Blocking Bernie naysayers crucial to keeping one’s sanity, revolution’s momentum

I did it again.

I didn’t mean to, but I couldn’t help myself.

My first mistake was logging onto Facebook just hours after Bernie Sanders lost four of five contests to Hillary Clinton yesterday. I was hoping to gain some wisdom and solace from fellow Berners.

A fellow Berniecrat posted that he would unfriend anyone who suggested that Bernie was done.

That’s when I saw it.

In the comment thread of his post, a young woman — I’ll call her Mimi — wrote that it was time for Berners to “face reality” and put their efforts behind Ms. Eventuality.

“I love Bernie, but he just can’t win,” Mimi wrote.

Now Mimi and I had been “friends” for more than six months, although I have never met her in-person. That’s typical of Bernie supporters, who network on-line with other Berners to get the word out about their guy.

I took a deep breath after reading Mimi’s comment.

My rational self whispered, “Don’t respond. Just scroll past.”

But my intense, take-no-prisoners, Bernie-loving self screamed, “Oh, hell no!”

And before I knew it, I had sent Mimi a private message: “Hey, dumbass….#FeelTheBern.”

I blocked her immediately afterward.

I’m not proud of my response. It’s something a 12 year old would do, not a 47-year-old professional woman.

And it’s certainly not something Bernie would condone. But I’m so incredibly tired of hearing the naysayers. In fact, I’m downright exhausted.

I have been rooting for Bernie every since he announced his presidential run last spring, and I have heard ever since — from media pundits, Establishment candidates, colleagues , and some friends — that he doesn’t stand a chance.

His announcement last April was met with smirks and a healthy amount of eye rolling. Corporate media-types dismissed Bernie as an old Socialist who couldn’t compete with the Clinton machine.

“He’s a nice man, but …” was the media consensus.

Then the press blackout went into high gear. They virtually ignored Bernie throughout the summer, even though his rallies were drawing thousands and his campaign began raising eye-popping amounts of money.

Then primary season began. Bernie virtually tied Clinton in the Iowa caucus and trounced her by 22 points in the New Hampshire primary.

I was thrilled.

Certainly people are going to take Bernie seriously now, I thought. I was wrong.

Instead, the media downplayed Bernie’s strong showing at the polls and characterized it as a fluke. And average citizens took their cue. Friends and colleagues tempered my enthusiasm with comments of, “We’ll see.”

On to Nevada, where Bernie kept the race competitive. Yet still the doubters continued their chatter, getting louder after each Clinton victory in the deep South.

When I explained to friends and colleagues that Bernie was expected to struggle early in the South but make up ground later in the West, most looked at me with pity. Some became frustrated and told me I wasn’t facing facts.

But the problem was I had the facts and they didn’t. I turned to social media and devoured political articles on everything from media bias to the difference between a delegate and a superdelegate.

I wanted to be informed. I could see that the corporate media wasn’t even close to giving voters the full story on the candidates, their records, and the political process itself.

And I wanted to take that information and share it with as many people as possible.

I soldiered on as best I could in the face of claims that Clinton was more “electable” and had amassed an insurmountable lead over Bernie in delegates. I tried to correct these inaccuracies among friends, both in-person and on-line, and among strangers I met while impromptu canvassing.

The process left me emotionally and physically spent.

Finally the vote came to Michigan, my home state, on March 8. Although Clinton was forecast to win The Mitten State, Bernie edged her out by two percentage points.

Certainly people are going to take Bernie seriously now, I thought. I was wrong.

Many, in the real and virtual worlds, continued to write him off. They explained that Bernie’s margin of victory was small and his raising $5 million within 24 hours of his Michigan win would not be enough to save him from political exile.

And then yesterday happened. And then I read Mimi’s comment.

I should have done what I normally do: calmly and rationally explain that Mimi is incorrect. Hillary has not accumulated even half the 2,383 delegates needed to secure the Democratic nomination. We won’t know who the nominee will be until after June 7, the date on which the California primary takes place.

About 300 delegates separate her and Bernie, not counting superdelegates, who can and often do change their votes as contests wear on. California, which Bernie is expected to win, has over 500 delegates at stake, and New York, also Bernie-friendly turf, has just under 300.

With two wins, Bernie could take the lead. It’s not fantasy, it’s fact.

But I’m tired of explaining this to the Mimi’s of the world, and everyone else.

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