“The People Yes”

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are the President and Vice President Elect. They won over 80 million votea, the most cast in a presidential election in history. Donald Trump, the loser, won 75 million votes. He continues to refuse to concede and has lost over 38 legal challenges in state district courts as well as the Pennsylvania appeals court. The judge in his long opinion said, “The voters decide the winners, not lawyers.” Biden has moved ahead, choosing a group of women and men who “look like America” for his cabinet and civil service positions.
I am reminded of the column I wrote after Barack Obama was elected . The first African American to win the office. Joe Biden was his Vice President. At that time, I drew upon the famous poem by Carl Sandburg, “The People Yes.” It is appropriate at this time as well.
Poets can express the human condition better than psychologists and historians. Carl Sandburg was such a poet. He wrote from Chicago in the first half of the 20th century about the American people — who we are, our struggles and what we strive for. His epic poem, “The People Yes” captures this moment in our history. Here are excerpts to illuminate what has happened to all of us .
“The people yes
The people will live on.
The learning and blundering people will live on.
They will be tricked and sold and again sold
And go back to the nourishing earth for rootholds,
The people so peculiar in renewal and comeback,
You can’t laugh off their capacity to take it.
The mammoth rests between his cyclonic dramas.
* * * * * * * *
The people so often sleepy, weary, enigmatic,
Is a vast huddle with many units saying:
“I earn my living.
I make enough to get by
And it takes all my time.
If I had more time
I could do more for myself
And maybe for others.
I could read and study
And talk things over
And find out about things.
It takes time.
I wish I had the time.
* * * * * * *
Man is a long time coming.
Man will yet win.
Brother may yet line up with brother:
This old anvil laughs at many broken hammers.
There are men who can’t be bought.
The fireborn are at home in fire.
The stars make no noise.
You can’t hinder the wind from blowing.
Time is a great teacher.
Who can live without hope?
In this darkness with a great bundle of grief
The people march.
In the night, and overhead a shovel of stars for keeps, the
People march:
“Where to? What next?”
…………………………………………………………………………..Joyce S. Anderson

New York Times: Biden Beats Trump

New York Times, Sunday, November 5, 2020:

BIDEN BEATS TRUMP  RACE FINALLY CALLED AFTER RECORD TURNOUT;  CHAOTIC TERM ENDS WITH RARE INCUMBENT LOSS.

These Banner headlines were above the picture of Former Vice President Biden addressing the nation with Kamala Harris standing a few feet away on his right.   “Harris Will Become The Country’s First Female Vice President” was next to the picture. 

The days since Election Day on Tuesday, November 3, found millions  of Americans glued to TV watching the results coming in from the states. Throughout Wednesday, Thursday , Friday and Saturday….we watched the big boards and numbers mounting in different states.   It became clear that Joe Biden and Donald Trump were each receiving millions of votes.   This would not be a landslide for either candidate.   There were in person votes and those that had been mailed in.  All had to be counted by teams of workers in every state.

 Due to the pandemic, many states e.g. New Jersey had mailed ballots to all their registered voters.  We filled ours in early as did millions of others.   Lines grew in states where voters wanted to bring their completed forms to the appropriate drop box locations.  It should be noted that certain states like Texas limited the number of boxes.  Texas stood out with their decision to have ONE BOX in Harris County that included Houston with over a million people.  Republicans controlled this decision.  

This election will have the largest participation of registered voters ever.   Joe Biden won the popular vote and the electoral college vote.  The final count has not been reached as I  write.  He won over 74 million votes to Donald Trump’s 70 million.   Biden won the Blue Wall of Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania which put him over the top in the Electoral College.  270 is the number that is required of the winner.  He won other states to reach 290.

There are still several states where counting  has not been completed : Georgia,  North Carolina . Biden is leading in Georgia ; Trump in North Carolina.  Georgia has 16 votes  which would give Biden a final count of 3 06.

Sunday was a day when celebrations erupted in cities across the country.  Joe Biden had been confirmed  president elect and hundreds of thousands of American men , women and children were in the streets  dancing,  singing, displaying their excitement and approval.   The TV coverage was in New York, San Francisco,  Miami, Chicago and D.C.  It lasted into the evening when Biden and Harris spoke to the nation.  She wore a white pant suit in remembrance of the Suffragists and said,  “ I have the great honor to introduce the President Elect of The United States, Joe Biden”  The Crowd erupted in thunderous applause.   He spoke of healing the nation  and said, “ I will be the president of those who voted for me and those who did not.”

His entire speech stressed healing the divisions in the nation and conquering the Covid19 pandemic. At the close,  Fireworks exploded in the sky spelling out the number 46 for his presidency  of the United States.  Then he was joined by his wife, Dr. Jill Biden and Kamala by her husband.  The four raised their arms in front of the stage in the traditional close to an acceptance speech. 

Epilogue:

It is now Tuesday and Donald Trump has refused to concede the election.  McConnell  and most Republican senators are supporting him in his right to investigate fraud at the polls.   This shocking event has never happened before in our presidential elections.   The fraud commission Trump created after he was elected ended in no findings.  He had lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton and that will remain on record.

We are facing a strange time during the weeks before January 20 when Joe Biden  and Kamala Harris will be sworn in before millions of rejoicing Americans and the world.  Usually the current president rides with the president elect.  It  would be fitting for Joe Biden to invite Barack Obama as his riding companion. 

While the ceremony takes place, the tradition is that the White House staff prepares the living quarters completely in the hours before the  new president and his wife return.  If Trump refuses to leave, it would be perfect if Colonel Alexander Vindamin and his twin brother also a Colonel who worked in the White House, perp march Trump out.  That reverses the way they had to leave.  Seems appropriate to me.

………………………………Joyce S. Anderson