Wednesday, January 19, 2005

I Celebrate America

Or, perhaps it is better to say that I celebrate democracy. On this January 20, a profoundly mean-spirited person is taking the oath of office as the 44’th president of the United States Of America.

Our nation has survived fools, hollow suits, ideologues, and men whose senility crept upon them while in office. However, we also have had those, as first-citizens of this nation, who generously led us through troubled times or were visionaries of our true national greatness. America has managed to survive the great and foolish alike; perhaps not without scars, but always with a renewed sense that our democratic ideals are revolutionary and remain the best example for a free and just world.

Those who were our greatest presidents acted as if they embodied singular and genuine public ethics regardless of the peculiarities of their private lives. Some recognized that they, as president, lead from a position of being a citizen among a nation of peers. The honorable burden of representing this nation is one that is granted, not taken. Others, while wealthy, excelled by acting upon the realization that out of great privilege comes a great responsibility. Our democracy will not thrive if this is forgotten. The very best presidents demanded of us that we attend to a real justice for all people even if it meant the denial of legalities that had been the morals of our nation. America is far more than just a nation of laws.

America has also been fortunate to have ethical, if weak, presidents. While we may not have thrived under those who’s principled forethought did not match the cynicism of the times or who, to the best of their abilities, actualized a reasoned position which failed, our nation was stronger for the public debate they created.

We have not been fortunate when men of mediocre intelligence are swept into office. America has had to endure presidents hiding their increasing senility and dementia under an actor’s mask, those whose small-minded greed led them to forget the best interests of our nation’s citizens, or those ignorant men who took office as part of a political machine.

Anyway, good or bad, our democracy has persevered so very durably, correcting errors, striving to enhance the lives of its citizens. As insufferable as it may be to have that dishonest, fraudulent, weak, little man, G.W. Bush, as our president, I have hope that a just democracy will prevail.


Post a Comment

<< Home