11.07.2008

Here We Go


"The story of the campaign and this historic moment has been your story. It is about the great things we can do when we come together around a common purpose. The story of bringing this country together as a healed and united nation will be led by President-Elect Obama, but written by you. The millions of you who built this campaign from the ground up, and echoed your call for the change you wanted to see implemented by the Obama Administration - this process of setting up that new government is about you.

This transition is about selecting a new staff and agenda that will help reclaim the American dream and bring about positive lasting change to this country. In order to do that, we want to hear from you.

Tell us your story and the issues that matter most to you. Share with us your concerns and hopes. – the policies you want to see carried out in the next four years."

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posted by ashley

10.10.2008

Inspiration Rising


Obama '08 - Vote For Hope from MC Yogi on Vimeo.

Inspiration rising
Celebrating potential
Boldly believing

...dancing with a smile


A big thanks to Amy for this video.

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posted by ashley

10.03.2008

Confessions of a Confused American

I'm trying to follow politics these days… but mostly I really don’t understand them. It reminds me of my early experiences with religion.

I remember as a child being fascinated by this thing we called religion. I grew up Jewish. I was one of the few Jewish peole in my circles as a kid. I remember that often other people would ask me if I believed in God. I always stumbled a bit in my mind because at age 6 or 7 I knew that the question wasn’t really meant for me as a person, but was actually just an effort to learn about Jewish people. You could tell by the tone of their voice. It wasn’t one of curiosity. They weren’t asking if I believed in God, but were instead asking me, “Do Jews believe in God?”.

I would give the obligatory “Yes” on behalf my people as I knew many people misunderstood Jews and thought that since we didn’t believe Jesus was the son of God that meant we didn’t believe in God. As the other person wasn’t interested in a real conversation, that then allowed me to ponder the question they had asked me, do I believe in god? Here’s the thing. I totally believed in something. The world is amazing. Life is incredible and incredibly mysterious. There would be no way to find all of the answers to all of the questions that exist in the universe. There is no way to come to a place of certainty about everything. And therefore, my sense was that there is always some mystery. And within that, sure, I can believe that it fits with that word “god” and the sense of omniscience that comes with that word. I believe that there is an unknown and awe-some force.

But this God that people refer to in religions. I wasn’t sure if I believed in that God. As I perceived it, God was the central element to religions. And it was things like God and Jesus that made millions of people throughout history hate one another so much that they would kill each other’s families. And often they would say it was in the name of God. How could God be something wonderful and beautiful that causes so much hatred and violence. I just couldn’t believe in that God.

So as a little girl I would pause because I really wasn’t sure if I believed in God. Religion just didn’t really make sense to me. What people said it was and what was presented as being important didn’t really seem to play out in how it was practiced.

I feel the same way right now with American politics. It really doesn’t make sense to me. I can’t find much congruence between what people say it means for two candidates to run for the president and what I’m actually seeing play out. I’m enjoying it (and it makes me nervous) because it’s an exciting and baffling story with a degree of suspense. But so much of it seems to have nothing to do with my vague sense of what politics are. The McCain/Palin ballot and their actions feel like a sit-com that’s about games, manipulation, spinning stories to win the pageant, lying and acting out with a great deal of drama.

I feel like more than ever, this election will provide a reality check for our country. I don’t know how to speak eloquently or politically correctly about this.

I feel like Obama and Biden together bring the fundamentals for being leaders in the executive position. I feel like they’ve offered a clear sense of what they’re all about. Whether they can deliver is the politics-as-usual game, but at least I feel like I have a sense of what to expect.

John McCain and Sarah Palin scare the shit out of me. All that seems clear to me is that they feel strongly about promoting Palin’s religious right beliefs and fulfilling both of their desires for power and McCain’s strong desire to be the president, at whatever cost. They feel like two politicians that aren’t grounded in anything that is even remotely close to governing for the greatest good. From my vantage, as I watch this entertainment, it feels sleazy and inauthentic. I am very distrusting. Palin seems to live in a box. It might be a beautiful, “average mom” box to many people, yet it is very prescribed and she doesn’t step out of it. The campaign has tried to coach her into existing out of the box, but we know how much effort has gone into shaping what we see. It terrifies me to think of her as the president and it baffles my mind to think that this country could possibly be filled with enough people that believe that would be a good thing. And McCain’s campaign in general just seems like a strategy show to me. It all feels like a cartoon aimed at showing muscle and might and proving why “I’m the best” regardless of what I have to offer.

And what is equally as baffling to me in all of this is that what I keep being told is that the reason McCain has even a chance of winning is because Obama is black (even thought he’s half white) and there are still enough Americans that are afraid of that. I know we’ve got a long way to go in our country to unravel the racism that is so deeply embedded in our social fabric. A very long way to go. And yet, given these choices, the possibility that a majority might still feel more comfortable being led by McCain/Palin than Obama/Biden just makes absolutely no sense to me. If this were to be the truth, we need this shocking of a reality check.

I truly believe that it’s possible and greatly hope that one month from tomorrow I will celebrate and learn from the reality that the majority of the people in this country are ready to step forward with Obama and Biden because they care about a greater good, not just because they’re acting out of fear or they want to see more of their values forced on others.

… and that concludes this off-the-cuff confessions of my confusions. Please do forgive me for my political ignorance.

Photo by LuluP

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posted by ashley

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