The first time I voted was in 1984. Coming from a liberal Democratic family I dutifully pulled the level for Mondale/Ferraro. For you millennials, Geraldine Ferraro was Amy Klobuchar before Amy Klobuchar was Amy Klobuchar with the major difference being that she actually got the Vice Presidential nomination. I always laugh when some feminist accuses me of being sexist for not voting for Hillary. I voted a woman on the Democratic Presidential ticket before most of you were born.
But Geraldine Ferraro wasn’t the only woman on the Vice Presidential ticket in 1984. Indeed, one of my biggest regrets was not casting my first vote for the Communist Party, which featured Gus Hall as the presidential candidate and Angela Davis as the vice presidential candidate. Dammit. Had I voted the Communist Party ticket back in 1984 I would been able to say I voted for Angela Davis before she was cool.
In 2020 Angela Davis would call that irresponsible. New Jersey back in 1984 was actually a swing state. Reagan (a man infinitely more evil than Trump) crushed the hapless Mondale pretty much everywhere. I think he may even have won Massachusetts. Let me check. Yes, Reagan won Massachusetts. These days Trump has no chance of winning Massachusetts or New Jersey (which is odd considering how both states have more racists than you can shake a stick at) so my vote is irrelevant. Nevertheless, Angela Davis herself argues that I should vote for Biden (and whatever version of Geraldine Ferraro he picks as his Vice Presidential candidate).
ANGELA DAVIS: Well, my position really hasn’t changed. I’m not going to actually support either of the major candidates. But I do think we have to participate in the election. I mean, that isn’t to say that I won’t vote for the Democratic candidate. What I’m saying is that in our electoral system as it exists, neither party represents the future that we need in this country. Both parties remain connected to corporate capitalism. But the election will not so much be about who gets to lead the country to a better future, but rather how we can support ourselves and our own ability to continue to organize and place pressure on those in power. And I don’t think there’s a question about which candidate would allow that process to unfold.
You can tell her heart really isn’t in it. The lack of clarity in her language is the dead giveaway. But I would like to ask her if there’s any difference between Trump and Ronald Reagan and if she regrets running in 1984. I would like her to tell me that my 18 year old self made the right decision by voting straight Democrat. In any event, since Biden has now been endorsed by Noam Chomsky, Bernie Sanders and Angela Davis, yeah I guess I’ll add my meaningless vote to the Democratic Party’s probable landslide. It will be nice to get rid of Trump and not have to read his asinine tweets.
p.s. Poor Walter Mondale. Even McGovern won Massachusetts.