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[personal profile] eljaydaly
My grandfather was a big deal in Republican politics in Philadelphia in the forties and fifties. He won an election or two, he was on the national committee. When we cleared out my father's house and my uncle's, you wouldn't believe the number of elephants we found -- not to mention the inauguration memorabilia.

My uncle, this grandfather's last son, died recently. He told me that in the fifties on Election Night everybody would gather in his family's house to wait for the election returns -- Republicans, Democrats, it didn't matter. They all got together to eat and drink and argue and wait for the results. it was like Superbowl. People disagreed, they were passionate, but in the end they were all in community to support a system they really believed in.

It's hard to believe that was only a few decades ago.

Date: 2011-01-10 02:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] j-cheney.livejournal.com
I wish that were still the case, too...

Date: 2011-01-10 02:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Isn't it sad? And yet, I've been watching Boardwalk Empire, and it seems the parties were at least as divided then as they are now. I imagine people thought so during the Civil War Era.

Politics. If everyone would just understand that I should be made Empress, everything would be better.

Date: 2011-01-10 03:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] eljaydaly.livejournal.com
I personally think the world should be ruled by women over 60. We need to live in a crone-ocracy.

Date: 2011-01-10 03:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bogwitch64.livejournal.com
Wouldn't that be grand? Seriously. I'm not even kidding.

Date: 2011-01-10 03:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] eljaydaly.livejournal.com
I agree -- it would be grand! =D

Date: 2011-01-10 03:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] malkingrey.livejournal.com
I think this sort of thing goes in waves -- the couple of decades leading up to the Civil War were nastily partisan, and the twenties and thirties had Red scares and Huey Long and all that (we tend to think of FDR these days as having been universally beloved, but that's probably because he gets the 'wartime president' halo; during the thirties the right wing regarded him with an opprobrium fully equal to that felt by their modern descendants toward, say, Bill Clinton. And what they said about Eleanor . . . not only was she an activist in her own right, she had the temerity to be plain-verging-on-downright-homely.)

I think we're in the midst of one of those waves of unpleasantness right now. It may not fully subside until we get a class of legislators in Congress who grew up feeling sick of the way things currently are.

Sometimes I think that the problem with our current lot of politicians is that so many of them came of political age during the sixties and seventies, which was a time when -- for various reasons -- being a politician looked like a deeply uncool thing to grow up to do. So most of the really cool and charismatic and intelligent people went off to be rock stars or software moguls or whatever, and the job of going into politics was left to the student-government types, and you don't even want to know what kind of person was a student-government nerd back in 1969.

Date: 2011-01-10 06:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hildebabble.livejournal.com
That's interesting about your grandfather. My grandparents might have known of him. (They lived in northeast Philly, near Franklin Mills.)

It is sad that civilized discourse is such an endangered species, isn't it? There's too much "us vs. them" rhetoric for my taste these days.

I'm sorry to hear about your uncle.

Date: 2011-01-10 08:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shweta-narayan.livejournal.com
I probably shouldn't say this out loud, especially when I don't have the energy/brain to deal with responses, but, eh, no impulse control just now.

I'm pretty convinced that it's the race aspect that changed this. As long as they were both white parties, they were basically two sides of the same thing. Now the racial divides that have always been here are much more visible.

And I also think that this is why the overall situation is being read really differently by white-privilege-denying-liberals and intersectional-liberals.

Date: 2011-01-11 09:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] eljaydaly.livejournal.com
That makes a great deal of sense.


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