And here’s why:
First, I know he’s not going to enter into illegal wars. I also like the idea that a leader isn’t the doer-in-chief. He seems to realize that change comes from the bottom up, and that it is the role of the leader to inspire, nurture, or not get in the way.
I like that.
I also don’t think he has a problem sitting down at the table with Iran, Venezuela, North Korea and having a talk. How can we turn down the tension, he would ask? He realizes the strong nation reaches out, makes concessions, looks for peace, and isn’t afraid of diplomacy. It is the weak nation that stonewalls dialog, refuses to listen, and uses the thread of force as a weapon of first resort.
When I picked up my little dog Billy from the street, he was a nervous little crazy nut. He was nippy and erratic, a little lunatic. I reacted to him with anger and authority. I tried to cow him into compliance. It just made him more insane. Then I realized if I spoke softly to him, stroked him gently, put myself on an even plane with him, he was much more reasonable. It didn’t take anything away from me. I knew I was still in charge, but if I could make him feel like he was a little bit more in control of his domain, it made all the difference.
I think Obama understands that. He’s multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, well traveled. I think those things give you a perspective on the world that makes you less afraid.
I’ve had discussions about the "illegals problem" I always ask what is this problem? It doesn’t seem to be a problem to me. At some point, the erosion of the English language is mentioned. I would ask again "Okay, so what is the ‘language problem’? What is this problem? I need to know, because it doesn’t seem to be a problem to me." Thinking the "problem" self-evident, we end up devolving into game saying and catch phrases gleaned from talk radio, until finally when all is exhausted, out comes the final appeal to authority,"they broke the law."
But it’s just fear, fear that they are bad, and they are bad because you don’t understand them. I get the impression from Obama, that he sees lack of understanding as an opportunity to understand. He may not be fully informed on all issues, but he’s not fearful about getting to know them. He might not speak Spanish, or Farsi, or Arabic, but I think he’s willing to accept that those people are just like our people. We aren’t that different. And we shouldn’t be afraid.
That’s the key. I’m sick and tired of politicians pandering to fear. Elect the Dems and it’s a vote for terror! Elect the Dems and dirty Mexicans will overrun the border, take your jobs, and marry your daughter! Elect the Dems and the economy will stagnate further, turn to socialism and your lives will be over… or worse, be like Europe.
Bah! Obama says, your future can be as bright as you want it to be. He says, I’m not going to pander to your fears. I’m going to be fearless. I’m going to be a black man running for president in a still decidedly racist country. I’m not afraid. You shouldn’t be either.
What the republicans won’t tell you, and this is their dirty little secret: Lowering taxes does not help the economy. Raising them doesn’t either, but that’s neither here nor there. The secret is this: hope builds the economy. When people have hope, when they see a future that looks bright, they create. They build. They grow. That is why the economy booms. Right now the economy is in the tank because people are afraid, and the current leadership doesn’t want to give up that tool of oppression and control. A vote for McCain is a vote for fear, a vote for more foreign wars, more erosion of the Constitution, and a continued lessening of the collective national spirit.
Obama, I think, has this idealistic, audacious child-like hope, not dashed by fear, not crushed under the heal of bureaucracy. The grownups at the table might snicker at his audacity, "Son, you just don’t get how the world works, do you? Let the grown-ups handle things, okay?"
Obama, "And how’s that been going, hmm?"