Of Heroes, Sheroes and Choices Before Us

We are six days from the South Carolina Democratic primary. Bernie Sanders took New Hampshire, and Hillary Clinton won Nevada. Both are at a virtual tie in Iowa. Super Tuesday — with 12 primaries in varying southern states, as well as Massachusetts and Minnesota — looms before us.


I still haven’t made a decision on who to vote for. But before we discuss voting preferences on the Democratic side in 2016, I want to go over the last time we faced such a period of social momentum: the 1960s.

I have been lucky enough to witness five Democratic presidents in office. During the last Uranus-Pluto aspect of the 1960s, the Civil Rights Movement was the social spur in the side of the establishment. President Lyndon Baines Johnson, or LBJ, strong-armed congressmen and senators to yield to vote for legislation creating the Great Society. Under his administration civil rights was signed into law banning racial discrimination in housing, public facilities, interstate commerce and the workplace. Republicans weren’t as rabid as they are now, and Democrats were far more conservative then.

Under Johnson, public broadcasting, Medicare, Medicaid, aid to education, the arts, urban and rural development, public services, and the “War on Poverty” was started. The Voting Rights Act banned certain requirements in southern states used to disenfranchise African Americans. With passage of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, immigration was reformed, removing all racial origin quotas and replacing them with national origin quotas.

From today’s lens, it was a miracle that a former senator from Texas (a southern state) was able to move legislation to bring about the Civil Rights Act and Medicare. But the miracle had to have public pressure from below to make the rafters of Congress shake and make progress. Johnson was strongly supported by his own party and was assisted in part by the growing economy fueled by World War II and the Cold War.

The world LBJ created with his legislation became the third rail — an integral fixture of American government along with Social Security. This is the foundation that the Republican Party — slowly and from the ground up — has been working to dismantle. It started with the tax revolt that paved the way for the Reagan Era, the chipping away of voting rights, and even disabling a progressive agency started by the Nixon Administration — the EPA.

At every turn, Republicans took advantage of their time in the White House and Congress to nominate Supreme Court Justices who reflected their conservative aspirations. With each appointment, they achieved greater mainstream viability for their views and agenda — while us poor, dirty hippies and black and brown folks faded into the background, or were sent to prison.

Which brings us to today, 2016, with all of us pushed against the wall. Even with a Democratic President in his last year in office, we have a Republican majority in Congress — and now, with Scalia’s death, a deadlocked Supreme Court. This is a structure not built to last; instability is imminent. If the push is not from the inside, the outside will do the work. Therefore, the use of the word “revolution” as used by the Sanders campaign is something we cannot take lightly.

Not with the forces we are pushing out against. The conservative movement started slowly, assembling after Nixon’s resignation to prevent that from ever happening to a Republican president again. That movement is now a powerful, established base that has not only gerrymandered congressional districts — with the aid of a conservative Supreme Court — but infiltrated school districts, governor’s offices, city councils, libraries, commissions, as well as local and regional courts.

Bill Clinton’s impeachment in 1998 was a coup d’etat that Republicans hope to repeat again in 2016 with Hillary’s emails and Benghazi brouhaha. With Sanders, all they have to do is touch a filament on this spider web they have woven with the message of “socialist” to keep the whisper campaign against him hot, scaring the bejeezus out of gun-toting, Bible-beating conservatives in small towns across the US.


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There is a reason why the current Democratic leadership — the Democratic National Committee (DNC) — is as wary of Sanders as the nominee as the Republican National Committee is of Donald Trump. Trump has the charisma and money to buy the election and screw the base that Republicans took decades to build. There is a Republican majority in Congress to support him.

Sanders followers are highly wary of the DNC because they represent the corrupt establishment. Yet it is there the foundation of a Democratic agenda and platform, built by Howard Dean, can take place in congressional, senate, regional and local elections. Ground up. It is there that a necessary congressional majority can be built for either Democratic nominee. Will the Democrats be as splintered as the Republicans are becoming? Time will tell.

A revolution needs everything. From sewing needles to yard signs, weekly organizing meetings to coffee, cookies and pizza for phone bankers to make things happen. And not just for presidential elections, but for midterms, governor’s races, city councils, and government commissions. Not just this year but next. We have a lot of work ahead of us, and enthusiasm can get it started; but persistence must sustain it if we want to see the changes we yearn for now.

So my choice today is to see what happens in South Carolina and the rest of the states next Tuesday. My choice is to see who remains standing so that together we can start a long march down the road of sanity to bring this nation and planet to the future we all deserve.

This entry was posted in Columnist, Fe-911 on by .

About Fe Bongolan

Planet Waves writer Fe Bongolan lives in Oakland, California. Her column, "Fe-911," has been featured on Planet Waves since 2008. As an actor and dramaturge, Fe is a core member of Cultural Odyssey's "The Medea Project -- Theater for Incarcerated Women," producing work that empowers the voices of all women in trouble, from ex-offenders, women with HIV-AIDS, to young girls and women at risk. A Planet Waves fan from almost the beginning of Eric's astrology career, Fe is a public sector employee who describes herself as a "mystical public servant." When it comes to art, culture and politics, she loves reading between the lines.

3 thoughts on “Of Heroes, Sheroes and Choices Before Us

  1. Barbara Koehler

    Fe, Fe, Fe, you say “it was a miracle that a former senator from Texas (a southern state) was able to move legislation to bring about the Civil Rights Act and Medicare.” It WAS a miracle. . from a general perspective anyway. Bless you for this treatise on how (in a nutshell) the Republicans surreptitiously have been sucking the life blood out of our gains during the last 50 years.

    You say that the LBJ miracle had to have public pressure to make the rafters shake, and so it will always be. Unless. . . . .

    Miracles can still happen and they will still need Public Pressure if they are to be enacted into Law in the USA. That is what is possible now in this unpredictable period where the outer planets rule our every mood and action. Take you time in making your decision. Release as much of any hesitancy which you can trace back to some fear. Believe in miracles; that’s what We are being asked to do.

    The 2010’s are linked to the 1960’s through the cycle of Uranus and Pluto which began in 1965 when they joined at 17+ Virgo and were sextile Neptune at 18+ Scorpio. When Obama was elected by Us in 2008, transiting Saturn (manifestation) at 17+ Virgo was opposite transiting Uranus (breakthrough) at 17+ Pisces. I’m saying that transiting Uranus was opposite the degree where he joined Pluto in 1965 and Saturn was conjunct it. Now transiting Uranus is quincunx that degree where he joined Pluto in 1965. They said in 2008 it was a miracle that a black man could be elected President of the USA. They call ’em miracles only because they don’t know (trust, understand) astrology.

    Lest we forget the role Neptune played in the Uranus-Pluto cycle initiation, a sextile enables and facilitates. Today the USA has been experiencing transits to it’s natal (Sibly) Neptune by the transits of Jupiter (increase) and the North Node (path to possibilities), not to mention Eris (discord). Transiting Neptune in Virgo (facts) has squared the U.S. Uranus in Gemini (glut of facts) off and on since last March. Right now the transiting Saturn and transiting Neptune are preparing us for the 2nd of their 3 squares to each other coming in June. All in the name of dissolving those divides we call borders and lines in the sand. They are working together, these outer planets Uranus, Pluto and Neptune, bringing us ever closer to achieving a new milepost in the path to Evolution.

    I said that transiting Uranus was quincunx the degree where he and Pluto met in 1965, which means he is also quincunx the 1965 Neptune in Scorpio who was sextile Uranus and Pluto in Virgo. This means he is at the apex of a time-span Yod or Finger of God. That position means adjustment is necessary. Apparently this adjustment requires some revolutionary energy, some breakthrough energy, some hell-raising energy. As miracles would have it, transiting Saturn (manifest) is trine transiting Uranus (breakthrough), although not exactly-exact until Christmas. Too late you think? Well, that’s because we are only human beings and don’t know what the outer planet gods know. It’s going to require a release of (what we think is) control, ie. Saturn, to make the leap of faith required.

    On 2016 election day transiting Saturn will be at 15+ Sagittarius, the same degree where he was when Justice Scalia died last weekend. Yeah. That’s the same degree that opposes the degree where Venus was occult the Sun in June 2012. It has something to do with Love. We need to give love a chance I sure that’s what it’s saying.

    As for miracles needing public pressure to make the rafters shake, well maybe if we really, really get out the voters this year, and 2 years from now, maybe we will just get ourselves a congress as well as a President that won’t require rafter-shaking anymore. I believe in miracles and I know you do too! Trust your highest consciousness to lead you where you must go Miss Fe.

    1. Fe Bongolan Post author

      As for miracles needing public pressure to make the rafters shake, well maybe if we really, really get out the voters this year, and 2 years from now, maybe we will just get ourselves a congress as well as a President that won’t require rafter-shaking anymore. I believe in miracles and I know you do too!

      You know, that’s what I am really looking for B. We need not only identify the Aragorn in this saga, but all of the warriors from the elvish, halfling and human kin on this one. The structure built to suppress took a long time to build. Its going to take some heavy lifting to not only topple over, but simultaneously build something better!

      Your astrological comment reads like music to me this morning. Something about those big planets give me comfort about the inevitability of cycles. we need to make sure the right impetus to energize action hits home with the right people. Go Neptune! Go Saturn!!

  2. Barbara Koehler

    Hey I need to correct myself. . . on election day in 2008 transiting Saturn was at 18+ Virgo, not 17+ Virgo. It was Jupiter at 17+ Capricorn that threw me off. I have no excuse for the mistake of saying Uranus was at 17+ Pisces when in fact he was at 18+ Pisces. Probably it’s that trans. Jupiter conjunct my Neptune. Still, the connection to the 1965 Uranus-Pluto conjunction (sextile Neptune) was in effect on that day we elected Obama.

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