Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Because I have to have thoughts about the election too

I was pretty reluctant to jump on the Obama train, but I'm glad he was elected, not so much because of him as a person or because it's a Democrat in power, but because I like the positive energy around his campaign.

I like the feeling of hope and desire for change and I like the way that spirit is infectious and has gotten a lot of people active and involved in their communities.

For all my cynical America bashing I don't dislike America or Americans. I dislike the fact that a country that was founded on such beautiful ideals continually falls short of them. I think this is an opportunity for people to realize some of the ideals that they pay lip service to.

This is not something that the president can do for people. He is one man who is inheriting a whole host of problems and fuckups from previous administrations. It is also a country where corporate lobby groups and concentrated media seek to undermine a lot of positive change, and where the ugly spectres of racism and religious fundamentalism are still issues. Obama has a tough road ahead if he wants to accomplish anything good.

But I think change comes from people. If you want anything good to happen you have to make it happen yourself. That's the American way, isn't it? Don't let the optimism die. Harness it and channel it into doing something good for your community, for your country, for other people. I'm talking to you, too, McCain/Palin supporters.

It's going to take a lot of effort to turn your loud-mouthed, jingoistic freighter of a country around. This is a chance to promote the peace, prosperity, democracy, freedom and opportunity you keep telling us you do.

I wish you the best of luck.