The Lilith Blog

October 29, 2020 Abigail Fisher

A Nana for the Nation

By Abigail Fisher

Sylvia Fisher with her six grandchildren

You may remember Sarah Silverman rallying Jewish grandparents to vote blue by raving about Obama’s brisket in 2008. Silverman is far from the only one maximizing the untapped political power of Jewish grandparents. As November 3rd creeps up on us, political organizers have been coming up with new and creative ways to canvass for the Biden-Harris ticket, including the B”H meme and a “Bubbies for Biden” campaign wherein Jewish Bubbies and Zaydes from across the nation record short videos about why they’re voting for Biden. While these campaigns are important, no doubt, they ignore the grandparents who need no persuasion to help get out the vote.

My grandmother is one such example. She’s not a Bubbie for Biden, per se, but rather a Nana for the Nation. In addition to buying each of her grandchildren a Biden-Harris t-shirt, while a patient in the hospital last week she spent her time urging everyone to exercise their civic duty. As she got more than a liter of fluid drained from her lungs, 74-year-old Sylvia Fisher wasted no time spreading the word about why it’s imperative that we vote Trump out of office.

In addition to this kind of canvassing being totally badass, my Nana also felt she needed to prove her mental acuity in order to get the best care possible, a sad reflection of the state of our current healthcare system (another issue on the ballot). “I had CNN and MSNBC on the whole time so that people would know who they were talking to” she said. She didn’t let a single nurse or attending physician leave without confirming they had a voting plan. She encouraged them to check their registration and vote early. She is rumored to have convinced even a nurse from Florida to vote blue and to call three friends from the swing state urging them to do the same. After being discharged, she took every opportunity to emphasize that the surgeons who saved her life were both immigrants.

Usually it’s the grandparents who shep nachas for their children and grandchildren. But I’m awed by the strength and tenacity with which this woman is fighting for the soul of our nation, and in recent months she’s brought me tremendous nachas. If my Nana won’t even rest on a hospital bed, we can’t rest on our laurels — we all must vote.