Bernie Sanders Drops Out Of Presidential Race, Ceding Nomination To Biden

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) ended his bid for the White House on Wednesday, effectively handing the Democratic nomination to former Vice President Joe Biden and ending hopes that a progressive challenger would take on President Donald Trump in November.

I know a lot of people on my list are going to be upset about this. There’s nothing wrong with that — I’m still upset that my candidate of choice this year dropped out, and I’m still upset that my candidate of choice in 2016 only won the popular election, but lost the electoral vote (\suchBS\). Take the time to grieve, to be angry, to rant and rave about how poorly our system works.

But once that’s done, please: Prioritize the good of the many, and recognize that however much you don’t like Biden, he will in no way be as bad as Trump. Sure, he’s not as good as you’d like, so push him to be better than he is! Continue pushing, fighting, and protesting in favor of all the causes that led you to support Bernie! Do everything you can to move Biden further to the left.

But please, please, please: Don’t throw a fit and refuse to support Biden, whether through giving your vote to a third-party candidate who has no chance of beating Trump, however ideologically closer they are to you than Biden is, or by not voting at all.

You’ve all seen what’s happened over the past four years. Please do everything you can to make sure we don’t have four more years of Trump in office.

A famous joke by Emo Philips:

Once I saw this guy on a bridge about to jump. I said, “Don’t do it!” He said, “Nobody loves me.” I said, “God loves you. Do you believe in God?”

He said, “Yes.” I said, “Are you a Christian or a Jew?” He said, “A Christian.” I said, “Me, too! Protestant or Catholic?” He said, “Protestant.” I said, “Me, too! What franchise?” He said, “Baptist.” I said, “Me, too! Northern Baptist or Southern Baptist?” He said, “Northern Baptist.” I said, “Me, too! Northern Conservative Baptist or Northern Liberal Baptist?”

He said, “Northern Conservative Baptist.” I said, “Me, too! Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region, or Northern Conservative Baptist Eastern Region?” He said, “Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region.” I said, “Me, too!”

Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1879, or Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1912?” He said, “Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1912.” I said, “Die, heretic!” And I pushed him over.

This pretty much sums up how I see the Democratic party (and general left-of-center ideologies in the US) right now.

A lot of people who agree on 90%+ of what we want. But damned if we won’t eat each other alive over that last 10% and let everything burn down in flames in the process.

From Elizabeth Warren, 2020, and the Sexism Next Door – The Atlantic

“Electability” claims to be a benign and objective concern. It is neither. It merely outsources biases, rationalizing them by appealing to the moral failings of imagined others. It talks about neighbors, and “other people,” and “what the country is ready for.” It throws up its hands and washes them at the same time. And it suggests an especially insidious strain of sexism. The sexism of the political past has often been blunt and unashamed in its expression (“Lock! Her! Up!”/ “Iron! My! Shirt!” / “She-devil”). The sexism of the political present, however, is slightly different: It knows better, even if it fails to be better. It is a little bit cannier. It has lawyered up. It is figuring out, day by day, how to maintain plausible deniability.

It’s important to remember that Martin Luther King Jr. had a lot more to say in his life than just his “I Have a Dream” speech:

Figures like President Barack Obama have reminded us that King once said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” But over time, the great orator’s writings became less magnanimous and ever more convinced that white supremacy was the most significant obstacle in attaining liberation for all black people.

In his final book, Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?, originally published in 1967, King wrote that “Whites, it must frankly be said, are not putting in a similar mass effort to reeducate themselves out of their racial ignorance. It is an aspect of their sense of superiority that the white people of America believe they have so little to learn. The reality of substantial investment to assist Negroes into the twentieth century, adjusting to Negro neighbors and genuine school integration, is still a nightmare for all too many white Americans.”

He continued: “These are the deepest causes for contemporary abrasions between the races. Loose and easy language about equality, resonant resolutions about brotherhood fall pleasantly on the ear, but for the Negro there is a credibility gap he cannot overlook. He remembers that with each modest advance the white population promptly raises the argument that the Negro has come far enough. Each step forward accents an ever-present tendency to backlash.”

By this point in his life, King had abandoned the rose-colored glasses of his youth. Instead, he was laser-focused on addressing white supremacy in its basest and most intimate forms: in communities, schools, and neighborhoods.

I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.

— Martin Luther King, Jr., in Letter From Birmingham Jail

While I haven’t been paying a lot of attention, this looks about right, at least from a policy standpoint. (The numbers are how many questions out of 20 I agree with the candidate on.)

Candidates with Warren at the top and Biden at the bottom

You can take the quiz at the Washington Post.

Ranking on a “would I feel good about voting for them?” scale have the same top and bottom results, the rest would be shuffled to varying degrees.

Ranked on a “would I vote for them if they were the nominee?” scale, they’d all be in the number one spot. Because while some are more in line with my personal beliefs than others, the priority is getting Trump out, and the top of the ticket vote needs to be a strategic vote to get Trump out of office, not an idealistic vote to “send a message”.