January 20, 2009

Tomorrow is Now?

I was waiting to feel something profound today. I saw the swearing in. I saw the parade. I saw the speech. But it still hasn't made me feel what I hoped I might. Perhaps my anger at, yet collaboration with, the political spirit of the last twenty years, with its persistance of selfishness and squelching of generosity, has deafened my heart to what could be.

Could we all believe in each other again? As in the book of Revelation where the lion lies down with the lamb, will free-market conservatives, morality-driven evangelicals, security-focused nationalists, peace-seeking liberals, helping-hand populists, and all other stripes and philosophies of Americans, really soften their stances and reach out their hands?

If so, what will I have to give up -- to the Rick Warrens, the Rush Limbaughs, the Michael Savages, the Ann Coulters? If they do not change their poison for honey, should I still open myself to them?

Sadly, today I have no answers. But I have hope they will come.

January 12, 2009

Bishop Robinson

CNN reports that openly gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson "will deliver the invocation at the kickoff inauguration event Sunday at the Lincoln Memorial." This seems like some sort of a consolation prize to progressives and liberals for the selection of Rick Warren to lead the invocation at the inauguration itself. But if conservatives do not make a fuss about Bishop Robinson's inclusion, maybe Obama's strategy for bringing us all together is actually working.

January 05, 2009

Senate or Oligarchy?

Harry Reid disturbed me yesterday on Meet the Press when he said repeatedly and emphatically that the Senate decides who sits in the Senate. The truth is that the Senate is the judge of the constitutional qualifications of incoming Senators and seats them on that basis. By all accounts, Roland Burris has been legally appointed by the governor of Illinois to assume Barack Obama's vacated place in the Senate and meets those qualifications. The philosophy that Senators sit at the pleasure of the Senate, not for the terms to which they have been elected by the voters of their state (or in this case, by gubernatorial appointment), is slouching towards an oligarchy exercising arbitrary power. The Senate should seat Roland Burris and, if they feel they must, begin an investigation into any malfeasance on his part (for which now there is absolutely no evidence) and then expel him if compelling evidence is discovered. In a true democracy, the rule of law is paramount.