“Rhapsody in Blue” on Election Day 2020
By Lawrence Pfeil, Jr.
I post this today at “O Dark Hundred” just before I leave for the election site where I’ll spend the next 17+ hours serving as a poll worker. We have been desperately waiting for this day since 2016, and this day is the reason I became a poll worker two years ago. We knew four years ago there was trouble ahead and had to do more; it’s why I started theOUTfront. But none of us imaged witnessing destruction to the very foundation of our country let alone the derelict leadership during a pandemic that’s infected more than 9M Americans killing 231K+ people. Yet, here we are.
The solution is obvious and basic to a democracy. Elect a new president. The time has come for the people’s voice to heard. Today is our day!
Over the past year, millions of people all across the diverse spectrum of our nation have come together in unity: putting in endless hours of work, using their creativity, showing up, sacrificing, and making a difference to bring change and to save America. By choosing to embrace each other with compassion, hope, and dignity, we have done extraordinary work together!
But the truth is, we don’t know what this day will bring or the days after. Unscalable walls have been installed around The White House and I saw businesses being boarded up on the streets of New York City near my home yesterday…over the outcome of the election… in The United States of America? It’s scared the hell out of me.
He wants us to be afraid, to fear the chaos he craves.
But I’m not afraid to go work as an election poll worker today. I’m proud and I’m proud to be part of the incredible American coalition of talented, tenacious, and tough people who have been standing up and fighting back in this election. But before I go to my polling site, I want share one of my favorite pieces of music, “Rhapsody in Blue” by George Gershwin.
It’s especially meaningful on election day as its original title was “American Rhapsody” until his brother, Ira suggested he change it. Written in 1924 by the son of immigrant parents who fled persecution in their homeland, Gershwin combined both classic orchestral composition with the new jazz composition created by Black American musicians.
“I heard it as a sort of musical kaleidoscope of America, of our vast melting pot, of our unduplicated national pep, of our metropolitan madness.” – George Gershwin
Before you set out on your Election Day 2020, be kind to yourself and experience the joy of an American, “Rhapsody in Blue.”