Tuesday, November 11, 2008

change in which we can believe.

{watching the results come in.}

it has now been one week since barack obama was named the next president of these united states. i know that much has been said and written about how it happened and what it means and that is all fine and good and i don't pretend to have some as-yet-uncharted wisdom to add to the existing punditry. (whew. i am pretty proud of that sentence.) after a week to think it over, though, i would love to tell you what it all means to me.

first, let me say that i am thrilled. i hope i don't get into journalistic trouble here by displaying a bias, but this is the first time in my voting life that my candidate of choice has won, and i feel pretty good about that. when obama came out on stage to give his acceptance speech, i told jess and amy that i thought i might start lactating. and i meant it. that is how happy i was.

i wasn't just happy because my party had won, though, or just because i think john mccain is sort of creepy, or anything like that. i was happy because we, collectively, had taken a step forward, taken a risk, made a new choice and embraced change. i realize that the slogan "change we can believe in" is, ultimately, just campaign cliche (not to mention bad grammar), but the concept of change is a powerful and necessary one, for the country as a whole and for us as individuals, and i was glad to be reminded of that. this election broke through prejudice and cracked the glass ceiling, and that is something i think we should all get behind, no matter how we cast our ballots.

obama had a long and stirring list of change we have already embraced: women reaching for the ballot, and now seeing their own names on the ballot; a depression endured and overcome; civil rights; a wall coming down in berlin. and he reminded us of the necessary change yet to come as we work and sacrifice to save our planet, our jobs, our healthcare, our children's futures. of all the things we work for, positive change for everyone should be top of the list.

and now, one week later, it is the need to embrace change, on all levels, for ourselves and for others, that sticks most in my mind. one of the principles of the gospel, and of life, that i love the most is the idea, the fact, that we can change, that we can and should believe in change. we can put off our bad habits, our prejudices, our misunderstandings. we can learn new skills, new talents, new ways of understanding and communicating. we can become more loving, more patient (still working on that one), more grateful and more graceful. we can do hard things. we can do things we have never done before and we can succeed. we can conquer fears. we can make our weaknesses into strengths. we can evolve and we can get better. and better. and better. because we get to change. that is something i believe.

and i believe in it, too.


Anonymous said...

Just one small point of clarification. Obama was not "named" president. He was "elected" president. To "name" someone to something does not imply the democratic process in which we had the right to participate.
Aside from that, your sentiments are well spoken, and I, for one, appreciate them.

Chris said...


Isn't it nice being a winner for a change? That's change I can believe in!