I set out from Orange County, CA this morning on my way to the DNC in Charlotte. My first leg from OC to Dallas was pleasant. I sat next to Rick and Patti, a middle-aged couple from Arkansas on their way home from visiting their daughter in Anaheim. We got to talking about why I was going to Charlotte. Rick said he was a conservative, but Patti likened herself to more of a libertarian. However, when she chastised me for referring to the “Affordable” Healthcare Act as Obamacare I knew that wasn’t entirely true. We had an interesting conversation and I shared with her the truth about universal healthcare as I experienced it growing up in Canada. Patti said she felt it was a tragedy that so many people in our country lacked insurance. I explained I shared her concern, but felt putting the government in charge of anything to do with your health was a big mistake. After all, would you trust anyone at the DMV to make the right decisions regarding your cancer treatment? Obamacare basically puts DMV employees in charge of the purse strings that control your health care. Patti agreed that was disturbing, given that Rick had recently beat prostate cancer. In the end we both agreed that it is up to each of us individually to do more for our struggling neighbors instead of shirking that duty off to a bloated, corrupt bureaucracy.
As our plane landed we said our goodbyes and Rick and Patti wished me luck on the rest of my journey. Dallas to Charlotte was largely uneventful, save one baby who screamed bloody murder for the first 20 minutes of the flight! Thankfully she pooped out and we all breathed a sigh of relief (mom especially, I’m sure). I arrived on time and in good spirits. My first stop was the car rental place. My shuttle driver was a gentleman named Phil. I asked Phil how things were going in and around Charlotte. “Oh boy”, he said with a sigh. “We’re all glad for the business but if I’m being honest I can’t wait until this week is over.” I giggled a bit when Phil said “I admit, I’m a conservative, but I don’t trust any of these politicians”, almost apologetically. I asked what the vibe was in Charlotte; were people happy to be hosting the DNC? “Charlotte is a bright blue spot in a red area of the state. People are happy. But this week is going to be tough for all of us”. At the car rental I was greeted by a clearly frustrated young man and I waited patiently as he finished serving the couple in front of me. When I asked him how his day was going he rolled his eyes and said “Crazy. I mean, I love Obama but all these Democrats from the coasts get on my nerves!” I asked him why, and he responded “Because they act like they know everything! They think we’re slow, dumb southerners. Gets on my nerves! The New Yorkers are worse than the ones from L.A., but they’re all annoying”. I certainly agree that many people from our two major coastal cities have a tendency to be quite snobbish about those of us who live in the rest of the country, but as I talked to this young man I found myself becoming a bit annoyed. Should you really be talking about your disdain for customers to other customers? It might not be a glamorous job, but it’s work. There are a lot of folks out there who would take this man’s troubles for a paycheck.
Once I got the car I headed into Charlotte to meet up with tea party leader Earl Phillips and his group. They were screening “They Come to America”, a documentary on illegal immigration. You should see that. You’ll wish you hadn’t, but still…you should watch it. We finished the film, chatted about the upcoming schedule for LibertyStock 2012 and made plans to meet up tomorrow.
After that I headed to my hotel, just outside of the city where I write to you now. Tomorrow looks to be a crazy day for Charlotte, with rain/thunder showers on the horizon. So far my plan is to head toward the convention center and see what trouble I can find. I’ll be updating my Twitter feed all day. You can follow me @kiradavis422 for all the latest and I’ll wrap up things tomorrow evening when I get back to the hotel. Stay tuned!
crossposted at kiradavis.net