An open letter, an American family, and a young senate candidate from Ohio
Today as a nation we go to the polls to vote. We have endured what seems like an infinitum election cycle, an election of polarizing and exhaustive proportions. An election where the truth was the real loser, with Republican candidates who talked loosely of war, suppressed our right to vote, and where a woman's right to reproductive healthcare was being denied, an America where we would be more unequal and divided than ever before.
A microcosm of this election was being played out in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio where a young Republican candidate, Josh Mandel, was running for the senate of the United States against Democratic stalwart incumbent Sherrod Brown.
This young usurper, a right-wing Jewish ex-Marine, seems to have all the right credentials: youth, drive, and close connections to the wealthy Jewish and influential Ratner family of Ohio. Unfortunately, Josh, like many Republicans today, is another divider trying to breed hate and division among us.
However, sometimes the truth comes forth and triumphs over hate and division, as when several members of the Ratner family placed a paid advertisement in the form of an open letter in the Cleveland Jewish News. It read in part as follows:
Dear Josh, Your cousins, Ellen Ratner and Cholene Espinoza, are among the many wonderful couples whose rights you do not recognize. They were married almost eight years ago in Massachusetts, at a time when it was the only state in the nation to allow same-sex marriage. Their wedding, like yours, was a beautiful and happy occasion for all of us in our family. It hurts us that you would embrace discrimination against them.The Ratner family letter embodies the best of America, our endearing nature for truth and justice; a land where the truth can win-out and a cause that can give us all hope for a better tomorrow. Needless to say Josh Mandel's brand of hate and his family's courage to stand-up for what's right will help to defeat this brand of Republicanism—Josh is projected to lose by an overwhelming majority. Lies and division are not a winning combination for Republicans—never was and never will be!
We are equally distressed by your belief that gay men and women should not be allowed to serve openly in the military. Like you, Cholene spent many years in the armed forces. A graduate of the Air Force Academy and an accomplished pilot, she became the second woman in history to fly the U-2 reconnaissance plane. And yet, you have argued that she, like many gay and lesbian soldiers, should be forced to live a life of secrecy and lies.