There were many parts of Obama’s acceptance speech tonight that were really appealing, but near the end he spoke about common ground and our need to move into the future, not dwell on the politics of the past. I was very proud of him for not shying away from the issues that Republicans have used like so many blunt weapons in recent elections. Barack grabbed them and addressed them as only he could. He speaks to the “better angels of our nature” and as Marla Erwin said on Twitter tonight, if we do not elect Barack Obama as our President, then we do not deserve him. I agree 110%.
“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 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. Passions 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. 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 the 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.