July 26th, 2016, the second day of the Democratic National Convention, was the day democracy died.
The shunning of Bernie supporters continued from within the state and all around. Bernie turning the nomination over by acclimation to the Corrupt One and the vitriolic yelling surrounding me proved too much, and I started sobbing. I had to leave our seats. Providentially, I found Christine Kramar and Leslie Sexton right outside in the hallway. I fell into their arms, and we group-hugged. Also providentially, we then saw the huge crowd yelling “walk-out” as they marched passed us in solidarity. The three of us decided on the spot to join them. It was the right thing to do after the corruption, deceitfulness, and rigging of this election (the “coup”). Since I had the credentials, I ran back inside to let our Bernie Nevada delegation know of the walk-out in case anyone wanted to join us. Of the ones there at the time, Alexis Salt, Tacy Geesaman, and John Geremia walked out with Christine, Leslie, and me.
We then protested with the others outside. We sang “This Land Is Our Land” and gave interviews to multiple press outlets there. We stood in solidarity. Then Shawna Heffernan from National Nurses United joined us, and we decided to march away to the protest in FDR Park. We met Jill Stein in our subway car, and I had a good conversation with her.
Once above ground, we saw the protest ahead was cornered into what looked like a trap for arrests. So we sat that out at a tiny Philly cheese steak diner and talked with non-delegates about what happened at the convention, including the shameful Nevada state convention. Then my husband, Donald Prather, joined us.
We then decided to go home, as it was quite late and everyone was exhausted. (And as far as I know, the arrest trap still existed.) We were dripping sweat from the intense heat and I was feeling faint from many hours without food and little water. Don and I tried to eat at the TGIF in the hotel and were never served or waited on. After 15 minutes of being ignored, we walked out. I went to bed in great exhaustion, pain, and hunger.
I finally had breakfast food the next morning and met up with other staunch Bernie supporters in our delegation. They had attended our morning meeting when we get credentials and updated us on the continuing dismissiveness from the state party of not understanding (or pretending to not understand) why their treatment of Bernie delegates and supporters has been continually non-uniting and corrupt – that dismissiveness despite the voices of protest from our staunch Bernie delegates attempting to explain.
I am completely exhausted and need a day to sleep, eat, relax and try to regain my strength for returning to the Hillaryfest the last day of the convention. I did cast my vote for Bernie and have done what my conscience has called me to do as an elected Bernie delegate. The conscience was always there, and Bernie gave me the strength and courage finally to stand up for what I believe and to speak out about injustice to others and to those of us who steadfastly believe in Bernie’s revolution of social justice. That strength and courage to follow my conscience is why I have worked hard for Bernie for so long now, why I ran for Bernie delegate, why I will not vote for Hillary (but will vote for Jill Stein if she makes it onto the Nevada ballot or else “none of the above”), why I voted for Bernie in the second morning’s paper ballot of convention delegates, why I walked out and protested, why I gave interviews to the press, and why the third day I knew I must rest to go on to fight another day.
I thank all of you who truly follow your conscience and do not act out of ego but out of love, whether you agree with my views or not. I thank all of you who sent love and support across so many, many miles. I thank all of you who believed in me to vote for me for Bernie delegate from Nevada’s second congressional district. I thank all of you who believed in me to contribute to my fundraiser to get to Philly. I thank all of you who are praying and sending love and good vibes. Bernaste. The revolution has only just begun.
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