Thursday, August 28, 2008

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

There was this:
"We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than they are for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. You know, passions may fly on immigration, but I don't know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers. But this, too, is part of America's promise -- the promise of a democracy where we can find the strength and grace to bridge divides and unite in common effort.

I know there are those who dismiss such beliefs as happy talk. They claim that our insistence on something larger, something firmer and more honest in our public life is just a Trojan Horse for higher taxes and the abandonment of traditional values. And that's to be expected. Because if you don't have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare voters. If you don't have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.

You make a big election about small things.

And you know what -- it's worked before. Because it feeds into the cynicism we all have about government. When Washington doesn't work, all its promises seem empty. If your hopes have been dashed again and again, then it's best to stop hoping, and settle for what you already know."

And this:
You know, this country of ours has more wealth than any nation, but that's not what makes us rich. We have the most powerful military on Earth, but that's not what makes us strong. Our universities and our culture are the envy of the world, but that's not what keeps the world coming to our shores.

Instead, it is that American spirit -- that American promise -- that pushes us forward even when the path is uncertain; that binds us together in spite of our differences; that makes us fix our eye not on what is seen, but what is unseen, that better place around the bend.

That promise is our greatest inheritance. It's a promise I make to my daughters when I tuck them in at night, and a promise that you make to yours -- a promise that has led immigrants to cross oceans and pioneers to travel west; a promise that led workers to picket lines, and women to reach for the ballot.

The times are too serious, the stakes are too high for this same partisan playbook. So let us agree that patriotism has no party. I love this country, and so do you, and so does John McCain. The men and women who serve in our battlefields may be Democrats and Republicans and independents, but they have fought together and bled together and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a Red America or a Blue America -- they have served the United States of America.

So I've got news for you, John McCain. We all put our country first.

And this:
America, we cannot turn back. Not with so much work to be done. Not with so many children to educate, and so many veterans to care for. Not with an economy to fix and cities to rebuild and farms to save. Not with so many families to protect and so many lives to mend. America, we cannot turn back. We cannot walk alone. At this moment, in this election, we must pledge once more to march into the future. Let us keep that promise -- that American promise -- and in the words of Scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.

There is more. Read the speech here.


Jen said...

It was a fantastic speech. What do you think about McCain's pick for VP?

Susan said...

Interesting. I'm sure they are thinking they can pull some Clinton voters by picking a woman. I don't know much about Palin but since they call her a "social conservative" I know I wouldn't vote for her.

Brian said...

It is a relief to hear Obama talk about how good the future can be without relying on evoking the stale bogeymen of campaigns past and without sounding like the one true wizard with all the answers.

What I have seen of his speaking recently (in the past few weeks) has felt fresher, more reasonable, more feasible, less desperate, less long-shot, less kicked-puppy. Which is good.

Because repeated battlecries for for hope should be reserved for people fighting cancer, people coping with natural disasters, people in disarray and distress. Not a country that just needs to step on its tiptoes to see above the crowd a moment and make some better long-term decisions.

In this world, Americans rallying around a banner of hope has always struck me as a bit melodramatic. Like the Canadians rallying for snow or Japan rallying for coastal property.

Susan said...

I wish I could photoshop and picture of the US on its tiptoes. :)

Anonymous said...

She can't have been selected to draw Hillary voters. Given her pro-life stance I find it highly unlikely.

Susan said...

As if political thinking is logical. :-) Being logical, you'd think after months of trying to convince us Obama is too young and inexperienced they wouldn't have picked someone younger and less experienced.

Susan said...

"The McCain campaign has made little secret of the fact the selection of Palin — the first woman to appear on a Republican presidential ticket — was in part designed to court supporters of Clinton's White house bid, some of whom feel the New York senator was treated unfairly during the primaries because of her gender and remain wary of supporting Obama."