Congratulations U.S.A.!

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You guys got my heart racing faster than when Sexy Clint Eastwood and Slutty Honey Boo Boo came trick-or-treating at my door this HalloweenThe rest of the world and I screamed at the possibility. But you thankfully came through in the end, and elected Barack Obama. 

50 years from now, I believe that Obama will be seen as an extraordinary president in the pantheon of Lincoln and Roosevelt. His legacy today is obscured by the day-to-day flotsam thrown at his feet and in his face that prevents us from seeing his skills and accomplishments. He does have his faults for sure. But he sees the forest and not just the wind-blown trees that keep toppling in his way, making his forward momentum a frustratingly difficult but worthwhile slog.

And for this, I’d like to give thanks:

(From Monty Python’s “The Meaning of Life”)

Chaplain: Let us praise God. O Lord…
…Ooh, You are so big…
…So absolutely huge.
…Gosh, we’re all really impressed down here, I can tell You.
Forgive us, O Lord, for this, our dreadful toadying, and…
Congregation: And barefaced flattery.
Chaplain: But You are so strong and, well, just so super.
Congregation: Fantastic.
Chaplain: Amen.
Congregation: Amen.

And so, shall we move on?

I’m not a real “politico”, but the US election involved major issues that transcended politics. Issues that affect real people in real ways. There were national, international, and intensely personal matters that would have been disturbed significantly by the election of a Republican president. A rip in the fabric of time like Marty McFly returning to Hill Valley, California and marrying his own mother.

The Republicans would have slashed taxes to 0% for the top 1%, made carrying of automatic weapons to school compulsory for all kindergarten students and I’m pretty sure they would have made hiring of women at anything above minimum wage an indictable offence subject to the death penalty. I read all of this on a FOX News network blog (or was it the National Enquirer?), so it must be true. My head hurts thinking of what could have happened with a sequel to George W. Bush. U.S. voters made the right choice on November 6, but the undertow currents are still pulling ferociously, trying to drag the electorate under.

But isn’t the US still a great country?

Sure, I think it is in a (dwindling) financial and military sense. But socially it’s trying to emulate Dickens world of Scrooge or Oliver – it lives in the 19th century and refuses to wake up from a bad dream. Its education system is fraying at the seams. Millions without medical coverage are at risk of financial ruin (and unable to get the liposuction and breast augmentations they so desperately want!). Crumbling infrastructure is compounded by HUGE deficits and debts.

Yet fear of the changing colours, social mores, and languages of its burgeoning immigrant population has people walling themselves off from the new reality.

Despite all of the problems that exist, the US made a wonderful choice 4 years ago in electing not just a smart, charismatic guy, but a black-skinned man who knows his basketball too. I was mightily surprised when Obama won, but pleased.

Each person needs a sense of hope in their world. The election of a black man told millions that there was hope in theirs’ and their childrens’ lives. It reaffirmed the “American Dream” that says that anyone can rise through the social, economic and educational ranks with perseverance and determination. Electing just another rich, white guy tells half of the population that they don’t really matter…21st century slavery may be against the law, but it really lives on if you are black or brown or anything other than white, and your leader is ALWAYS a rich, white dude.

But, with the shifting demographic tides, will the next momentous move in 4 or at most 8 years be the election of a woman…and could it be Hillary Clinton? Or in the Trudeau, Kennedy fashion, maybe Chelsea Clinton.  Let me rephrase thisplease let it be Hillary  or Chelsea and NOT Sarah…yes, Sarah Palin, the “Dan Quayle” of the 2008 election.

Twenty five years ago, the thought of an elected black president would have been a laughably outrageous, outlandish, foolish concept. The same was true for a woman president. Silly as a computer in every home, and phones without cords. But throw in a burgeoning hispanic population from Cuba, Mexico, and a few other Latin American countries and a couple of decades later…SHAZZAM…little Barry Obama wins.

Four years from now, statistically, the skin tones of the population will continue to darken and the aging demographic and longer lifespan of women will push the percentage of women vs. men voters to a higher level than today.

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Bada bing bada boom!!…a woman President.

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I want a woman president elected who has strength and integrity, but still has some woman in her (Margaret Thatcher need not apply!). She should be empathetic, and smart, and worldly, and mature, and have vision. But especially, she should be able to have a disagreement with the other little tykes in the sandbox and still find a solution that makes everyone at least reasonably happy. Half a tootsie roll for everyone. We men aren’t very good at this. If my kids borrow my car and it comes back with a scratch…my response?:

YOU SHALL NEVER DRIVE THIS CAR AGAIN, EVER! DISCUSSION OVER…

My good wife’s response:

WHAT WILL YOU DO TO MAKE UP FOR THIS SO THAT I CAN TRUST YOU IN THE FUTURE?

Now which of these approaches is likely to have the most long-term success? I know I don’t have to answer the question because it’s obvious. Well, obvious except when you’re a manly rage of hormones in the heat of the moment. So, my next question becomes:

WHO DO YOU WANT WITH THEIR FINGER ON THE NUCLEAR WEAPON BUTTON, OR REGULATING THE NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE?

Our world will become a kinder, gentler, saner place with Barack and then Hillary and Chelsea (but not Sarah) in charge.  And we’ll all laugh when Hillary gets caught checking out the man-thongs her male interns are wearing … take that Bill!

But of course she won’t do anything of the sort because…well…because women just don’t do that sort of thing… I don’t think… do they?

There’s no time like the present…I’m starting to wear my HILLARY 2016 button next week.

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