Speaking to the American People from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania this morning (June 2, 2020,) former Vice President Joe Biden, saying words that reminded students of Modern United States History of the legacies of past Democratic Presidential Administrations from Franklin Delano Roosevelt to Barack Obama, called for Americans to unite against the forces of racism, hate, and division and work with him to rebuild America and leave it better than when they found it.
While the address (please click on the link to the full video below to see the whole speech) repeated many themes the Presumptive 2020 Democratic Nominee has said in the last several weeks when expressing sorrow for the tragic murder of George Floyd, commenting on the failed leadership of Donald Trump to defend Democracy at home and meet the challenges of the Coronavirus and racial divisions, and proposing several legislative measures to reform law enforcement and rebuild the middle class, Mr. Biden, perhaps for the first time in this campaign, laid out in a coherent narrative the reasons why the people should turn out and vote for him this November.
Towards the end of his speech, Mr. Biden spoke about the continuing historical battle for the “American Ideal” between the light that fights for inclusiveness and progress and the dark that allows hatred and division to fester. He pledged he would, unlike Mr. Trump, be a positive agent for moving the country forward and would work for the people and not his own self-interests. He promised he would endeavor to bring people together and heal old wounds of injustice, not prey on prejudices to cling to power like Mr. Trump. He called on Americans to channel their pain and anguish to put divisions aside and rebuild a better America together.
Mr. Biden’s words below best illustrate why voters should support him this November.
“The President of the United States must be part of the solution, not the problem. This President today is part of the problem and accelerates it. When he tweeted the words ‘when the looting starts, the shooting starts,’ they weren’t the words of a President. They were the words of a racist Miami police chief in the 1960s. When he tweeted that the protestors would be greeted with the most vicious dogs when people would have been really hurt, they weren’t the words of a President. They were the kind of words Bull Connor would have used unleashing his dogs on innocent women and children…”
“I wish I can say hate began with Donald Trump and it will end with him but it didn’t and it won’t. American History isn’t a fairy tale with a guaranteed happy ending. The battle for the soul of this nation has been a constant push and pull for more than 240 years. A tug of war between the American ideal that we are all created equal and the harsh reality that racism has long torn us apart. The honest truth is that both elements are part of the American character….”
“At our best, the American ideal wins out but it’s never a rout, it’s always a fight and the battle is never fully won. We can’t ignore the truth that we are at our best we open our hearts rather than clinching our fist. Donald Trump has turned this country into a battlefield driven by old resentments and fresh fears. He thinks division helps him. His narcissism has become more important than the nation’s well being that he leads.”
“I ask every American to look at where we are now and think anew; is this who we are; is this who we want to be; is this what we want to pass on to our children and our grandchildren: fear, anger, fingerpointing, rather than the pursuit of happiness….do we want to be the America we know we can be, an America we know in our hearts we could be and should be.”
“I won’t get it (the Presidency) right every day but I promise you this, I won’t traffic in fear and division. I won’t fan the flames of hate. I’ll seek to heal the racial wrongs that have long plagued our country, not use them for political gain. I’ll do my job and I’ll take responsibility. I won’t blame others. I’ll never forget that this job isn’t about me. It’s about you. It’s about us. I will work not only to rebuild the nation but to make it better than it was. …”
“We need to do our duty and part of that is remembering who we should be. We should be the America of FDR and Eisenhower; of Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King; of… Neil Armstrong…we should be an America that cherishes each other…you know we are a nation in pain but we must not let our pain destroy us. We’re a nation enraged but we can not let our rage consume us; We’re a nation that is exhausted but we will not allow our exhaustion to defeat us”
“We always try….I truly believe in my heart of hearts we can overcome. We stand together as one America, we’ll rise stronger than before….This is the United States of America. There has never been anything we’ve never been unable to do when we set our minds to it when we’ve done it together.”
Mr. Biden’s words are a call to action for the American People to unite behind his positive vision of the American Ideal and reject the false and dark worldview of Donald Trump.
It is a summons for the people to band together and build on the American Dream and make the country better off than when they found it.
It is an optimistic forward vision of what America is and what it can be that has been expressed by all Democratic and even Republican Presidents since Franklin Roosevelt except for Donald Trump.
It is a hopeful inspiration that people can rally around and cheer for.
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