Let’s start off with this fact: I am not a political person.
I don’t religiously keep up with what is going on in Congress, nor do I think either party in there is completely without fault.
I am, however, making an effort to keep up with things like the State of the Union address, if for no other reason than knowing what other people are talking about, so I listened to President Obama’s speech last night (okay fine, it was this morning online). There were quite a few things that stuck with me. One was the fact that everyone claps too much. Am I the only person annoyed by that?
But the other was this line:
“It is our unfinished task to restore the basic bargain that built this country – the idea that if you work hard and meet your responsibilities, you can get ahead, no matter where you come from, what you look like, or who you love.”
Now, this may have been intending as a simple statement for the loosening of immigration laws, or a statement for gay marriage, but I heard something different. I heard this part:
“OUR unfinished task”
I heard that as a call to action. I heard that it’s not the government’s task. It’s mine. It’s yours.
It’s up to each individual person to restore the idea that hard work and personal responsibility will change the world. If nothing else, it will change your world.
Although it is a rapidly changing and scary world that we are now living in, that’s not up to us. Although things are difficult and intimidating, that part is not for us to decide. “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.”
That may be an idealistic point of view.
But it’s still one worth believing in.