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Uncle Barb's

It's never a "free speech" issue. It's usually a "these are the consequences of your freedom to speak" issue.

-Kelly Oxford (twitter)-

Joy

Geraldine Ferraro

I was present in the Miami auditorium when Walter Mondale announced that Geraldine Ferraro would be the vice-presidential candidate for the Democrats.

We were at a NOW conference at the Fountainbleu which was already a great experience thanks to Kate Clinton. The convention delegates went crazy, crying, laughing, hugging. It felt like times were a changing.

Ms. Ferraro's acceptance speech at the Democratic Convention was the highlight of my television watching history. She was profound, right on, and just the right person for the job. The only thing that would have been better is if she had been the presidential candidate. Tears of happiness and relief flowed while I listened.

Years later at a lecture, Ms. Ferraro warned that working within the two party system was the only way to go. She discounted any moves outside of the two party system as not viable and therefore not worth the time. During the question and answer, I asked about this statement and reminded Ms. Ferraro that Lenora Fulani had gotten on the ballot in 50 states. The audience turned on me. I swear I heard hisses and boos. However, Ms. Ferraro came back to me twice more to address the issue without any prompting on my part. I walked away from that lecture totally enthralled with Geraldine Ferraro who welcomed my challenge and considered my question with her profound intellect. I understood that difference in opinion in this case was between a realist and an idealist.

Thank you Geraldine Ferraro for breaking barriers, for asserting women into presidential politics, for continuing to work, push, lobby and use your considerable influence in bringing women into the political realm that is their right. The times may not have changed as much as we hoped, but you made a tremendous difference.

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