President Barack Obama–the Unity Leader

November 5, 2008 § Leave a comment

Democratic candidate Barack Obama has just been elected the 44th U.S. President. I just finished watching Obama deliver his acceptance speech. It was a speech that I think would be the subject of study and talk for years. It’s a speech that encapsulated what Americans really hope their government would do for them–unite them and rebuild their nation from the damages wrought by years of excesses.

Truly, that speech was more than presidential. It was the most ideal speech ever to be made by a U.S. president. Faced with crises and threats of monumental proportions, Barack Obama said the right things at the right time–change can only happen, if Americans unite behind government.

” Two hundred twenty one years ago,” says Obama, “…we Americans build this country, brick by brick with out callous hands….Let us build it again.”

For those words alone, Obama earned the respect and admiration of those who still doubt whether all those honey-coated words could really turn reality. For a brief moment, Americans felt hope, that, things would really turn from worst to something really good.

Hope is what Americans really need at this point. Hope that their lives would turn around.

As I was listening to Obama, I was thinking of our own situation. If Obama succeeds in uniting and shepherding his country towards economic relief, what about us? If America can produce such a fine young leader with the integrity and vision, why can’t we?

Maybe we’re looking in the wrong places. Maybe we are hoping for something which does’nt suit us. Nine years ago, we hoped that an economist could do a miracle and save us from a inept administration, only to be frustrated when the new government provided not leadership nor hope, but utter dismay and disillusionment. 

We succeeded in launching two revolts, hoping that things would change, only to realize later that massing all those millions is not enough to put our house in order. Maybe popular revolts is not the way for us. Maybe we just need someone who’ll provide us the vision, the direction, and the map to do it. And maybe, just maybe what we need is someone who’ll distill all these disparate voices we hear from different groups among us and put it as one voice. One voice, one nation. 

Americans are lucky. Because in less than two centuries they have produced a fine, young leader who’s willing to take the cudgels of bringing their country together to face its challenges, and threats. Yes, America is facing war and destruction in almost all fronts. Yet, they have the spark of inspiration to rally behind a leader who promises to make that change happen.

Obama’s message is as clear as the summer’s day–hope and change rest in every American. It’s a message of hope, I think, not just for Americans, but also for Filipinos.

That, when faced with extreme challenges, hope springs from unity and not from individuality.

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