There won’t be cheering crowds. No balloon drops. No demonstrations of delegates wearing goofy hats and festooned with buttons of all sizes, colors and slogans.
No. The Democratic National Convention is going to be a “virtual” event with speakers talking to the nation from their own living rooms, or their dens, or their basements.
What has to happen at this event, in my humble view, is not unique to this uniquely delivered political event. What we need is to hear a vision for the future from presidential nominee Joe Biden, from vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris and from the assortment of speakers who will talk to us over the course of the next four days.
You see, that element has existed in political conventions going back through the history of our great and beloved republic.
I do not expect to hear a futuristic vision from Donald Trump, the Republican whose party convention occurs next week. Trump is trading on division and disunity, on distrust of others and on fear. I look for him to keep beating that drum all the way to the election.
What’s left for Democrats? They have to lay out a plan for how they intend to fix what Trump has damaged. Trump has wrecked our international alliances; he was impeached over his attempts to bribe a foreign leader for dirt on Joe Biden; he has sought to dismantle environmental protections; Trump has threatened to deport U.S. residents who came here as children because their parents sneaked into the country without proper documentation.
The Democrats’ strategy is as traditional as any part of this nominating process that hasn’t been altered by the coronavirus pandemic. They need to speak plainly and honestly to Americans who will tune in.
I will be one of them. I am awaiting a message of hope and revival and I damn sure don’t need a cheering crowd to persuade me to prefer their message over the fear-mongering that will come from Donald Trump.