One of my favorite quotes:
President Barack Obama’s Remarks at the 2012 Democratic National Convention – Full Speech:
A few pull-out quotes from last night’s speech (click here for video):
“Have a surplus? Try a tax cut. Deficit too high? Try another. Feel a cold coming on? Take two tax cuts, roll back some regulations & call us in the morning.” ~ President Obama
Climate change is not a hoax. ~ President Barack Obama
“And while I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved together, I’m far more mindful of my own failings, knowing exactly what Lincoln meant when he said, ”I have been driven to my knees many times by the overwhelming conviction that I had no place else to go.”
I am the President. ~ President Barack Obama
You did it. ~ President Barack Obama
Osama bin Laden is dead. ~ President Barack Obama
“America, I never said this journey would be easy, and I won’t promise that now. Yes, our path is harder, but it leads to a better place. Yes our road is longer, but we travel it together. We don’t turn back. We leave no one behind. We pull each other up. We draw strength from our victories, and we learn from our mistakes, but we keep our eyes fixed on that distant horizon, knowing that Providence is with us, and that we are surely blessed to be citizens of the greatest nation on Earth.
Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless these United States.”
Why the last 10 minutes of President Obama’s speech had me in tears.
I don’t know.
I do know it was something about the vision of America—one of love, enthusiasm, community—a feeling I had when I was a child, in public school, learning about our noble experiment in self-government, about Lincoln, about Washington, about MLK Jr.
I don’t love America in the way I root for a football or baseball or basketball team. I love America in a more profound way. I love our differences, our challenges, even our rancor. We’re a loud, brash country, full of excess and deprivation, full of selfishness and everyday kindnesses.
We can choose which direction, which path to walk. We can choose a path based on responsibility, common sense and warmth—or we can choose one based on prejudice, fear, and divisiveness.
Michelle had so much heart in her speech, and completely blew Ann Romney out of the water by comparison (using Ann to humanize Mitt, when her counterpart is fucking Michelle? Please…). Clinton they used to refute the Republicans on complex issues, but he’s perfect for that because he can communicate those issues in a wonderful way. Biden, I was super impressed by, and he was also heartfelt, patriotic, and inspiring (and surprisingly few linguistic screw ups, considering it’s Biden).
So what was there left for Obama? He CAN”T be quite as inspiring and hopeful as he was last election. Four years later, a lot of people still haven’t seen that “change” and “hope.” To ride that inspirational wave would insult and alienate those people. Promising a beautiful paradise with music and baby deers and meadows, when you’ve already had four years to do it, would not go over well with people that are still frustrated and struggling. Basically, shit got real.
But, as Pres., you do have things to work with: you HAVE accomplished a lot of great things. Mention that. Remind people of what HAS changed. Then remind people that this shit doesn’t happen overnight. For the problems we had, four years isn’t long enough to fix it. Then, importantly, focus on the future. Aspirations. Where we CAN go from here, given the right leadership. Focus on that, but don’t get too inspiring because, again, that could alienate people who have not yet felt the changes you put in place. But it will happen, you will feel it, as long as the other guys don’t screw it up.
So yeah, I felt it was lacking compared to his beautiful, inspiring, damn-near tear-bringing speeches of the past, but…that is where he is now. That is what he had to do. He is the President. Shit was bad. He did a lot. It’s getting better. Let him finish the job and not let someone else screw it up. Boom!
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