Having been on the losing end of the presidential sweepstakes for the past eight years, I was unable to find one “silver lining” in the cloud of Mr. Bush’s two elections. I was unwilling to give him the benefit of the doubt. The man was just clearly not up to the job. Compared to Bill Clinton, all of his personal failings aside, we had in George W. Bush the equivalent of Barney Fife as the leader of the free world.
There was no honeymoon period between me and George W. Bush. I wasted not one second finding fault with his policies, his inability to deliver a speech effectively, his refusal to pronounce the word “noo-klee-ur” instead of “noo-que-lur.”
I was at first incredulous at how close those elections were, then depressed for weeks, and then it was just increasingly impossible to listen to the man when he came on the tube. He inspired nothing in me for his entire two terms except to click the remote. And that includes much of his performance after September 11.
So as I sit here tonight after the first day of a new era with Barack Hussein Obama as my president, I wonder about my fellow citizens who did not support him and who are in that dismal place that I was during the Bush years. How are they faring today? What are they thinking?
It is not about race for all of them. It may be about ideology, or about experience, or about military service, or equal rights, or perceptions of faith or heritage. Something about the Obama presidency makes them uneasy.
I will be optimistic here and suggest that most of them are in a “wait and see” mode, fingers crossed, waiting to see what happens when the man actually gets down to work.
The rest are digging their underground bunkers and stocking up on canned goods.
Time will tell how long his honeymoon will be with “the media” who, except for the obvious suspects, are clearly in his court. I give them about a month before they begin to tear him down and take hold of some ridiculous story about how he finally lost that famous cool and said something mean about Jessie Jackson into a microphone he thought was turned off. “Is this the REAL Barack Obama?” “What do we really know about this man?” “Tune in at 11 to hear the inside story from an anonymous staffer who was listening from the rest room down the hall.”
As for me, he’s got all the time he needs. He’s got one hell of a mess to clean up.
As a mother of two teenaged boys, I know a thing or two about messes. What I know is, “nobody” admits to responsibility for the mess and “nobody” is interested in cleaning it up. If I had the household equivalent of the mess Mr.Obama now has before him, I’d be tempted to just torch the place and collect the insurance.
I’m confident that my president has a better plan, more courage, more energy, and a better equipped clean-up crew than I. And even though I barely have my own act together, if there is some way I can pitch in I promise I won’t say “it’s not my mess, let someone else clean it up.”
How about you?