Monday, December 10, 2007

Oprah: Apathetic No Longer


Step aside, Iraq; destruction of CIA torture tapes; health care; mortgage crisis. The big news on the campaign trail, Democratic or Republican, is the Big O. Oprah. Goddess.

After drawing 8500 souls to Verizon Wireless Arena (now say that five times fast) in Manchester, New Hampshire, Ms. Winfrey drew over 29,000 people to a football stadium in Columbia, South Carolina for Barack Obama. Reports confirm that she was inspiring. In N.H.: "He understands that he can bring us all together as one United States of America. Not the red states and the blue states and the left and the right, but the United States of America....Apathy is believing that disappointment is normal; what Barack Obama has taught me is that disappointment doesn't have to be normal." In South Carolina: Barack Obama has “a tongue dipped in the unvarnished truth” so “Dr. King dreamed the dream, but we don’t have to dream the dream anymore; we get to vote that dream into office.”

But here is the most interesting thing the queen of daytime television noted: "For the first time in my life I stepped out of my box, stepped out of that TV box and supported a candidate for president."

That's right. When Bill Clinton- he of the balanced budget, Family and Medical Leave Act, Brady Bill, assault weapons ban, effort to reform health care, expansion of breast cancer research and Earned Income Tax Credit- stood for election and reelection, Oprah Winfrey stood on the sidelines. When Al Gore, already a pioneer in environmentalism and poised to build on Clinton's generally progressive record, ran against George W. Bush, Oprah Winfrey stood on the sidelines. And when John Kerry challenged President Bush, already a manifestation of failed right-wing policies, Oprah Winfrey stood around.

Now Ms. Winfrey has decided to endorse. There are several reasons to support Barack Obama. Oprah Winfrey is not one of them.

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