Anyone raised in Mississippi knows that when a frustrated mother asks a mischievous child, “Are you done,” she’s really saying, “You’re done.” That’s exactly how many Mississippians are beginning to feel with this entire “McDaniel won’t concede” brouhaha.
Maybe what’s more interesting is the way we’re all beginning to behave. Supporters on both sides, but especially on Team McDaniel, are defending him as though he’s their own grandson. I get it – I had a fireball Maw Maw too. (To my mother’s horror, I can remember my Maw Maw Nellie telling me that sex was like candy, once you had it, you always want more. That was her way of saying, “Don’t do it.” On the other hand, I felt my own horror when my mother told my son that he needed to “keep the pony in the barn”. That was her own way of saying “Don’t do it.” I can’t wait until I have grandkids.) Again though, it goes back to the southern women. We’re vicious when we need to be and typically, we can always find a way to stir the pot, but we can – and should – keep perspective. And perspective is exactly what’s missing in the political back and forth that continues to unfold in Mississippi. The minute we forget that it’s politics, everything changes. We’re doing battle with our neighbors. We’re declaring war on Twitter and Facebook. And for what?
Two men with more money than God who really don’t give a rat’s ass what any of us think? Contrary to this misconception that it’s the constituents they answer to, the one dynamic that matters least are those constituents. I don’t care which party has your loyalty. It has always been and will always be politics.
The reality is, despite dragging this out for all of these weeks, McDaniel has not used this opportunity to further his commitment. He’s not reiterated what he will do for our state. Hell, he’s not even come out publicly unless it’s been for a small group of supporters who bothered to show up in his “Truth and Justice” tour (I still say that would’ve been a great name for one of Bon Jovi’s tours in the ‘80s). Don’t believe me? Go take a look at his Facebook wall and his Twitter feed. There are tons of quotes he’s posted from other people (including an 11 year old kid), links to columns or blogs written by supporters (including those with questionable ethics) and various graphics created by others. Where are his reiterations of his specific commitments? Where has he said, “My goal is…”? He’s quick to provide links to what others have written about race baiting, but what has he said? I’ve said it before – anyone who’s not the only thinker in their own mind is dangerous.
The crazy thing is, I had made up my mind early on that I’d support McDaniel. It wasn’t because I believed Cochran was not right, I figured it was time someone else step up to the plate. Because I believe we all have a responsibility to ourselves and ultimately, our children, I dug a bit deeper and learned that McDaniel didn’t represent my beliefs. That resulted in a huge disagreement with a family member who I adore and we’ve yet to find a way to put it behind us. I’ve lost friends because of it.
The way I see it, if The Dixie Chicks and President Bush can find a way to co-exist in Texas, surely Mississippians can find a way past it, too. The challenge is getting the rest of these out of state folks out of the mix. And the question to McDaniel is, “Are you done?”
Oh, and by the way – no worries on usage rights of the photo. I checked – no broken laws.