Congratulations to Clinton; and thanks to Gabbard, too

Congratulations to Hillary Clinton for being chosen by Democrats as their White House nominee Tuesday night. She becomes the first woman to lead a major political party into the general election. Say what you will about her, let’s give credit where it due. This is one tough, smart woman. Most might wilt under the fire and criticism she’s endured.

While Republican White House nominee Donald Trump commanded most of the headlines leading up to the conventions for Republicans and Democrats, this is a landmark achievement by Clinton.

It was nearly 100 years ago, on Aug. 18, 1920, that the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution granted American women the right to vote. Certainly, no one then, or no one even 20 years ago, would have predicted there would be a women nominated by Democrats as their White House nominee.

Another woman stood out at the convention on Tuesday, that being Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.

Now, she stated her support for Clinton’s rival, Bernie Sanders months ago. One would expect, given Sanders’ speech Monday in which he called for the party to support Clinton, that the party’s leaders would listen. Those in politics tend to support and reward those who support them. And since it was clear Clinton would be receiving the nomination, one would expect Gabbard to change her tune, be the dutiful Democrat and align herself with the obvious choice.

She did not. She gave a nomination speech in support of Sanders.

That might surprise some. It might not surprise others. They know Gabbard speaks her mind and shares her opinion, regardless of how popular it might be. She was in the minority in opposing the GMO labeling bill that the House and Senate approved. That she would hold her course is what we’re come to expect from Gabbard. She is one who visited Kauai and dove in the waters to see the coral reefs for herself. She is the one who wrote to the military, questioning the impact of its actions on marine life.

While her words were in support of Sanders, they could apply to all of us as we consider the future of this country and what we can for it.

“This is a movement of love.

Love which calls us to care for families torn apart by our criminal justice system…

to care for folks whose jobs have vanished because of destructive trade deals…

to care for those barely scraping by at minimum wage or crippled by college debt…

to care about our environment and future generations…

to care about lives lost, lives ruined, and countries destroyed by counterproductive regime change wars…

to care for our veterans who face unacceptable delays and inadequate care.

This movement of love and compassion is bigger than any one of us… it speaks to our nation’s conscience, to our hearts.

Such love opens our eyes to the truth that every hungry child is my child…

every worker seeking the dignity of a job is my neighbor…

every senior citizen in need of care is my parent…

an attack on anyone because of race, religion, or sexual orientation is an attack on all of us.

It’s when we care for each other—choosing inclusion and love over division and hatred—that this great country is at its greatest.

Let us draw inspiration from the words of Mahatma Gandhi: “A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.”

My friends, because this is a movement fueled by love, it can never be stopped or defeated.”

Good words. Not just to read, but to live by. Thank you. Rep. Gabbard.

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