By Bob Garrison
Dr. Raul Ruiz! Drop the “Dr.”, and the name brings to mind a vaudeville comic or a Cuban band leader (“…starring Raul Ruiz and His Maracas!”) On the other hand, with those plump cheeks and sparkling eyes, he should have a puppet on one hand and show girl on his knee. He is delightfully comely. But that’s the least of it.
Talk about the American Dream. Ruiz went from being raised in a trailer park in Coachella to higher education at Harvard. In fact, he’s Harvard’s only Latino to walk away with 3 medical degrees. Now he wants to transition from saving lives as a doctor to improving lives as a member of Congress. It is a moving American story. Hey, I’m thinking Abe Lincoln splitting logs.
And look who Raul is coming up against? Mary Bono Mack, of course. Her story is no more usual than his. From being a bar maid in Palm Springs to marrying a rich and famous singer and TV star, Sonny Bono, who became Mayor of Palm Springs and finally a member of Congress. Sadly, he died while skiing when he was high. High drama.
Mrs. Bono Mack maneuvered herself into being appointed to her husband’s congressional seat, and went on to new boyfriends and then a new political marriage. She’s successfuly accrued the needed power and moneyed support to keep the position.
I have followed news of Madame Bono Mack off and on for years, but mostly to shame her for failing to tame her stubborn hair, which has a history of looking remarkably like the straw end of a broom. Alas, that pleasure has recently been lost. Apparently, she found a wizard to do her hair, because lately she looks (at least in her publicity pictures) svelte. Not long ago, her picture appeared in the Desert Sun and she looked mature and glamorous. Drat! Mary’s hair used to be great fun.
Anyway, it’ll be a fun campaign, I’m rooting for the one with the Latino parents, and hope that young Ruiz grabs the gold ring. His background sounds like a verse from ”America the Beautiful.” He’s young, smart, sincere, unsophisticated, and he cures the sick. His parents were poor, but his life story is rich. Perhaps they reared an American hero.
Bono’s not bad, though she’s whittled the ‘suffering widow’ gig to the bone. She knows the ropes and how to pull the right strings. But no back story. No spacious skies or amber waves of grain. Nevertheless, the Widow Bono has carried on…and on…and on….
What Bono Mack didn’t see in her future was a young man who is already a hero among his patients and Harvard professors, with an educated head, a compassionate heart, and a killer smile, determined to serve the people.
At this short time, Ruiz must triple his receipt of campaign contributions to catch up to Bono, who has accumulated cash from her Republican friends. Thoughtful Democrats should help Raul out, especially the burgeoning Latino political community. The time is ripe for you to use your power in numbers.
Raul is one smart cookie (y dulce, tambien!). Your votes and a few bucks will make your voices heard, and make a difference in so many good ways. This is also a call to those old-time Democrats who enjoy exercising their democratic power for a Democratic candidate, as it is meant to be.