Customarily, a national political convention has several purposes—it
must establish the party’s platform, emphasize its differences in policy
and vision from the other party, and nominate its presidential
candidate. It must also fire up the base and leave the convention with
momentum. Here last week, the Democratic National Convention
succeeded on all these aims, and speaker after speaker took turns
stoking the crowd, creating frenzy, and putting their Republican
opponents’ feet to the fire.
In an impassioned speech that rocked the Democratic National Convention,
former President Bill Clinton proclaimed Wednesday night, "I know we're
coming back" from the worst economic mess in generations and appealed
to hard-pressed Americans to stick with Barack Obama for a second term
in the White House.
Civil Rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton, founder and president of the
non-profit organization, the National Action Network, can always be
counted on to address social injustice, especially in New York City. Now
he is focused on inner-city violence and has created a movement for
communities to "take back their streets" and create safe environments.