Politrix: American Promise

Um, yeah: Goosebumps. Then hot flashes. The chills. And a final flush of pride. That’s what I felt last night, watching Barack Obama accept the Democratic party’s nomination to the presidency. I’m obviously too young to have been personally privy to the soul-defining moment that was Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. No, I’ve had to absorb the emotion second-hand, from grainy television clips and my daddy, via osmosis. So last night was the first time that I felt, in a very real way, that I was a part of history, that I was an eyewitness to greatness. We will all remember where we were when Obama spoke to the nation about the promise that America has made to us, and the promise we need to make to America. It was amazing.

But I’m not just struck by his oratory skills, his ability to move crowds, his supposed celebrity. I’m truly excited because he effectively built upon the momentum of the week and hit all the crucial points that were so necessary to touch upon in front of this national audience:
He let folks know that he’s just like them; he dismissed the notion that he’s a celebrity; he outlined exactly what change means; he plainly laid out why his judgment is impeccable; he directly linked McCain to Bush; he denounced partisan patriotism as BS; he talked about the tough issues (abortion, guns, same sex marriage and immigration); he let it be known that he’s ready, and that McCain is the risk; he reminded America that it’s made up of fundamentally good people; and he reminded folks that he is a man of faith. And he did it all in less than an hour. Whew.

The best line of the night? I can’t even pick just one; they were flying faster than I could scribble them down. But I’m pretty partial to: “It’s not that John McCain doesn’t care. It’s just that John McCain doesn’t get it.” Oh, and: “We cannot meet 21st Century promises with 20th Century bureaucracy.” Ooo, and just one more, and I’m done, I promise: “What the naysayers don’t understand is that this election has never been about me. It’s about you.” As we say where I’m from, “Hell, naaaaaaw!”

Earlier in the evening, Al Gore reminded us of an African proverb: “When you pray, move your feet.” Go out there and move your feet to prove Obama right.

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Missed this historic speech? Watch it below…

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