July 31, 2004: Headlines: Election2004 - Kerry: Speeches: Kith: Now, if Teresa Heinz Kerry had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be.

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Peace Corps Library: Election2004: Election2004 - Archive of Previous Stories: July 31, 2004: Headlines: Election2004 - Kerry: Speeches: Kith: Now, if Teresa Heinz Kerry had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be.

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-239-147.balt.east.verizon.net - 151.196.239.147) on Wednesday, August 18, 2004 - 3:22 pm: Edit Post

Now, if Teresa Heinz Kerry had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be.

Now, if Teresa Heinz Kerry had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be.

Now, if Teresa Heinz Kerry had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be.

Theresa Heinz Kerry: We can and we will.

31 July 2004, 10:52 AM

Why do so many speeches at this level read like second drafts? I want to mark up the transcripts and say ďHere, these sentences can be made parallel, and turn this one around to put the applause line at the end.Ē I liked Ms. Heinzí speech, and I admire Ms. Heinz, but another draft or two would have made it much better.

To start with, Iíll make a few general statements about the content and the tone. The most obvious thing is that it wasnít a Ďniceí speech, a Laura Bush or a Barbara Bush speech, or a Roz Carter speech, or even a Hilary Clinton speech. Eric Alterman called it ďbizarre from a political perspective.Ē I think I agree with him. It seemed to have a lot to do with what she wanted to say, and not much to do with who she wanted to say it to.

Her formative political experience was a loss, the fight against apartheid in the fifties. I donít know how that affects her, over time. Probably the second most formative was the death of her husband, and the subsequent disappearance of his wing of the Republican Party. I think she may well be pretty sour on politics, not in the sense of giving up, but in the sense of doing it, day by day, with a sour quip and a sour face. Just my thought. Also, remember that until the last few months she was never really Mrs. John Kerry, but rather the head of the Heinz Foundation. She never knew the John Kerry that weíve all been talking about so much, the war hero or the anti-war leader. She knew, and seems to have fallen in love with, the Senator, who has not been much on display. And, in addition, the party that everybody is vilifying is her Party: she finally changed her registration this year, but itís hard to believe that she thinks of herself as a Democrat at all. If she doesnít think of herself as a Republican, itís the last ten years of Republicans have betrayed her, and thatís another reason for the sour face.

OK, the speech itself is a bit of a mess. Itís got the obligatory where-Iím-from bit, which in her case is pretty complicated, but she gives it short shrift. Two paragraphs. No descriptions of the land she grew up in. Nothing about actually deciding to come to (or stay in) America. The stories she tells are elliptical, told as if we know them already, and you know, we donít.

Then thereís the defensive Ďdonít call me a bitchí bit. Now, I totally agree with her, here. Let me say it again, and in italics: I totally agree with her. Women with opinions are no more opinionated than men with opinions, and the language our culture uses to describe them is awful, demeaning, and vicious. Itís not just discriminatory, itís misogynistic, and someone should call us on it. But at the convention? Itís more profoundly negative than attacking the opposition; itís the wrong place to put the attention. She does try to turn it into a general pro-equality ďhear womenís voicesĒ bit, but it doesnít quite work.

Now, if she had done a segue directly from Africa to the Peace Corps, it would have worked very nicely, and the Peace Corps slides nicely into the meat of the speech. Itís Peace Corps America that Ms. Heinz chose to become a citizen of, clearly, and itís Peace Corps America that we are trying to be. Not just the compassion, although that is part of it, but the practical optimism, building houses and clinics and basketball courts.

Americans believed they could know all there is to know, build all there is to build, break down any barrier, tear down any wall. We sent men to the moon, and when that was not far enough, we sent Galileo to Jupiter, we sent Cassini to Saturn, and Hubble to touch the very edges of the universe at the very dawn of time. Americans showed the world what can happen when people believe in amazing possibilities.

Now we head into the refrain: We can, and we willÖ

* He believes we can, and we will, invent the technologies, new materials, and conservation methods of the future.

* We can, and we will, create good, competitive, and sustainable jobs while still protecting the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the health of our children, because good environmental policy is good economics.

* John believes that we can, and we will, give every family and every child access to affordable health care, a good education, and the tools to become self-reliant.

* John Kerry believes we must, and we should, recognize the immense value of the caregivers in our country

* With John Kerry as president, we can, and we will, protect our nationís security without sacrificing our civil liberties.

* In short, John believes we can, and we must, lead in the worldóas America, unique among nations, always shouldóby showing the face, not of our fears, but of our hopes.

* We can and we should join together to make the most of this great gift we have been given, this gift of freedom, this gift of America.

Now, yíall notice that sheís messed this up. There are four can/will, a must/should, a can/must, and a can/should. Why? Yes, there are slight shades of difference in meaning, but if you changed them all to can/will, they would work. Or, even better, start from the beginning with we must, we can, and we will. Anaphora doesnít work if you donít stick to it. And, of course, thereís the other ideaócould we flip the sentences, and put the repeated phrase at the end, so we could get a chant going? Maybe, maybe not. But itís a good phrase, we can and we will, and itís a shame to waste it. Particularly at the end of the speech:

Together we will lift everyone up. We have to. Itís possible. And you know what? Itís the American thing to do. Goodnight and God bless.

Or, in the third draft:

The American thing to do is to lift everyone up, everyone, together. We must. We can. And we will! Goodnight!

Just a thought.

,

-Vardibidian.





When this story was prepared, this was the front page of PCOL magazine:

This Month's Issue: August 2004 This Month's Issue: August 2004
Teresa Heinz Kerry celebrates the Peace Corps Volunteer as one of the best faces America has ever projected in a speech to the Democratic Convention. The National Review disagreed and said that Heinz's celebration of the PCV was "truly offensive." What's your opinion and who can come up with the funniest caption for our Current Events Funny?

Exclusive: Director Vasquez speaks out in an op-ed published exclusively on the web by Peace Corps Online saying the Dayton Daily News' portrayal of Peace Corps "doesn't jibe with facts."

In other news, the NPCA makes the case for improving governance and explains the challenges facing the organization, RPCV Bob Shaconis says Peace Corps has been a "sacred cow", RPCV Shaun McNally picks up support for his Aug 10 primary and has a plan to win in Connecticut, and the movie "Open Water" based on the negligent deaths of two RPCVs in Australia opens August 6. Op-ed's by RPCVs: Cops of the World is not a good goal and Peace Corps must emphasize community development.





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Story Source: Kith

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; Election2004 - Kerry; Speeches

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