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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The "I" in Inauguration

It seems like I shouldn't let this day pass without some commentary about today's Inauguration Ceremony in which Barack Obama became President of the United States. I'm usually decidely quiet about political matters, but for some reason feel compelled to break my silence -- briefly -- today.

I did not vote for Barack Obama. My vote had nothing to do with race or with single-issue politics, rather an opinion formed over the course of the campaign. But that is neither here nor there now.

I eagerly watched the ceremonies over lunch -- I, the lone dissenter among a table full of Barack Obama supporters.

I watched because from the moment of his "so help me God," I am a President Obama supporter in as much as I love this country and I want it to be strong. I want whomever is at the helm to lead with confidence and justice, with humility and a desire for the common good. I want leadership pledged to serve that which is right, not that which is popular.

While I did not find his speech to be one that will go down in history as one of "the greats," I did find words that give me hope.

Hope that we will re-awaken a sense of personal responsibility and abandon a propensity toward reactive blame:

Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.

Hope that our national leader and other elected officials truly mean "all" -- from the smallest and most vulnerable to the oldest and most forgotten:

The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

I found myself filled with a sense of honor and privilege that I live in a country where I can say "I did not vote for this man" without fear of retribution.

I found myself imagining the day from the perspective of his two young daughters, who must feel a bit that they've stepped into the most wild of fairy tales.

I found myself irritated with a media who seemed to be too quick to elevate our new leader to the status of Lincoln and Kennedy, when all he had done so far was to take an oath.

And I've found myself having said enough. God bless President Obama. God bless the United States of America.


Joanie said...

Amy, that was a very eloquent entry! I, too, didn't vote for Obama and took quite a bit of heat from co-workers because of it.
I hope Obama does a good job as our leader. I didn't vote for him because of his lack of experience and nothing else. Only time will tell if this country made the right choice. And I agree that it's way too early to count him among the great Presidents of our time. Like Ronald Reagan would say, "You are no Jack Kennedy."

Sharon said...

I found myself irritated with a media who seemed to be too quick to elevate our new leader to the status of Lincoln and Kennedy, when all he had done so far was to take an oath.

And that is why I stopped watching it in full. I had had enough.

Excellent post, I share the same views as you, and I am hopeful for his change of heart.

Anonymous said...

I did vote for Obama...however I too don't this his speeches was one of the "greats" but definitely uplifting and hopeful. And admid all of the layoffs and economic gloom these days - it is wonderful to have someone who believes there is light and who vows to lead us in that direction.

Change is good, but often times tough. I'm ready for the ride.

Nate's Mom said...

Excellent post. I too felt hope in Obama's speech. I hope he, and we as a country, follow through. Thanks fors sharing your thoughts.

Sheri in CA

Shannon @ Gabi's World said...

I didn't vote for him either, and my advice to those that I came in contact today who are supporters of Obama is this... Just keep in mind that he is a man and not God... If you are expecting perfection from him then you are setting yourself up for disappointment!

And as for me and any other Christian out there that didn't vote for him is... God knows what he is doing and THIS too is in His plan!

Old Woman said...

Well put. I didn't vote for him either. But I ahve to accept what is. I couldn't agree with you more. You have eloquently put into words what has been in my heart.

Anonymous said...

Can't comment very much on American politics as I'm Canadian but I certainly do hold hope that he can somehow turn things around for the better. It will be very difficult but he genuinely seems to care and that's a start.


Angie Seaman said...

Amy, love your post for this topic. I didn't vote for Obama either. Take a look at the post I put up today under WORDFUL WEDNESDAY. I thought my blog friend said it best yesterday. I quoted her statement on my blog.

And like a few of the other commenters, I eventually turned the inaguration off after I saw him take his oath into office. The media treats this man as though he is a celebrity in every since of the word. I'm confused by this.

Either way, I'm hanging on for the ride - good or bad - it's always in God's hands and each day is well thought out and written in his ginormous book of master plans. Again...great post girl! Very well said!

PS...Thanks for the link on the Self portrait challenge. You are so sweet. I actually did this for a short time last year. If you go back far enough on my blog you might find 3 or 4. :) However, you know me well enough by now to know that I don't enjoy being on the other side of the lens. Therefore, the SPC went to the wayside for me. I feel so silly taking pictures of myself and finally just gave it up. :) Thanks for thinking of me though. Very much appreciated!

Hugs, Angie

Tracey said...

Hi Amy! I am new to your blog and I too did not vote for Obama. I think you wrote a fine post. I couldn't agree with you more!