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View Diary: Romney Lost Because of My Dad (76 comments)

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  •  Sorry about your loss, Another Grizzle. (20+ / 0-)

    I lost my own Greatest Generation dad last January (at 91).

    He would've been so thrilled that Obama won.  He was the only liberal in his family (the only college educated one as well - thanks to the GI Bill, he got a BS and two Masters), but he and my late Mom were "Kennedy Democrats" from Massachusetts, and on his deathbed, my Dad was worrying about Gingrich getting the nomination (he was ahead while my Dad was dying.)

    "Obama's just got to get re-elected," he would say to me.  "These people are terrible!"

    I like to think he was watching last night and laughing.

    "When a man tells you that he got rich through hard work, ask him: 'Whose?' Don Marquis

    by hopesprings on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 09:01:19 PM PST

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    •  my mom got to vote for obama (10+ / 0-)

      in 2008, but didn't make it to her 94 birthday and the second vote.

      just remembering how thrilled she was when he was first elected brought me to tears.  at least she got to see that

      one of her favorite stories was about an african american friend in pa who was getting married but knew my mother could not attend without jeopardizing herself so she invited her to come by and look through the door

      my mom had a lot of stories like that which demonstrated how closely she perceived human circumstances

      but to the diarist:

      i would really like to know the particular lines which rethugs have crossed on your father's terms.

      it would teach me a lot about how people think

      Donate to Occupy Wall Street here:

      by BlueDragon on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:08:24 PM PST

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      •  My father voted for Obama and Democratic ticket (13+ / 0-)

        in 2008 as his last action on earth.  He broke his hip upon returning home and died 3 days later never awakening from a drug induced coma.  He was 92.

        •  God Bless them all. And the values they gave us. (19+ / 0-)

          My Dad was 91 and about to teach his 19th term at Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement (his second career, begun in his 70's after retiring from his first career).  He took a fall and that's what happens...sometimes, as the Chaplain told me, "The body isn't as strong as the spirit."  His spirit was up for another 90 years.

          In his memoirs, he wrote a poignant vignette about Ray, one of his best friends from undergrad (all of his college buds were, like him, ex-WWII GI's going to school thanks to Uncle Sam).  Ray was always "mysterious" about his background and family...the joke was, he was an Italian with Mafia ties. One night, my Dad and his gang of buddies all went to see the very sexy Eartha Kitt do a live show, and afterward, my Dad made a racy joke about interracial marriage ("We all ought to try it.")  Ray got very quiet.  Later, a couple of my Dad's other friends said to him, "Didn't you know?   Ray's a Negro and he's 'passing' for white."  My Dad had no idea; he was mortified.  Not that his friend was black, but that he'd accidentally hurt his feelings.  He and Ray had a long talk and my Dad never forgot what Ray shared about his personal pain and struggle, being a light-skinned black man torn between accepting who he was and 'passing' in the name of professional success (Ray eventually got therapy and stopped hiding his racial identity, by the way.)

          My Dad had a few African American friends in the Navy and a couple close black colleagues at work, but obviously, this incident with Ray had such a powerful effect on him (from a merchant-class, white, Irish Catholic immigrant family who were VERY conservative and not terribly tolerant of 'other') that he wrote a story about it in his 80's.  

          My Dad was very politically informed.  When Obama first came on the scene, my Dad got very excited about him and said he reminded him a lot of Ray.  He told his Ray story a lot in his later years, and I think in Obama's victory, he saw a glimpse of a world that he wished he and his dear college friend could have been able to live in, back in the late '40's and early '50's when such things weren't yet imaginable.  

          "When a man tells you that he got rich through hard work, ask him: 'Whose?' Don Marquis

          by hopesprings on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:50:46 PM PST

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          •  wow. as a non-descript white woman I have always (7+ / 0-)

            had the opposite experience in the sense of 'being given a warning instead of a ticket, or allowed other lee-way just because I seem to be exactly what they want to see. I have a lot to learn about these racial things and have recently been reading people's stories of "passing." Thank you for this.
                It was over 30 years ago, away at college, that someone I was getting to know showed me his family photo album and I was surprised and confused- his whole family [except him? I didn't understand] was "black." I was not prejudiced or bigoted, I simply never realized that family genetics could come out that way and my reaction upset him so much that we didn't end up being very close friends after that. I still feel bad that I insulted him quite by accident at his vulnerable point and couldn't take it back. Happy ending, though, he was last seen in love with my roommate instead.

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