Tom Being Tom

Just me, talking about stuff.

Doug Jones

roll tide, jones wins

Roll Tide

By on 13 Dec 2017

Last night, the people of Alabama did a good thing. The right thing.

It was entirely unexpected and, anyway, by a very narrow margin. But enough people in the Heart of Dixie had the courage of conviction to place country over party, and elect Doug Jones to the Senate. A Democrat. In Alabama.

Alabama voted for Donald Trump, in 2016, by a margin of 28 percentage points. They last put a Democrat in the Senate two and a half decades ago. They are the very definition of a Red State. But, last night, that went out the window, as 670,151 Alabamans cast their votes blue.

But this wasn’t about party. This race was not about Republicans vs Democrats, not in the state of Alabama. In the press, it was. To the president, it was. But for the denizens of the Cotton State, and for many of us watching from the outside, it was not. It was about character. It was about an alleged pedophile, a clear bigot, and a devout racist, battling against a man who, by all accounts, is a good man. And the good man won. Despite all odds.

It was not easy. 650,436 Alabamans still voted for Roy Moore. 650,436 Alabamans chose party over character. The party liners made it clear that, if the allegations were true, they’d still rather have a child molester than a Democrat in the Senate. That is sad.

The president of the United States of America made that clear, too. Donald Trump himself made similar comments, imploring those who would listen to forget the allegations against Roy Moore on the sole basis that the Senate needed a red vote for his ambiguous tax bill. It is not a surprise. The entire country had to rally behind a man of bad character, the president himself, to win the vote in 2016 by a negative margin.

But win, he did. The final tally in 2016 was a vote for intolerance. Like Roy Moore, Donald Trump represents bigotry, misogyny, and narrow-mindedness. They welcome all religion, as long as its Christian. All color, as long as its white. Any gender, as long as it knows its place in a male-dominated society.

The election in Alabama was a referendum against such shallow thinking, however small the margin. 670,151 people in the deep south stood up and said “enough.” Enough prejudice. Enough xenophobia. No more free passes. Enough bad behavior. Enough.

Last night, the people of Alabama did a good thing. The right thing.

And I wake up this morning feeling a little bit better about human nature; and about the future of the United States of America.

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