Last month, on the Interstate highway between Gold Creek and Drummond, transporting a fellow Montanan to Seattle to attend to her daughter’s dying, I changed a flat right front tire on my car. The new Michelin had a quarter-inch slit in its sidewall. I kidded with a passing trucker, friendly enough to stop, even after he said he’d not have taken the trouble, had he seen the Obama 2008 bumper-sticker I got with the car, bought used two years ago. But, when we stopped to buy a replacement tire in Missoula, another customer kept staring over my shoulder at the bumper sticker, saying “you can’t be serious.” He aggressively stuck his face into mine as I walked past into the tire store.
I’m not a bumper sticker kind of person, so maybe this happens all the time, but I don’t like it. I’ve resisted bullying in school, on the job, and in the military. Bullying creates the atmospherics for a small clique to do any outrageous thing they please to or about someone, without being challenged by the cowed.
Obama lost in Montana, after fielding 80 paid staffers; there’s now one, and our folksy Governor Schweitzer tells us our President has no chance in his state. Obama stickers are hard to get; there’s none at Montana’s State Democratic Headquarters. Who says bullying doesn’t work? Yet, I’m pushing back, with a double-stickered O’Bamobile.
John B. Driscoll