Friday, April 15, 2016

Why I’m Voting for Bernie Sanders

Because my landlord just threatened me with eviction. How’s that for starters?
Because I’ve been engaged in a grueling, white-knuckle job search for the last eight months. Because I’m currently working as a doorman for $10 an hour because my unemployment ran out. Because I’m using credit cards to buy groceries and pay for my utilities, so that I can use all my cash for rent.
That’s how bad things have gotten.
So forgive me if I seem a little impatient for with all these limousine liberals who have the luxury of voting for the pragmatist, the woman who wants everyone to be happy with incremental change, because everything is going great for them.
I’m fucking happy for you.
If you could just step outside your sheltered existence for a few seconds, you might see the reason why 50,000 people gathered in New York City’s Washington Square Park last night, while only 1,300 gathered for Hillary’s dismal event in the Bronx.
Forgive me if I’m not going to just settle for the same old bullshit anymore.
Especially while corporations are sitting on record profits, while most people’s wages have been stagnant for the last 15 years (or gone down). Especially when they’re moving their corporate headquarters to other countries so they don’t have to pay taxes like us little people do.
I’m sorry, but I’ve fucking had enough.
While we’re on the subject of declining wages and disappearing jobs (despite all media coverage to the contrary), lets talk about the sorry state of our so-called “safety net” that’s supposed to help people like me.
While I was still collecting unemployment (which Congress saw fit to cut down to six months because the economy is doing “so well”), I applied for food stamps and was turned down because I made too much money.
I even asked about applying for what’s euphemistically known as “cash assistance” (i.e., welfare), because of the very real possibility that I was going to have no income whatsoever when my unemployment ran out, and was told that—even if I was approved—it would take at least 30 days to process my application.
Gee, what am I supposed to do about eating in the mean time? (Thank God the doorman job came through!)
Which brings me to another subject.
I had been planning to write a whole different post about my actual job search (and I was hoping to have a more triumphant ending by now), but it basically boils down to this:
It’s impossible to find a job these days without a referral. Period.
And if you happen to have the bad fortune to work in an industry, like mine, that has fallen off a cliff in the last few years, too bad for you—because all your contacts are probably going to be in the same boat as—if not worse off than—you are.
If the government really cared about finding people jobs, they would have programs to retrain people. They would spend money on things like fixing our crumbling infrastructure to actually create jobs.
Hmmm… whose platform does that sound like?
Bernie Fucking Sanders—that’s who!
So, on Tuesday, I hope you’ll join me, and millions of other New Yorkers like myself, in voting for Bernie Sanders in New York’s Democratic primary.
I’m hoping my financial situation will improve in the very near future. But I’m not willing to wait another four years to say that about the United States.

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