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Bjorn Against

(12,041 posts)
Wed Apr 6, 2016, 10:39 PM Apr 2016

I can not be silent about the alienation the party loyalists have made me feel

I have been a member of DU for a long time but I suspect my days may be drawing to a close and I wanted to say goodbye to my fellow Bernie supporters just in case it is my last chance.

To be clear I am not planning on leaving DU, but I do suspect there is a strong likelihood that I will be banned for speaking my mind.

I had a post hidden tonight, I am not at all surprised that it was hidden and in fact I expected it. There was nothing nasty about my post, but it expressed my honest opinion and it is an opinion that party loyalists do not want to be heard. The fact that my post was hidden proved exactly the point that I was trying to make, the party loyalists demand our loyalty to them but they will treat us like absolute garbage if we express our honest opinions about how we have been alienated by the party.

It does not matter how much we have supported progressive causes in the past, this is a site in which all kinds of nasty crap is posted on a daily basis yet requires its members to walk on egg shells if they don't feel comfortable voting for a Democratic candidate.

Quite frankly I am sick of walking on egg shells especially on a site that allows the sort of nasty behavior we see from certain party loyalists on a daily basis.

I stand by every word of my hidden post and because I stand by every word I feel no shame in reposting every word. I realize that taking this action may get me banned, but if it does get me banned I hope people will take notice and recognize just how little the party loyalists care about the people they are alienating.

So without further to say here are the words that already got me hidden once tonight, if they get me banned the second time I post them then I wish you all the best.

I am one of the millions of Americans who have been alienated by the party loyalists

I am about to say some things that are likely to upset a few people, in fact it is even possible that this post will get me banned from Democratic Underground. I am willing to take the risk of being banned however because I know that I am not alone, I know there are many others both on this site and off that feel the way I do. I also know that there are party loyalists who do not want to hear the things I am about to say and rather than listen and reflect on the current state of the Democratic Party they will want to chase me away. They may succeed in silencing my voice on this site but in doing so they will also prove my point, and the point is that party loyalists are driving people away and causing serious damage to the party.

I am one of the plurality of Americans who considers myself to be an independent. As a left leaning independent I have voted many straight Democratic tickets and I have even volunteered for the party, but I have never felt the party represented me. I have a great deal of respect for many of the grassroots Democrats who have worked hard to pursue progressive policies, but sadly I feel the leadership of the party has turned their backs on progressives and chosen to embrace big money interests instead.

When Bernie Sanders announced that he was running for President I felt for the first time that I finally had a candidate that truly represented me. I knew that Hillary had the full support of the party establishment, but what I did not know is just how far the party would go in smearing those of us who did not accept the status quo.

From the day Bernie entered the race we saw him being attacked on racial issues, while I thought these attacks were unfair I could at least understand that anyone who runs for President was going to face tough criticism.

The problem that the people attacking Bernie on racial issues had however is that Bernie had been an advocate for civil rights for years and he was able to put together a strong racial justice platform. That is when the Hillary campaign turned their attacks on people like me. Bernie supporters were subject to baseless broadbrush allegations that we were racists and misogynists. At first it seemed these attacks were coming from a few random internet posters and while they were upsetting they were easy to brush off, as time went on however it became more and more clear that there was a coordinated effort from the Hillary campaign to smear those who supported Bernie.

The term "Bernie Bros" started to appear not just on internet message boards but in major newspapers, it was a sexist term that completely ignored the millions of women that supported Bernie and tried to stereotype Bernie supporters as white racist and misogynistic men. The Hillary campaign went full steam ahead with pushing this offensive stereotype and smearing Bernie supporters however, it became very clear that she was more than willing to attack Bernie supporters while running for office. That made it very clear to me that if she will attack us during the campaign she will attack us if she gets the Presidency as well.

I am sorry but I can not vote for a candidate who will attack people like me, and I know that both Hillary and Trump are going to continue to treat people like me as the enemy because that is what they have done in the past.

I will continue to support Bernie as long as he is in the race, but if he does not get the nomination then I am going to be voting for Jill Stein and I will encourage others to vote for her as well.

Now I know that there are going to be people who accuse me of "holding my vote hostage" after that statement because many in the party like to act as if they own the votes of the left. My vote is my vote however and I will cast it for the candidate that best represents my values.

While I am bound to get people screaming at me for voting for somebody who I know will not attack people like me as the Hillary campaign did, the people who treat me like the enemy are not going to earn my vote.

This is what many in the party don't seem to understand, the party does not own the votes of independents like me. Just because I am a left leaning independent does not mean that I am going to support the Democrats automatically just because I think the Republicans are worse.

I do think the Republicans are worse, but I also think that if we want things to improve in this country we need to hold both parties accountable to the people. The only way I can see the current situation improving is if the Democrats are put in a position in which they have to earn our votes rather than simply demanding them.

Right now I don't see the party loyalists doing anything to earn the votes of independents, in fact I don't think I have ever seen an election in which the party has shown as much hostility to independents as they have in this election.

We are constantly seeing Bernie torn down because of his history as an independent and make no mistake about it, when Bernie is attacked for being an independent that does not make other independents feel welcome. The Democrats can not win elections anywhere in this country without winning a substantial number of independents, there are more independents in this country than there are Democrats and they are the ones who decide elections.

While the disenfranchisement of independents in primary elections has always been an issue, that issue has been made more clear this year than ever before. Finally independents have a candidate that they are passionate about, but many have not been allowed to vote for him because closed primaries treat them as if their voice should not be heard. If the party wants independent votes in the general then they need to listen to their voices in the primary season. If they don't listen then it is the party's own fault if independents won't vote for them in the general.

My vote in November will be going to either Bernie Sanders or Jill Stein but I will be voting Democratic in down ticket races assuming the candidates in those races don't view people like me as the enemy.

If the party loyalists truly cared about their party they would listen to criticism and try to win back the votes of those they have alienated. Sadly however I don't see that happening, instead I predict the party loyalists will continue to demand loyalty from others while doing everything they can to make the people whose loyalty they are demanding know that their differences of opinion will not be listened to.

The party loyalists are the party's worst enemies and they will be responsible for many lost elections in the future.

17 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
Highlight: NoneDon't highlight anything 5 newestHighlight 5 most recent replies
I can not be silent about the alienation the party loyalists have made me feel (Original Post) Bjorn Against Apr 2016 OP
I see a lot of this sentiment all over Facebook...ALL OVER FB! bkkyosemite Apr 2016 #1
Agree, I keep getting passive aggressive comments... GeorgiaPeanuts Apr 2016 #2
I don't think "party loyalists" is an apt description. They are Ruling Class loyalists. rhett o rick Apr 2016 #3
I've been on DU since a couple of months after DU was born in 2001. I've never had a post hidden w4rma Apr 2016 #4
I got my only hidden post for posting a video from the Young Turks... GeorgiaPeanuts Apr 2016 #6
Thanks for reposting so we could all have a chance to read it. rgbecker Apr 2016 #5
Excellent post Scootaloo Apr 2016 #7
Thank you for re-posting this, Bjorn Against! Peace Patriot Apr 2016 #8
I'm only here since Oct. 2012 LiberalElite Apr 2016 #11
Thanks for posting beltanefauve Apr 2016 #9
If this post is hidden, I will be leaving in solidatrity with you....n/t pantsonfire Apr 2016 #10
When I see posters refer to "our Party" LiberalElite Apr 2016 #12
Great post, Bjorn! Since the so-called "Democratic" party has seen fit to expose their CORRUPT, in_cog_ni_to Apr 2016 #13
Thank you for the kind words everyone Bjorn Against Apr 2016 #14
I agree with much of what you said rosesaylavee Apr 2016 #15
The Party elite as talking heads on TV smugly announce that we have no choices. emsimon33 Apr 2016 #16
P.S. There is a second life on http://jackpineradicals.org/content.php emsimon33 Apr 2016 #17


(2,353 posts)
2. Agree, I keep getting passive aggressive comments...
Wed Apr 6, 2016, 10:42 PM
Apr 2016

Insinuating I am a republican in GD ; Of course they always refuse to come out and say it outright, but it is so obvious, if they do it repeatedly I just put them on ignore and move along.

It seems you cannot have criticism of Clinton...


rhett o rick

(55,981 posts)
3. I don't think "party loyalists" is an apt description. They are Ruling Class loyalists.
Wed Apr 6, 2016, 10:50 PM
Apr 2016

They don't care one bit about what Clinton stands for other than a tough female. It's an authoritarian adulation. If she supports ruining the water supplies of the 99%, they could care less. If she supports killing Iraqi's, they don't care. If she supports Prisons For Profits and tough laws to keep them filled, THEY DON'T CARE. They see her as their golden idol, the supreme authoritarian.



(31,700 posts)
4. I've been on DU since a couple of months after DU was born in 2001. I've never had a post hidden
Wed Apr 6, 2016, 10:51 PM
Apr 2016

until this election. Not even a single post hidden. I was a moderator and I was often the moderator that would defend posters coming over here and saying vaguely neoconservative things.

I was immediately banned by the AstroTurfers in the "Hillary Clinton" group. And I was soon-after banned by the AstroTurfers in the "African-American" group, who consider the group an extension of the "Hillary Clinton" group.

Then I called out one of those AstroTurfers for anti-semitism and I not only had 3 posts hidden, but I had my account suspended and put under review for an entire weekend.

These people supporting Hillary don't act like Democrats.



(2,353 posts)
6. I got my only hidden post for posting a video from the Young Turks...
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 12:29 AM
Apr 2016

Because it was too critical on Hillary Clinton... Yet Blue Nation Review smear pieces stew regularly in GDP.


(4,796 posts)
5. Thanks for reposting so we could all have a chance to read it.
Wed Apr 6, 2016, 11:24 PM
Apr 2016

The Democrats need the independents' and the African-American votes to win in 2016. I think it is a legitimate argument to make: That is, which candidate will bring out the independents who otherwise stay home or who will vote for the change candidate, Donald Trump.

Peace Patriot

(24,010 posts)
8. Thank you for re-posting this, Bjorn Against!
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 12:35 AM
Apr 2016

It is beyond me to understand why your post was "hidden." We don't even have a Democratic presidential candidate yet. So that isn't the issue. And that you state that you won't vote for just anybody because they have a "D" after their name is a perfectly reasonable thing to say, whether we already had a candidate or not. This is the Democratic UNDERGROUND. It is not the DNC, a state party organization or any official organization at all, connected to the Democratic Party. "Underground" to me means healthy open discussion of all matters and high tolerance for alternative views.

We have had this "underground" ethic in the past. We still post alternative views and pro-Sanders views without admin interference. But Clinton supporters do NOT share this "underground" ethic. They operate here strictly as propagandists, and often disrupt discussions (with nothing to say, or with empty snark) and swarm after Sanders supporters, using the "alert" system and the jury system much too often, and with very ill effect. I would guess that they have antagonized every Sanders supporter on this site.

I'm sorry that you've been their victim. I honor your views. You are absolutely right--no one "owns" your vote. No one "owns" mine either (lifelong, 50+ year Democratic voter and activist).


(14,691 posts)
11. I'm only here since Oct. 2012
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 05:55 AM
Apr 2016

which I guess is plenty of time for DU to change from its inception. Did it change before then? I ask because the "underground" part of the name always seemed to be a joke. "Underground" to me has a connotation of defiance, radicalism and persecution as a result. Maybe that's over the top but as a result, DU always seemed pretty mainstream to me.


(14,691 posts)
12. When I see posters refer to "our Party"
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 06:04 AM
Apr 2016

it reminds me of how I too feel alienated from it - and it started when the first Clinton was president.

This part of your OP stood out for me:

"Now I know that there are going to be people who accuse me of "holding my vote hostage" after that statement because many in the party like to act as if they own the votes of the left. My vote is my vote however and I will cast it for the candidate that best represents my values. "

THEY are the ones holding our votes hostage. We have to free our votes from them to vote for OUR candidate, not the one being pushed on us. How is it that THEY get to vote their "values" (whatever the hell they are) and WE have to go along regardless? In what fucking parallel universe is THAT democracy?


(41,600 posts)
13. Great post, Bjorn! Since the so-called "Democratic" party has seen fit to expose their CORRUPT,
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 07:34 AM
Apr 2016

Dirty little underbelly, I'm pretty sure most True Progressives will be following in your footsteps. Now we know who and what they REALLY are and I want nothing to do with them if they steal this election from Bernie. - which is their plan. Corrupt is corrupt and I don't care if you have a "D" or an "R" next to your name...Al Franken, Barbara Boxer, John Lewis, James Clyburn, Chuck Schumer, Patrick Leahy - whoever the TRAITOR TO THE PEOPLE is...if you're CORRUPT, I want nothing to do with you.

29% = so -called "Democrats"
26% = Rethugs

After THIS election, if the so-called "Democratic" party has 20% of the population left, it will be lucky - they're leaving in DROVES if the election is stolen from Bernie.

Good luck winning ANY future elections.


Bjorn Against

(12,041 posts)
14. Thank you for the kind words everyone
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 07:47 AM
Apr 2016

I did not know if my account would still be active when I woke up this morning but it is, I guess I must have got a more friendly jury the second time.

I am going to keep making it clear that those who have demanded loyalty while showing none in return have lost my vote and the votes of many others as well.

Both Loonix and Manny Goldstein were banned for saying basically the same thing that I am saying and I have accepted that it might get me banned as well. I have decided however that a site that will allow constant nastiness but then ban the people who don't show enough loyalty towards a campaign that continually treats us with contempt is not a site that I feel comfortable on. If I get banned life will go on but at least I will go down for standing for what I believe in.


(12,126 posts)
15. I agree with much of what you said
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 09:41 PM
Apr 2016

I can't vote for Stein. I am trying hard not to think about it frankly ... I am that upset. I am in my late 50s and attending more protests, writing and calling Congress more than a person living in a functional democracy should have to do. And Clinton has the gall to refer to protesting as some kind of fun, alternative exciting past time! What the...

Just f**King tired of her condescension.


(3,128 posts)
16. The Party elite as talking heads on TV smugly announce that we have no choices.
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 09:49 PM
Apr 2016

But we do have a choice and their smugness, and their marginalizing us, and their belief that because we held our noses and voted in the past that we will do so again ignores this fact.

The Party elite have made it clear that they have stacked the deck against change, that we are powerless. But we have tremendous power, the power to NOT vote for Hillary if she is the nominee in the general election and we can be tossed like garbage from forums and the the Hillarites can howl all they like, but in all the lying and cheating, marginalizing and hubris, they have missed the point that they need us more than we need them.

I have been a Democrat all my life. I have phone banked, canvassed, and GOTVed in rain, sleet, and snow. But this election has made it very clear that the Democratic Party is not only ironically named but that it is little better than the Republicans in tossing the base under the bus in order to pander to the wealthy and powerful. Just as the Republican Party has been torn from its roots, so has the Democratic and it is very sad.


(3,128 posts)
17. P.S. There is a second life on http://jackpineradicals.org/content.php
Thu Apr 7, 2016, 09:51 PM
Apr 2016

You will find great discussions there and all of the banned have found a safe home.

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