Like many of you, I'm sure, I just had the opportunity to watch Obama's inauguration and the following speech. I decided to write this note last night, with the expectation of mixed reactions to this event.
I will say first that the speech was excellent. He said a lot of great things that, as he stated, have run true for all time. I heard something besides the words "hope" and "change" over and over, which was much more engaging than his usual dogma. Not only was the speech excellent, but it is so powerful to see the transition we have made as a country to elect a black man as president. It is truly amazing to view the perspective on how blacks have been treated in this country, and are still being treated and still elect a black president.
It is easy to get lost in the moment and the powerful words he spoke this morning. Lost enough that you overlook some of the things he says. He used phrases like "re-making America" and a "new system." The vast implications of many things he said are things I want a president to see, but the vast implications of subtle insertions to things that are familiar to us are just as profound and very dangerous. I'm not going to pick through the speech, obviously, but I will comment on what I heard.
What I heard was a speech that was clearly inconsistent with the man we elected. A man, who is an outspoken socialist, (for those who disagree, I will make it plain and simple by using the word in its raw definition in regard to his belief in the redistribution of wealth) who is attempting to lift almost all regulations on abortion, who belonged to a fanatic black power religion for 20 odd years, and who ultimately doesn't believe in the American ideals he proclaims to in this speech. Unless, of course, he's been a Constitutionalist all along and somehow fooled all of us. Surprise! But focusing on reality, the way he is trying to morph American thinking opens up a dangerous plethora of possibilities and is fundamentally an attack on our ideals rather than a enforcing of them. No matter how much he claims to support some of them, when he starts changing them, changing the meanings, and inserting new ideals, the more we lose the ground this country was built on.
But, that is all just fair warning for anyone who doesn't believe me or those who were somehow swayed by his speech.
The stronger message I wanted to convey here is one of gratitude. Obviously, I don't agree with Obama on...well just about anything. But he is president now. Complaining about it will not help anything, like so many did during the Bush era, which we currently characterize as a period of outspoken dissatisfaction and political chaos. It ruined the morale of the country constantly. Now, we could possibly be headed for some bad times with the new president, who knows? But complaining and criticizing is not going to help us along. I'm not saying not to think critically, like I did here in this note (which will probably be one of the last about the president as I'm not allowed to speak my opinion about him as a soldier) but I'm saying that complaining and attacking the president at every move he makes is not going to help the country. What will help is being grateful for a stable leader in a stable 'democracy' where you are free to criticize the president, but instead give your support to make the best out of this term as all possible.
Now if you are a revolutionist, thats a different story all together. Just do what you do for our country and I don't need to know about it.