Tuesday I went with my husband and some friends to a Bernie Sanders rally in Essex, VT. We started off at the polls, raucously (and accidently) interrupting town meeting. No idea voting would be right in front of a good percentage of the town. I’m pretty sure they could tell who we were voting for, due to the t-shirts proclaiming “Bernie 2016!” After that awkward moment, we had a few snacks, crammed into my car and headed north to Essex.
We arrived about an hour and a half before the doors were due to open. It was a bit chilly. We had a long wait, but there was entertainment. People were hula hooping and a guy was running around giving high fives with an enormous paper mache hand. We ran into our friends Reagh and Megan and ended up starting a Bernie song sing-along. By the time the doors opened I couldn’t feel my feet, but we were all in high spirits.
Bernie’s first words to the crowd were, “It’s good to be home!” The crowd was deafening. My voice was hoarse by the end of the night. After Bernie spoke for several minutes, with the crowd cheering after every sentence, it was over…then he came back out! He joined Kat Wright and Ben Folds to sing ‘This Land is Your Land’ and then walked out into the crowd, his bodyguards following. They were having a bit of a time keeping up with Bernie. This elicited a gleeful, “Hehe, you guys can’t keep track of him, can you!” from me. I meant it in the most positive way. Bernie does his own thing, and that is what I like about him.
Vermonters overwhelmingly voted for Sanders because, for most of us, he reflects our values. He cares about people and our environment. Most importantly, he is consistent and his rhetoric is reinforced by the actions he takes. For the first time in my life I can vote for someone and not settle for the least worst. Bernie Sanders gives me hope that my children will live in a tolerant and healthy environment.
Feel the Bern!
*Go Bragh means forever.