by vivrant thang on obama phone banking experience and michigan fuckery
I had been complaining to my Twitter fam (where you should be following a sista if you want more updates than you get here!) about how much I was dreading the forced strongly suggested phone banking for Obama that I had to do at my 9-5.
In short, I’d rather stick two needles in each eye.
You know I’m down for the cause. I’d just strongly prefer to do anything else other than cold calling. It just takes me back to my college days and the one week I survived hawking lawn care services.
*shudders at the memory*
Besides, I know how I am when I am tricked into picking up the phone and a telemarker is on the other end. Nothing nice.
However, I had to take one for the team and do my part. Bottom line is, Obama will not win this thing without the full support of our folks. Real talk.
So they gassed our heads encouraged us by saying that our target group, Michigan retirees from our organization, had been polite overall, even when telling us and O Man to kick rocks.
Okay, good to know.
When I walked in for my shift, first thing I noted was that they had snacks. YES! I grabbed what I needed, sat down and got started. I felt good. Involved. Needed.
I should mention that my schedule was carefully and strategically chosen: 2:30 to 4. I knew it would be hit or miss.
Talked to several answering machines and left bright and sunny messages informing them of our proud support of O Man and telling them they bets to do the same if they want to keep reaping their retirement benefits should join us on Nov 4.
When I did get a live person, if their response was negative, it was in fact done politely. Okay, I can deal with that. There were a few people who told me about how they were personally involved in the campaign. Fantastic! One Detroit man proclaimed, “That’s my man!” Alright now! He’s ours too.
Should have known it was all a dream.
I had a funny feeling before I dialed the number. Gave my short spiel which ended by asking the man if I could count on his support on November 4.
“I wouldn’t vote for that ni99er for nothin!!”
I’m not naive by any stretch of the imagination so I know people have encountered worse, directly and indirectly. For me personally, I was done. A feeling of overwhelming sadness I just can’t explain immediately washed over me and stayed there until I closed my eyes last night. Call me fortunate, but I guess I’ve been sheltered.
Growing up in the inner city of Jersey City, NJ, spending my formative years in the burbs, attending college in North Carolina, and now residing in the DC Area for the past ten years have fortunately provided me with a “safe haven” from that kind of direct attack. Sure, many a pinch-nosed broad has looked at me cock-eyed, silently asking, “What is this niggra doing in our fine establishment?” I usually just give her the meanest side eye I can muster and keep on stepping. After all, she’s working for me while I’m in that store – if I choose to stay there that is.
Some might say this man was not directly calling me the “n” word but it sure as hell felt like it! And that shit didn’t feel good at all. I wonder how I would have reacted had he stayed on the phone. Of course we’re told not to engage in any hostile conversations. Would I have said eff all that and unleashed the angry black woman on him? Would my occasional passive-aggressive persona taken over? Don’t know.
I guess we may see next week if I decide to give this another try. Apparently, I may run into more of that as we continue trying to reach our members in this important battleground state since I woke up to hear about this on the news this morning.
Not surprising in the least.
How many days of this are left?
Funny thing is, when he wins it will be just the beginning. We have not even begun to see the hell we’re going to catch with a Black man in the White House.
It will be worth it to look at this all day: