Thoughts on Bernie Sanders’ La Crosse Rally. AKA The Safe Revolution


When I first became radicalized I was traveling through South America riding bitch on Che’s motorcycle recording experiences via his diary entries. I was reading Das Kapital misinterpreting the complicated prose as a singular outcome for managerial ethics. I was a soapbox comrade jeering opposing viewpoints at parties to BRO-hemian friendlies of capitalism, too consumed with craft beer to explicit a rational counteraction other than, “it would never work. Look at how the Soviet Union, Cuba, and Venezuela turned out.” To which I would explain how sanctions and other imperial absurdities led to communism’s fall, rather than criticize the regimes themselves. In hindsight, to quote Seinfeld: You might say a cockeyed optimist, who got himself mixed up in the high stakes game of world diplomacy and international intrigue. Like most ignorant dunces I was doomed to fail, and fail I did. I began theorizing on revolution’s circumstances and what they truly are. I was an affluent spoiled by the pleasures of capitalism. When reading upon countries where revolution occurred they were exploited by capitalism, beaten like currency passed through too many fingers. Destitution was rampant in the streets of Havana, held like a guarded secret in the lungs of citizens occupying Tahrir Square. Their insurgents were met with gunshots and death while in the U.S. college children were executed under pepper spray only to resurrect through pricey lawsuits that elongated capitalism’s greedy reach. What could we possibly understand about sleeping in jungles and attacking our enemies through guerrilla warfare?

Then along came my answer. He appeared on television before the backdrop of an American flag casting shadows over (what I suspected) was Lake Champlain in Burlington, VT. He had a Brooklyn accent that made each vowel sound bass heavy and strong. Especially when he announced the word, “YUUUUUGE!” I felt an energy swell inside my fingers and rather than lift another page of socialist literature I took to the streets with a clipboard and canvassed potential voters. The Safe Revolution was manifesting. It took less than a year before he proclaimed a rally to be held in close quarters. After receiving dozens of text messages from volunteers espousing for a grand grass roots attack, I agreed to volunteer at the disclosed rally. I won’t bore with minute details, though there was nothing quite like that audience at the Sanders’ rally. Highly animated elderly folks that danced with signs claiming love as the answer and proud LGBT youth holding hands comfortably in public. It was a minuscule tolerance HQ built from camaraderie denouncing dictatorial inspired fear. And when Sanders reached the stage a lady standing next to me sobbed while exclaiming, “I can’t believe he’s here. I can’t believe I am seeing him like this.” In response I and a young man standing on the opposite side of me rubbed her back in comfort as she smiled in reciprocal gratitude. When subjective experience recollects comparisons of love I’ll use the Sanders’ rally as a foundation and build from there.

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