Tuesday, February 24, 2009
A Big Ol’ Pot o’ Hope-Pride Stew in the House Chamber
I don’t know the technology behind MSNBC’s Audience Reaction-O-Meter. You know – that running line chart that shows the positive or negative reaction of an audience to a speech. Tonight the “React-O-Meter” showed the real time (Is it really? OK.) response of Obama voters and McCain voters to Obama’s first Congressional address. Again, I don’t know how it works, but tonight, the blue line and the red line converged solidly in the positive, and overlapped like worms wrestling each other to the surface. People agreeing? G’wannnn.
Maybe it was the guest list: Hope arrived on time like any good regular guest. Then determination and pride burst through the door, threw back their Scotch, laughed loudly, clapped everyone on the back, and sat down for a long dinner.
See, while reminding us that we need to focus on “Energy, Healthcare, and Education," and leading the cheer to “Rebuild, Recover and Emerge Stronger” (Gimme an R! R! E! S!) Obama added this call-to-pride thing.
The message was: “Time to get busy. No more pessimism. No more cynicism. Time to get up. Time to keep up. Oh, and get your ass back in the class room. No more slacking off with the pot and the video games. How old are you anyway? Can you graduate? Can you give me another year of school after that? This ain’t no rodeo, son. Tonight, I said that we are going to have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020. So, crack a book and show some pride. You need to help save our healthcare system. And find us a new source of energy. Ready? Go.”
And, then there were other guests, like that banker who gave his $60 million bonus to his co-workers, past and present. Oh! And, that 8th grader, Ty'Sheoma Bethea, sitting next to Michelle Obama who is stuck in an under-performing school where the adults admit that all is pretty much crap. She wrote Congress asking for help. She wrote Congress asking for help, because she and her peers want to succeed. She wrote Congress, and borrowed money from her Principal for the stamp so she could tell congress, “We’re not quitters.” The Obama/McCain voter reaction worms crawled off the screen, and broke the surface into the sunshine.
Of course, I’m a sucker, so I cried.
Oh, and Governor Jindal? Happy Mardi Gras to you too.