A quick collection of my thoughts on these results.
Yes, I’m disappointed Obama won, but it’s not because I wanted McPalin so much as I grieve even the possibility of the FOCA (I’m still praying against it).
A few posts I read after learning the results sort of meshed together in my tired mind.
From Penelope Trunk (in a completely unrelated post), referring to her initial instinct to have a good cry after a disappointment:
But then I realized that I never fall apart. I get through lots of stuff and people always say it’s so much but really, what else can you do? People get through what they have to.
I’ve said that before in different ways. “America” (i.e., those in it not currently euphoric) will find that life goes on. Our call has not changed, and believers may even find it easier to stay engaged with their culture with a bit of fire lit under them.
Bonnie at Intellectuelle observed in Voting for Our Imaginations,
I just think that what we actually vote for isn’t presidential candidates but for our own hopes and dreams. It’s good that we can hope and dream. It’s even better that we have a lot more choice in this country than those in many other parts of the world can even dream of. We have a responsibility to honor this freedom of choice and…choose. But we must also realize, I think, that we don’t have the power we think we do; that politicians and their policies don’t always have the power we wish they did; and that, often, they do actually have a lot more power than is good for either them or us.
Watching (on television) some of the African Americans in line waiting to vote, I felt the weight of why they were voting. One couple that reporters spoke to was (I guessed) in their 60s or 70s. When asked if they ever thought this day would come, both were nearly speechless with emotion and shook their heads emphatically.
This wasn’t about policy, and maybe not even about handouts. This was about making history and having your racial identity (inseparable, I’d argue, from your personal identity) symbolically validated. Perhaps for the first time.
~ ~ ~
My thoughts and prayers have shifted to the judges: that they will hang on until the next congress is elected (and that a conservative congress will be in place).
This moment makes me think of a similar moment about 8 years ago, when we had a GOP majority w/ a GOP prez. A lot of Christians seemed to think we had it made, and I wonder if they stopped praying.
My workplace at the time played NPR and many Democrat supporters were calling in with their concerns about the new situation and articulating why this new development was the end of the world. Some of them were most poignant, and I could feel the fear in their voices, even if I couldn’t identify with it.
Then a young man called in with an entirely different view. Let it go, he said, it’s just one election. This is the way the American system works: one group gets it for a while, and if they screw up bad enough they lose their chance. Let them have it for two years. When the American public sees the mess they make of things we’ll get it back.
That next election (again, if I remember right) was the point at which the Democrats got enough seats to block so many of Bush’s nominees for the high courts. The chance could return.
This is the view I’ve tried to take. I’ve begun praying that truth with be honored, that evil will be revealed and the innocent protected– no matter who’s officially in-charge.
The largest blessing I foresee with Obama and a Democratic Congress is that even the most hopeful supporters will see that humans are not the answer to the problems we face; they won’t be able to say “If only Obama was elected…”
This is how I pray.