Look Up

06 Aug Dean 2004 MeetupWhat kind of crowd do you expect to find at a political rally held in a trendy bar located in New York’s too-cool-for-school Lower East Side? It would be a safe bet to guess that you’d come across mostly Caucasian, mostly youthful and mostly well-educated voters, and that’s more or less what I encountered at last night’s Dean 2004 Meetup.

Of course, this is what worries me the most about the Dean candidacy: its appeal is so in tune with the aspirations of ‘urban elites’ that it will leave the rest of the nation cold. Looking around at the crowd yesterday, all armed with shoulder sacks, digital cameras and US$6 cocktails, it would have been very, very difficult to argue that Dean’s chances between the coasts would amount to very much.

All of which might have been a function, simply, of geography. Forget for a moment the fact that minorities, agricultural and manufacturing workers, and lower-income families were sorely, sorely under-represented last night, and what remained was a moving forty minutes of political rallying.

06 Aug Dean 2004 Meetup

Because of the bar’s awkward setup, the Dean speakers (whose names I didn’t catch, which right away disqualifies this report as anything close to journalism) had to address the crowd from the balcony level. The effect was a sea of young, urban eyes looking upward. It was quite dramatic, and there were thrilling moments during the rally when I felt a palpable sense of possibility flood the room. I felt deep down in my bones that Howard Dean has a chance to correct this country’s course.


One Comment

  1. That’s a great shot.

    Dean’s progress, as I’ve been following on your site and a few others, is an interesting one, as most of the people I know (similar to the people who attended your meetup) are also supportive or know of Dean and are all ready to vote for him come Election time.

    I am curious as to what non-urban folk (and I mean that in a good way) think of Dean, if they do at all.

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