The current political situation in this country has made for very strange times…. As a registered Democrat who is very unhappy that our President is Donald Trump, I am counting the days when we can get more Democrats into office that can take control of Congress and either impeach the President or do their best to keep him from destroying more of what he has already destroyed that was already great about America. I have no faith in the current Republican Congress who is afraid to stand up to this corrupt, bigoted, liar in the White House. I’ve never seen such ugliness in this country. So much hate. So much division.
I recently attended a reception for the First Lady of our state, Ann Scott, wife of our own Florida Governor, Rick Scott. Although it was sponsored by the Naples Republican Club of Naples Federated, I attended because I’m open minded and curious to hear what the local Republican spin is on things in Washington. No, that wasn’t really the primary reason I attended.
The primary reason I attended was a bit more shallow. She and I share the same name, although she spells her first name “Ann” and I spell mine “An”. In addition, on more than one occasion, when I have scheduled an appointment at a hair salon, or made a reservation at a restaurant, and check in saying “I’m An Scott”, I have been asked if I am “that Ann Scott”. To which, of course, I reply…no. “I’m the other An Scott”. I have been told at first glance I resemble the governor’s wife. I don’t see it other than we both appear to have the same shade of blonde hair and are not particularly tall women, but she is more slender. Since there was a time when we both apparently went to the same hair salon on Marco Island (I no longer go there), I would imagine, our color formulas must match. I believe that’s where the physical similarities end.
Beyond that meeting, attending this reception, was for me, unchartered territory. My neighbor, a fellow Democrat, whose husband, a Republican, is running as Country Commissioner, in our district, was attending this event, in support of her husband’s campaign… Ah, the things you do for love! She emailed me a link to make a reservation, in case I was interested in meeting the other Ann. I jumped at the opportunity.
At this lovely reception that included passed hors d’oeuvres and white wine, I was probably surrounded by most of the members of the Naples Womens Republican Club. My first observation was that it looked very white in that room; white and WASPY. I was later very surprised to learn that the President of the Naples Women’s Republican Club, is a woman of color. Also surprising was the fact that the current and past Presidents of the local NAACP chapter were present. But mostly, the room was a sea of white faces.
It was a very strange feeling. I felt like an infiltrator, a spy, if you will, assuming before arriving that I would have to listen to a lot of people praising our President and the “wonderful things” they believe he has done for our country. I heard none of that. In fact, as I eavesdropped on conversations, no one was talking about Donald Trump. No one was talking about the current immigration crisis at the borders and all the children being taken away from their parents and sent to old big box warehouses to be housed within caged walls with cushions on the floor and mylar blankets, quite possibly never seeing their parents again. No one that I overheard was talking about politics at all, in fact.
When Mrs. Scott spoke to the group, she was very pleasant and very engaging. She spoke that day, about how she and Governor Scott met and their lives together as a couple and later a family. She spoke about her love of children and the fact that she often visits schools all over the state and reads to children. The last part of her speech, was of course, reaching out, hoping that all would give her husband, the Governor, support as he embraced his run for Florida’s State Senator.
I wanted to ask questions, “from the other side”, if you will. I was hoping to learn more about her husband’s thoughts on issues that were important to me, things I had heard rumors he supported, like the privatization of Social Security and Medicare, Medicaid, that it is believed would reduce benefits. I had been coached by my husband, also a Republican, not to ask any questions about that. I still don’t understand why he didn’t want me to ask that question, but it was irrelevant because the First Lady took no questions. I guess it is for the best right now.
I am looking forward to hearing others speak about candidates in the upcoming elections. While I am a Democrat, I believe that we should elect candidates who are the best individuals for the job, not just because they are Republican or Democrat. However, in this particular election, “they” are saying that if Governor Scott wins the Senatorial slot over a Democrat, the Democrats would have a tough time taking back the Senate. They already have to take back two other Republican seats and hold all their vulnerable seats in states that heavily went for President Donald Trump in 2016 (Indiana, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota and West Virginia). I am still doing research on Governor Scott, his issues, his thoughts on what he’d do in Washington if he is elected. He may turn out to be the best person for the job, but what if the Democrats aren’t able to take back those other two seats… getting as many Democrats in office in this next election in November, as possible, is our only hope of changing this course this country is on.