The divide between left and right is nothing new, but the ascent of President Obama has unveiled serious polarization among U.S. citizens.
Nonetheless, I can’t take it lightly when someone badmouths the POTUS. I mean, I really take it hard when someone criticizes him. A few friends have legitimate, intelligent complaints. So do I; I consider myself left of the President on some issues. But other people have such hateful vitriol, it feels like they’re stabbing me personally in the heart with their words. It’s especially tough when these are people in my family or hometown. Notre Dame law professor Laura Hollis was so incensed Obama got re-elected that she concluded it was only possible because “America has become a nation of adolescents.”
Why do we take it so hard?
Because WE are Obama. This whole thing has been so much bigger than just the man himself.
My husband worked as the California Digital Director for the Obama campaign in 2012. Through him, I got a glimpse into the collective psyche of the staff, organizers, and volunteers. Though the pool of people I met was incredibly diverse in age, ethnicity, income, and background, I could always sense the same energy coming from them: an essential kindness, empathy, motivation and passion. Everyone had individual quirks, but no doubt they were a unified tribe.
That collective energy had been dormant for years, and the planets aligned to introduce Obama as a vehicle to channel it.
In his thank you to the staff post-election, Obama stressed his firm belief that they’d go on to do exponentially greater things than he could ever hope to do. ”When I was feeling beaten down, you lifted me up and carried me across the finish line”.
He said it was all about us. Now I get it.
Check out this response to Laura Hollis’ piece in the Daily Kos, a well-argued refute of her many ridiculous viewpoints. And let’s enjoy the next four years!
Tags: Barack Obama, President