Tuesday, January 20, 2009

... But Will We?

Connor's daycare was closed today due to the local schools being closed.

The local schools were all closed due to a few inches of snow on the ground.

Yes, you read that correctly.

People here in Charlotte go bonkers when the weatherman says "Snow". It's like the proverbial yelling of "Fire" in a crowded theater. You can't find Milk or Bread anywhere, nobody wants to go out on the roads, the people who are driving are either out of control or driving one tenth the posted limit, and everything closes down for the day.

Except, of course, our offices. So since my company's telecommuting policies are a bit more lax than Misha's, I stayed home to work and babysit and take a half-day hit on my PTO bank so that Misha wouldn't have to take a full 8 hours on hers.

While Connor was asleep for his midday nap, I took in some of the inauguration. It was interesting that all of the former presidents were announced by their full name, but Obama's middle name was just given as "H". Not sure why they chose to do that during the introductions but then used his full middle name (Hussein) during the oath. Rick Warren's prayer was an interesting moment, full of passionate calls for "freedom for all people". Except Gay people who want to marry, I suppose. There was a cute moment when, during John Williams' musical arrangement, Michelle Obama reached forward and squeezed Barak Obama's shoulder as the clock ticked past noon, the official time of transition, regardless of when the oath is taken. And Obama's speech was very good. Very inspiring.

Obama's campaign slogan was "Yes We Can" and while I fully believe that any individual or group "can", it's an entirely different thing when it comes down to whether they "will". I'd like to believe that we can all work together toward restoring our economy and our global reputation, but when I hear someone like Warren gush about "freedom" after being so outspoken against gay marriage, it just feels like more of the same. Because in the end, my freedom isn't necessarily your freedom and everyone's freedom somehow tramples on someone else's in some small way. But you'll never hear anyone say "we're all entitled to freedom ... except you."

So the next year will tell most of the story I believe. There will be the rallying issues and the divisive issues, the victories and the losses, the rewards and the sacrifices and I hope in the end we're all better for it in some way that matters to each of us. I just hope that those who "can" rally "will", those who "can" contribute to victory "will" and those who "can" afford to make sacrifices "will". Even those who voted for McCain. Because I think that's the only way that we'll be able to survive the next 4 years without imploding.

No comments: