All of the Above

450 disabled people attending Texas Democratic Party’s state convention?
450 disabled people attending Texas Democratic Party’s state convention?

Unlike Republicans, Texas Democrats just wanna be inclusive
by Susan Bankston

Just about every month in this column, I tell you why I am grateful not to be a Republican. I’ve even started a list of the main reasons why:

  1. Republican Congressvarmint Louie Gohmert complains that I’m intolerant of his intolerance. That makes me jittery enough to thread a sewing machine while it’s running.
  2. John Boehner’s color makes me think he poops Cheetos. That has totally ruined my ability to enjoy a very tasteful snack. I should sue him.
  3. Rick Perry thinks he can be president. He’s the only man I know who can strut sitting down.
  4. I don’t care how loudly and often you holler it, you’ll have more luck digging a ditch in the ocean than bringing down Hillary Clinton with Benghazi.
  5. Two words: Rush Limbaugh. Good God Almighty, that man is worse than 40 acres of rattlesnakes on the devil’s back porch.

Actually, there’s more than five. There’s exactly 2,311 reasons why I’m grateful not to be a Republican. However, I’ll stop at five, so I can tell you an absolutely true story that pretty much sums up why I am grateful to be a Democrat.

The Texas Democratic Party has a convention every two years. You get selected to go to this convention by attending your county convention and signing up.

This year, for the first time ever, Texas Democrats started signing up online. Which, by the way, is another reason I love Democrats—we don’t jump into things. For all we knew, this Internet crap would turn out to be a passing fad. We are a cautious people. Hell, we even keep our seat belts on in the car wash. Texas Democrats just decided that the odds are pretty good that the Internet is here to stay. You are now permitted to share this valuable information at will.

We Democrats try to celebrate diversity by electing people to attend our national convention who represent the entire state of Texas, not just the white guys at the country club. So we ask the conventioneers to help us identify which groups they are affiliated with: Hispanics, LGBTs, disabled Democrats, veterans, women, labor, and just about any other minority you can think of.

Each one of these groups caucuses (that’s political-speak for “meets”) at the state convention. By checking the boxes that apply to you, we can better judge how many people will attend each caucus.

When the list of state convention attendees and their caucus affiliations came out, I looked at the list of disabled people attending the state convention and—holy cow!—there were like 450 of them. We usually have about 30 people at our caucus. Then I kept looking, and some people who I knew for-damn-fact weren’t disabled were listed as being disabled.

So, I e-mail my friend Glen Maxey, who is generally knowledgeable about this stuff, and I say, “Since when are Joe Smith, Thelma Jones, Buck Frontage, and a whole mess of other people, including a couple of state representatives, disabled?” He e-mailed back, “Look at the LGBT list! 75 percent of the people coming are LGBT.” He was right.

When Glen first noticed this odd thing, he called a couple of the people that he knew weren’t LGBT and asked why they checked the box for the LGBT caucus.

Come to find out, we’re a bunch of box-checking fools. We’re damn Democrats. We are accustomed to supporting things. Republicans are against things. Democrats are for things. There ain’t no neutral on our gearshifts.

Democrats check all the boxes. Veterans caucus? Hell, you support veterans whether you’re a veteran or not. You support disabled people, so check that box, too! LGBT caucus? Hell, that check mark means I’ll be best man at a same-sex wedding and throw a party afterward if I’m asked to! I’m a damn Democrat. I support everybody!

And that is reason number 4,519 why I love Democrats: we pretty much just wanna hug ya.

So while our caucus list is about as useful as an airbag on a saddle, we’re having the convention anyway. It’s in Dallas on June 28, and all the cool kids will be there. Come on and join with us. We wanna give you a damn hug and put some bodacious in your walk.

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.



Susan Bankston

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.

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