Tuesday, January 25, 2011

This Land is Our Land

Tonight's State of the Union Address was shrouded in drama reminiscent of high school hallways. Words those congressmen and women hadn't uttered in decades...Who is your date for Tuesday night?...Do you have a date for the Prom yet?...were suddenly flying from their lips as they prepared and positioned themselves for tonight's speech. A congress united...in seating, anyway.

It was a symbolic gesture and one that may not have even occurred had a mentally unstable man not put a bullet through the brain of one of their own. Even Obama joined in on the centralist love by sporting a purple tie for the event...not red, not blue...the bipartisan hue. Having canceled cable last week, I had to listen to the speech on XM Radio's CNN channel. That made it unusually difficult to tell who was clapping where. Did McConnell cheer when he mentioned cutting non-essential military spending? Did Pelosi clap wildly when he spoke of the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell? Who knows. Not me. I think there was booing at the mention of his health care bill, but then I would think that booing at the President would be frowned upon. This is not Britain, after all.

What I do know is that he gave an extra shout-out to our military who are serving bravely in all of our various locations overseas. And to the families who have stayed behind. Democrat or Republican or Tea Party, you can't help but agree with that.

"We must never forget that the things we've struggled for, and fought for, live in the hearts of people everywhere. And we must always remember that the Americans who have borne the greatest burden in this struggle are the men and women who serve our country.
Tonight, let us speak with one voice in reaffirming that our nation is united in support of our troops and their families. Let us serve them as well as they have served us - by giving them the equipment they need; by providing them with the care and benefits they have earned; and by enlisting our veterans in the great task of building our own nation." ~President Obama, State of the Union, 25 January, 2011

I would venture to say that everyone clapped for that one. I am not here to press my politics on anyone. Although, as a family member in the U.S. Army, I am discouraged from saying anything negative about our Commander in Chief. Not that I would, anyway. He is our ultimate boss and trash-talking the authority only weakens morale. But I appreciate that President Obama always takes an opportunity to thank our military and the families and reminds a country who sometimes forgets that we are still at war and our troops still need our support. 

Overall, I think the speech was vague and full of rhetoric that works on the battlefield but rarely works on Capitol Hill. We are a cynical and exhausted nation that needs a plan with defined goals, but I trust that our government remembers who hired them and why they are there in the first place. Naive, maybe, but so is thinking that republicans sharing armrests with democrats will carry over to Wednesday morning. However, it could just work...


  1. What a beautiful post.

    I think that, as a nation, we should be focusing on the troops and what they do for us...if anything can unite, it has to be that.

  2. I don't know if it's sad or awesome that I have more respect for the men who serve than those who "govern." Democrat, Republican, doesn't matter. What keeps me awake at night is that others are risking their lives, not whether those on the Hill are doing their jobs. Politics just aren't my thing. Color me jaded, I guess.

  3. As I was sitting in my jury duty orientation today, the judge doing the "orienting" asked the people whom had served in the military to raise their hands. Her point in doing this was to acknowledge that, while 30 days of calling in every day is an inconvenience, it isn't truly serving. The military truly serves our country.


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