I know it is going to be all over the Internet and television for the next couple of days; political pundits much more talented and knowledgeable than I will be dissecting President Obama’s every word and hand movement, the fashion police will be talking about the First Lady’s purple dress, various party members with their shellacked hair and smarmy smiles will talk about how none of this is necessary because the American Dream is all about individual success and a stronger military. I try not to get too verbose on the topic of politics, not because I am not interested or invested but because I don’t really know anything; I have thoughts and feelings but no real knowledge. Still I watched The President’s State of the Union Address because no matter how downtrodden we as a nation are, or we as individuals are, no matter what our political party is, President Obama is the man in charge. We owe it to him as a people to listen to what he has to say (for the record, if McFuck had won I still would have listened, I just would have spent a lot more time yelling at the TV and feeling like our situation was hopeless because hey, that old man does not give a shit about me and my family and every other family just like mine)(also for the record, was anyone else just a little creeped out by the military personnel watching the address? Never a smile, a nod, nothing, they all just sat there and looked, well, scary).
I don’t even really have a point here other than the fact that I watched the Address and was well pleased. What it felt like during the election and inauguration of President Obama was that we were all at the beginning of a race, prancing and chomping at our bits, eager to just get out of the gate and get started. Now, it feels like we as a nation are simply buckling down to get the job done, plodding forward one step at a time. I don’t know much about horses but I know that high-strung race horses have a relatively short life, whereas work horses ten to live a lot longer and at the end of the day have something to show for their work besides a wreath of roses and a big metal cup. Put me in the category of a work horse every time, because the time for flash is long gone.
It still amazes me how many people thought that Obama was going to come in and magically change everything overnight. This, given the fact that he started out, as either candidate would have, with a whole plateful of major problems to deal with. I think I have said this before, but really, is he God? Does he have some secret power to wake up one morning and snap his fingers and suddenly everything is A-OK? Um, no, I don’t think so. He is a man-a powerful man, and eloquent man, a beautiful man, but still, just a man. And continuing on with the horse analogy, he is really just the man in charge of walking behind the horse’s ass who came before him, simply trying to clean up the shit he dropped as he walked along. Not just cleaning it up so that the horses and behind him wouldn’t be covered in it, but so that the little people following at the very end of the parade aren’t still walking in it. That’s it. And as much as I hate to say it, we cannot blame all of our nation’s problems on the government-we as a whole haven’t been doing out part either.
I don’t have any more answers than I did last year when we elected this glorious man as our President. I have had my moments just like everyone else when I have felt discouraged and disappointed. There are still people losing their jobs and homes, there are still people who work decent jobs but still can’t make ends meet, there are still people being denied health coverage if they have insurance and praying like mad to be safe and healthy if they don’t. I just believe that if anyone is going to institute lasting change, it is this administration-and it is our responsibility to give him the chance.
Like I said, I am not an expert, or even a novice when it comes to politics. I am sure there are a thousand and one reasons for various things that I don’t understand, and I know well that unless everyone is committed to lasting change (which people have made clear they are not), it isn’t going to happen. I know that as long as people really in their heart believe that we don’t have a responsibility to one another, that all men are created equal except those who make less that $250,000 a year and then they aren’t even people anymore but offal to be cast aside, then nothing is going to change. I believe that if we continue to hold onto every penny we have and then lord that handful of pennies over everyone else and say,”This is MINE and I am not sharing because I deserve it more than you do,” things will never change. I believe that unless we stop and really look at the people who share our space every day and see them as fellow humans, then nothing is going to change.
And isn’t it time?
***For a little lighter topic, it is Day Four of Matt’s Time Out series over at The Playpen. Today’s question is about the inherent evils of television (or something like that) which is a favorite subject of mine, and I would love to know some of your thoughts about it.***