Simply, because we deserve better.
America needs a president who is passionately anti-war. Because the war in Iraq is causing major depressive disorder in Americans, causing thousands of US soldier suicides each year (and thousands more cases of PTSD and major depressive disorder and psychotic breaks), and has caused more than 600,000 innocent civilian casualties and hundreds of thousands more displacements and injuries, for Iraqi civilians. A whole generation of Iraqis has been damaged for life (whether mentally or physically) and Americans NEED to be able to elect a president who cares about ending the war. The Iraq War is *the* moral issue of our time. Americans have not forgotten that we have actively been in a WAR that was created on false pretenses for several years now. Hillary Clinton, even up to the last debate last week, stubbornly defends her vote in the Senate to allow President Bush to take us to war on shaky evidence. This is a huge fundamental difference between Obama and Clinton. I cannot imagine what the psyche of our younger generations of Americans will be if after all the energy they’ve put into the electoral process and into supporting Obama the anti-war candidate, Hillary “establishment” “clinton dynasty” comes into power. That would SUCK.
Obama also has such a unifying energy about him. For months and months I was wary he would not be able to garner enough support from Americans, partly because of his race (needless to say, racism exists in huge ways in america, personally and in institutions) and partly because of his broader messages of hope and change (as compared to more specific policies). But he’s shown us up. The momentum around him is amazing, and his ability to engage youth is unprecendented (Over 50% of caucus-goers in Iowa were in the 17-29 year old age group. and HOW many people do you know whose kids convinced them to vote for obama?) People want change. Endorsements are coming from everywhere. He has an energy that America is hungry for.
And though Obama’s surrounded himself by some Washington insiders, he doesn’t have NEARLY as much of an “establishment” presence as Hillary Clinton does. Hillary’s got the top corporations on wall street rooting for her; she’s gotten the most in financial contributions (dem or republican) from the pharmaceutical industry and the health insurance industry; she’s got deeply rooted Washington insiders guiding her campaign. Our candidates really should be judged as much by who they surround themselves with as by who they are. Case in point — President Bush is an idiot, an absolute bumbling idiot. There’s no way he could come up with the tone and policies that his administration has put forth. It’s the people behind him who are calling the shots. Given, if Clinton OR Obama were president, they’d be calling more shots than Bush because they’ve got solid brains in their heads. But still, it’s important to look at the folks these candidates are surrounded by. And Bill! Do we want more of NAFTA, industry deregulation, welfare “reform” aka punishment, DOMA, and Don’t Ask Don’t Tell? Do we want more of Democratic Leadership Council corrupted politics? No, and no.
I’ve been very critical of Obama in the recent past, and have challenged my friends who supported Obama over Edwards on why they did so. (and i’ve blogged RIGHT here very recently about an objectionable statement Obama put out about the Israel-Palestinian conflict). But I think Obama’s gotta be more responsive to the peoples’ desires than Clinton (and Clinton’s thoughts on the israel-palestinian conflict are even WORSE) and I think his mistaken policies are outweighed by his positive policies.
But there’s just something so much bigger going on. Obama is infectious. INFECTIOUS. And that’s what we need.
I’ll leave ya’ll with a moving video that you’ve probably already seen by now, because it’s gotten almost 500,000 hits in less than 24 hours, and it’s spreading like wildfire (did I mention INFECTIOUS?)
Will.I.Am (of black eyed peas) and others, spreading the love:
the words from Obama’s speech featured in the video:
It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation.
Yes we can.
It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail toward freedom.
Yes we can.
It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness.
Yes we can.
It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballots; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the Promised Land.
Yes we can to justice and equality.
Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity.
Yes we can heal this nation.
Yes we can repair this world.
Yes we can.
We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.
We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics…they will only grow louder and more dissonant ……….. We’ve been asked to pause for a reality check. We’ve been warned against offering the people of this nation false hope.
But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.
Now the hopes of the little girl who goes to a crumbling school in Dillon are the same as the dreams of the boy who learns on the streets of LA; we will remember that there is something happening in America; that we are not as divided as our politics suggests; that we are one people; we are one nation; and together, we will begin the next great chapter in the American story with three words that will ring from coast to coast; from sea to shining sea –
Yes. We. Can.
Can you think of ANY other presidential candidate in our lifetimes who can inspire this?
Obama’s cut seriously into Hillary Clinton’s lead in the national primaries in the past few weeks. The past week’s polls are absolutely shocking — the kind of momentum that Obama’s got right now is unstoppable. It’s a phenomenon.
Vote. Tell your friends and neighbors. Take action.