This is a campaign about change. It is high time for corporate media to start talking about the real issues. -Sanders
The line continues along three sides of the Portland Maine Civic Center. Voices mingle together in a hum of excitement, “Jeez, the Rolling Stones don’t even bring this kind of crowd.” A baby blue school bus circles the block, blasting 60’s Bob Dylan as it proudly displays an invitation to the evening’s event. The mass moves slowly, 7:05PM and people continue to join from all directions. One of the campaign volunteers passes by the glass windows, looks out with a smile on his face, his eyes unable to hide his shock at the attendance. We have all come to hear for ourselves the dream of presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, the man who came into my mind first as a long shot for the ticket, but who has recently drawn the largest crowds in the race towards 2016.
In his self-proclaimed “campaign about change,” Bernie Sanders addresses the issues of the present and of the future, the issues that the Millennials can’t help but be concerned with. The effect is clear from the youthfulness of the crowd, hundreds of youth I barely believe to be yet 18 have come out along with an eclectic mix of hipsters, once-hippies, feminists, college students, grandparents; a mix of generations fed up with the system of inequality. The man beside me in his mid-50’s with untamed blue hair vibrantly responds to the words of Sanders while the young men behind me hoot and holler, “Bernie! My man!”
Sanders desire for action follows his understanding, in the words of Frederick Douglas, that “freedom is never given, but must come out of fight and struggle.” And he acknowledges that “if we want real change, we not only need to elect someone” we need to work together as one.
With a passionate tone, emphatic hand motions and pointing, Sanders imparts on the crowd his goals for America. Despite America being the wealthiest nation in the world she has more wealth inequality and the highest rate of childhood poverty of any other nation. “This,” Sanders declares, “is a disgrace. [It is] not what the United States of America is supposed to be like!” In response to such disappointments Sanders advocates for the building of jobs through reconstructing failing infrastructure, the creation of a living wage of $15.00 an hour, and cracking down on the corrupt and indecent behavior of wall street. We must tell the billionaires, “you can’t have it all!”
The crowd roars with the presentation of each new idea. Signs that display the name Bernie in the colors of the rainbow fly into the air around me, another reads “Texas loves Sanders” and a third is a peace sign holding up his name. Bernie Sanders understands the plight of the middle class and they are ready to stand up with him.
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