The four-day, virtual Democratic National Convention (DNC) kicked off Monday night engulfed in a mood of depression, anti-Americanism, and little enthusiasm.
While this is the first virtual convention ever held by the Democrat Party, traditionally both the Democratic National Convention and Republican National Convention have been long-awaited events full of excitement. The tone for this year’s Democratic National Convention is no match.
Prominent topics that were discussed throughout the first night of the convention, which carried the theme “We the People,” included President Donald Trump, racism, and police brutality, all of which were highlighted in former first lady Michelle Obama’s speech.
“As George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and a never-ending list of innocent people of color continue to be murdered, stating the simple fact that a Black life matters is still met with derision from the nation’s highest office,” Obama said.
“Because whenever we look to this White House for some leadership or consolation or any semblance of steadiness, what we get instead is chaos, division, and a total and utter lack of empathy,” she continued.
“Our motto is, when they go low, we go high,” Obama added of those who disagree with her politically. “Let’s be clear: going high does not mean putting on a smile and saying nice things when confronted by viciousness and cruelty. Going high means taking the harder path.”
Other speakers on the first night of the low-energy convention included Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), who offered messages of support for Joe Biden and claimed there would be trouble if President Trump is reelected.
“At its most basic, this election is about preserving our democracy,” Sanders said, adding that “authoritarianism has taken root in this country” under the leadership of President Trump.
“As long as I am here, I will work with progressives, with moderates and, yes, with conservatives to preserve this nation,” Sanders claimed.
While taking jabs at President Trump, Klobuchar chose to focus on “unity” in America.
“Democrats, Independents and yes, many Republicans, have had enough of his divisiveness,” Klobuchar said. “Tonight, my friends, in contrast, we’ve heard a lot about how we can unite as Americans. About our shared values, our shared dreams, how we’ve come together in the face of crisis.” She went on to say:
We need a president for the workers who’ve lost their jobs because this the administration is selling American workers out — when we need to buy American. For the farmers and manufacturers and the people of rural America, who are sick and tired of reaping what he’s sown… We need a president for all of America.
A moment of silence for George Floyd was also put in place for the convention, and his family was honored by Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C.
“While we were peacefully protesting, Donald Trump was plotting,” Bowser said in a speech. “I knew if he did this to D.C., he would do it to your city or your town, and that’s when I said enough.”
Past conventions have featured upbeat performances with laughter and cheer and focused on prosperity for the American people. At the 1996 convention, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, along with other members of the Democrat Party, was filmed dancing to “The Macarena.”
In addition to Clinton showing off her dance moves in 1996, former President Barack Obama was filmed backstage at the 2016 convention dancing to Eminem’s song, “Lose Yourself.”
In 2016, President Trump’s delegates were filmed celebrating and dancing to mark the end of the Republican National Convention. Others in attendance were also filmed showing off their dance moves throughout the convention.
The second night of the Democratic National Convention will be held on Tuesday and is expected to offer a similar mood, with speeches by Former Acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), and Former President Bill Clinton.