Okay, this is actually shocking. I’ve lived my entire life and I’ve never seen my father, who is now 88, prefer a democrat for president. He’s never had the slightest inclination to even remotely consider any democratic candidate, as far as I know. My sisters and I have had many chances to try to pry him away from his TV Dinner-style politics and I’m sure I’ve never succeeded. There has always been just a kind of stony, unresponsive opposition any time I’ve launched such a conversation—sort of like walking up to a wall, looking at it really intently and trying to get it to move. Rather hopelessly inert.
Well, my Dad was in town last week for a family wedding and, without either blinking an eye or waiting for me to make a pitch on behalf of Hillary, when I asked what he was thinking about the election, he simply said: “Of course I’m not voting for that schmuck: I can’t even stand looking at him. I’m voting for Hillary.” With this stunning pronouncement, he deftly aimed his ire directly at Trump, the insupportable candidate. We did not discuss parties, policies or affiliations and I am sure it’s unlikely that he’s switching parties. But he is definitely supporting Hillary. I asked him if he’d donate to help her campaign and he said yes, also a first, and we sat down at my computer and I helped him to make what was for him a generous donation. Then he suggested I hit up his sister, my aunt living in South Carolina, for a donation . . . !
I was wondering if others are having this kind of “out-of-party” experience with their parents. So I turned to DailyKOS where I quickly found Chxmy’s “A Convert for Hillary” with a similar story. This writer described her disbelief in having somehow achieved a near miraculous conversion of her Republican mother. So now I am beginning to think that, though Chxmy’s mother was more coy and obliged her to put out a lot more persuasion effort, in fact our conservative-minded but not heartless parents are seeing the light and are feeling quite unable to vote for Trump. Hillary aversion—insurmountable according to some news reports—is not quite the juggernaut we are being led to believe. This is a hugely reassuring along with the concept that the fundamental values of respect, decency, honesty and yes, experience, that my parents taught me matter, are stronger than party politics. Now I have proof that even hard-core Republicans do actually care about the future.
While at DK, it was impossible to miss the post about this wonderful group, called “Bend the Arc Jewish Action,” which has grandparents warning their kids not to vote for Trump, a reverse kind of Sarah Silverman “Schlep.”
A group called Bend the Arc Jewish Action has made a video where it’s “bubbes and zaydes who are stepping up to push the younger generation to vote for Hillary Clinton,” according to a story in Advertising Age.
“Join the Jewish Movement to Defeat Trump,” says the group’s website, which uses the hashtag #WeveSeenThisBefore. In a video, Jewish grandparents promise to “Rise From the Dead and Haunt Their Grandchildren if They Don’t Vote for Hillary Clinton.”
Though my bubbe and zeydah, my dad’s grandparents, are long gone, this group is also rather unprecedented in my experience. Which does make me think that there is some hope for this election despite all of the worrisome reports coming out. Read DK’s “The “Great Schlep” — in reverse! Grandparents tell grandkids to vote for Hillary” and learn more about the group here.