Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Historical Times, Historical Election

These are certainly historical times, and this has been an historical election. We have the first African-American as president-elect, something I didn’t think I would see in my lifetime.

The Obama Presidency

Obama is an intelligent man and I believe he is smart enough to surround himself with the best people. He has seen in George Bush what it looks like to fail miserably as president, and I don’t think he wants something like that as his legacy. I don’t think he is as ideologically-driven as some in Washington, although in his first 100 days he will take care of some of his special interest supporters such as gays, abortion rights people, environmentalists, and maybe labor. Nevertheless, I think he realizes he is the president of all the people, not just those on the left and the special interests. Once someone is in office, they often tend to drift towards the middle, where most of their constituents are.

I believe Obama will be starting his presidency with a lot of political capital on the international scene. If he uses it wisely, he can establish better relations throughout the world. We need to get back into right relationship with our European allies, and work effectively with Russia, moderate Islamic leaders, and other nations. He will have to build coalitions among interested nations to deal with hot spots such as Iran and North Korea, not to mention Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The People Have Spoken

In the 2006 election and again last night, the people spoke loudly. They threw out the do nothing Republicans, who squandered a great opportunity to actually accomplish something in Washington. Although they were hindered by certain Democrats, such as Tom Daschle, they still could have worked out compromises. Now a lot has to get done in a short time, and I think both Obama and Congress realize that they had better perform. If they don’t conduct the people’s business and address many of the problems facing this country, they will be voted out. No more business and usual. I think that’s what people meant when they talked about “change.” More power to the people!

In God We Trust

I urge you to pray for the president and the congress, that God will give them wisdom to make the right decisions, that they will put aside petty partisanship and ideological differences and fix what’s wrong with this country, and that they won’t be influenced by the special interests. Pray also that you and I don’t think our salvation rests with a new president, a better congress, more government programs, or anything else but God and God alone. Only God, working through human intermediaries, can move this country and the world in better directions.

Do Your Part

Let me also remind you that the responsibility does not rest only with our government officials, but with every citizen. We must participate in the political process by holding our officials accountable, and making sacrifices ourselves. Get involved in your kid’s school, don’t buy a gas-guzzling vehicle, begin to save some money, help a neighbor in need, contribute to charitable organizations, and pray for our country.

May God bless this country and its new administration.

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