letter to My Kids on the Occasion of the 2016 Election

| November 11, 2016 | 0 Comments

Dear Danny & Bridget,

It’s now two days from the election of Donald Trump as our next president.  As I’ve said to you, the

Bridget accompanying Rita to vote. Bridget voted in PA

Bridget accompanying Rita to vote. Bridget voted in PA

magnitude of this event makes it hard to keep all the negative consequences in your head at the same time.   I keep thinking of new ones that I hadn’t considered or forgotten about.  Most of them are things over which we have no individual control.  “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I can’t change…”

But one thing we can control is how we remember this campaign, particularly the last few days.  As you know, I am always proud of you.  But my pride was literally bursting as I heard of the things you were doing to support the election of the first woman president.  Danny in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.  Bridget in Pennsylvania. Me in Cleveland and

Photo accompanying NBC story about Bridget and the Springsteen rally

Photo accompanying NBC story about Bridget and the Springsteen rally

Mom holding the fort in DC, anxiously watching us all from home.  I was moved to tears more than once.  I loved the fact that we all stayed in such close touch, even in our various locations.  It was truly a family affair.

You both threw yourselves, heart and soul, into this election.  From the day I heard that Mom was pregnant with Danny, I have always said that my fondest hope is to have children with passion.  Of

Rep. Joe Kennedy greets VP Joe Biden in Scranton Photo by Dan Black

Rep. Joe Kennedy greets VP Joe Biden in Scranton
Photo by Dan Black

course I was hoping that your passion would be consistent with mine, but that wasn’t a prerequisite.

And boy did I get my wish.  You both are passionate and showed it in this campaign.  Danny, your 3,000 miles logged with Rep. Joe Kennedy will be something you remember your whole life.  And, Bridget, your enthusiasm for canvassing is one of the things that brought me to tears.  Frankly, I hate canvassing, but I do it because we have to.  Fortunately, I moved up to “management” on this campaign and only had to dispatch canvassers, not canvas myself.  That was nice.  And I loved hearing about your volunteer gig at the Bruce Springsteen concert, including getting on the news as a result of your Hillary socks.

What I want you both to promise me is that you will compartmentalize this experience.  A bad outcome on a campaign can taint the whole experience.  Don’t let that happen.  I’m not just preaching to you.  I’m preaching to myself, as well.  Let’s all draw a bright line between the campaign and the election.  And lets remember this experience with the fondness it deserves.

You are both extraordinary people and you showed in your “passion” the big-hearted values that were the engine of the Hillary Clinton campaign.  No outcome can change that fact.

Bill meeting Hillary at Kent State University

Bill meeting Hillary at Kent State University

Yes, she lost and it was devastating.  I honestly don’t have any words of comfort on that point.  Our friend Luke said it was like a sudden death in the family.  The only way through that experience is time, the time to absorb it until it becomes part of the new reality.  We’re all going to have to go through that process in our own way.

America is heading into a rough patch politically.  But we’ll get through it.  I would just ask you to keep the values you fought for in the campaign.  And keep that passion.  I love you both more that I can express.

Jay-Z Concert – Chaos

| November 5, 2016 | 0 Comments

Things were going very smoothly, albeit somewhat slowly.  There were four magnetometers and many thousands of people waiting to get in.  Some had waited since 3 pm and it was now about 6:30 pm.   I was dutifully overcoming my unconscious bias and giving out stickers to everyone that walked by me.

A commotion erupted at the left-most magnetometer.  A man who seemed very intoxicated got into a dispute with the police and the secret service.  It went on for a while before he was shuffled away.

As if this little dustup were a dramatic foreshadowing, a real crisis erupted.  Suddenly a very large crowd of people waving “preferred” tickets arrived from around the other side of the building.  They seemed disgruntled and were demanding to be let into the venue.  Nobody at our station knew what was going on or where they were coming from.  It turns out there was a suspicious package at the VIP/preferred entrance.  The secret service closed the gate and sent them to us.  Maybe somebody was informed, but my team was surprised.  I called the overall leader to let him know and he told me about the package.

The people patiently standing at our gate were understandably reluctant to give up their places to this new folks, irrespective of their “preferred” status.  I’m told that some senior Clinton staffer lifted the gate to allow the preferred people in front of the regular folks and all Hell broke loose.  The crowd surged into the security stations and the Secret Service declared a safety hazard and shut down our gate, as well.  The crowd erupted.  For the next 40 minutes various police and regular people tried to get the crowd to back up to no avail.

Jan Roller, my host in Cleveland, and her sister stood up on some concrete barriers and shouted for the crowd to step back.  “Go back!! Go back!!” they bellowed.  It was pretty scary.  This video doesn’t really convey the crisis situation, but gives an idea.

Somehow, very gradually, some space was established in front of the magnetometers, enough to begin screening people through again. After about half an hour of screening people, some order was restored.   It was pretty amazing that the mood of the crowd became more festive.  It was during this period that the guy said I looked like Bernie Sanders.

Ast a kind of epilogue, we went for Chinese food after the concert.  I walked behind Jan, Joy and a couple of their friends as we entered the restaurant at about 11:3o pm.  As we were being seated, a couple in the booth next to us asked how we liked the concert.  Jan asked how they knew we were there. The guy said, “You were the lady shouting, ‘Get back! Get back!”

Cleveland is a small town.


Jay-Z Concert – Unconscious Bias

| November 5, 2016 | 1 Comment

My job providing replenishment tickets to other team members converting Clinton tickets into venue tickets did not require much work at all.  They all had plenty of tickets.  So, I wondered aimlessly watching the people come through security.

I discovered a large roll of Hillary stickers and decided to distribute them to the incoming Jay-Z fans.  It was an interesting social experiment for me.  As might be expected, most of the attendees were African American rap fans.  Distributing stickers meant going up to people and offering them a sticker.  Some would simply take the sticker, some would lean their shoulders toward me for me to apply.  It was fun interacting with people.

However, I found myself more willing to approach the women with a sticker than the men.  Some of the guys frankly looked scary to me.  Leather jackets, torn jeans, lots of bling and sunglasses.  I realized that my reluctance to approach the men was a clear sign of my unconscious bias.  Most of them had been waiting for 2 hours before they got through security and their expressions were serious, if not grim.  But I forced myself to approach whoever came through security, including the scary guys.  In literally every case, the man’s face would soften into a smile when I offered the sticker.  They immediately went from looking scary to looking benign, if not downright friendly.  No matter how many times this happened, I retained my reluctance to approach many of these guys.  That unconscious bias is very deeply ingrained.

There was, however, one very mean comment that cut me deeply.  I relieved one of the team members and waded into the crowd to do distribute tickets.  One guy in the crowd yelled, “Hey, look, Bernie Sanders is here.”  Ouch.  I reminded him that I had the tickets and he’d better be nice to me.  He claimed that somebody else that looked like him made the comment.

You be the judge.
















Hey, what a minute…

Jay-Z Concert – Sound Check

| November 5, 2016 | 0 Comments

Waiting for the doors to open, we were able to peak into the auditorium.  The concert was at the Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University.  Looks to hold about 12,000 people.

Both Jay-Z and Beyonce rehearsed a bit to an empty arena.  Jay-Z was dressed very casually in an untucked flannel shirt and his trademark baseball cap.  Beyonce rehearsed separately wearing sexy shorts and a spangly top.  She came back a little later for a dress rehearsal wearing a pantsuit, in honor of Hillary.  She objected a quote that was projected on the screen behind her.  It was Hillary’s quote from earlier in her career about declining to stay home to bake cookies.  She said it was an incomplete sentence and lacked context.  Sure enough, during the concert, the quote was extended and more clear.