Before I can even begin to discuss my experiences outside the DNC I have to point out the absurdity of the day’s theme. “A Lifetime of Fighting for Children and Families.”
The Democratic Party has just pushed forward the most blatantly pro-abortion platform in its history and it almost seems like a cruel joke that the organizers of the event invited Cecile Richards, whose career has been dedicated to tearing apart families through the violence of abortion, to speak on this day. You cannot actively advocate for the “right” to kill and dismember certain children while claiming to fight for the rest. We must commit to fight for all children, even those deemed “unwanted.”
Thankfully, many of the people we engaged with on Tuesday were willing to discuss this inconsistency with us. As Maria mentioned in her article, the vast majority of the protesters at the convention were dissatisfied Bernie supporters. Starting from a position of mutual frustration at the Democratic Party seemed to be a very effective jumping-off point for most of our conversations. Even though Bernie Sanders is extremely pro-choice, his supporters seemed to be pretty open-minded to our message. I think this is because throughout his career Sanders has worked for the expansion of civil and human rights for the marginalized and oppressed. If you were to apply these convictions consistently to all human begins, the preborn would obviously be worthy of protection. Most of Bernie’s young supporters had never been presented with this approach to human rights and were genuinely interested in our perspective.
Similar to what I witnessed at the RNC, it was very evident that young people are slowly moving away from the two major parties in favor of candidates that they believe will truly stand for them. People are becoming less willing to vote for “the lesser of two evils,” opting instead to not vote for evil at all. Human rights should never be a partisan issue, and I really think more people are recognizing this truth. This gives me hope as a Consistent Life Ethic activist that we could actually be working toward a culture that values and protects human beings regardless of circumstance.
Tuesday also saw the roll call vote for the Sanders delegates. Many protesters thought that this would be their chance take their party back and give Sanders the nomination. Our group stopped for lunch at a local restaurant to watch the vote and even though I would never support a Sanders presidency, I found myself almost rooting for him. At least people were doing something to stand against the corruption of the Clintons. Many of the nominating speeches in favor of Sanders focused on the importance of human rights. A particularly inspiring speech came from Tulsi Gabbard, a representative from Hawaii. She focused on Bernie’s “Movement of Love and Compassion,” which strives to bring our society together by recognizing the inherent dignity of each human being. She said, “it is when we truly care for each other, choosing inclusion and love over divisions and hatred that this great country is truly at its greatest.” I believe it is this mentality that, when applied consistently to all humans, will bring about the end of widespread injustices in our culture.