Wednesday, January 14, 2009
The Revolution Will Not Be Inaugurated
This week brings the Inauguration of Barack Obama as President of the United States. Over the past few months, I’ve seen a great deal of angst among my progressive friends. Obama’s cabinet appointments reflect political reality, and this, apparently, comes as somewhat of a disappointment.
Let’s take a moment to reflect on where we are. The past thirty years have been defined by conservative laissez-faire economics, racist law and order politics, increasingly regressive taxation, growing inequality, and a militarized approach to foreign policy that has left America broke and going it alone. This ship won’t turn on a dime.
The Obama Administration’s promise of Change You Can Believe In cannot be realized from the top down. Social transformation arises from grassroots movements that are inspired by hope and the real possibility of progress. All of our presidents since Kennedy have known this and have lowered expectations. “Can’t win,” they’ve said, in so many words. “Don’t Try.”
This President has done the opposite. At the moment, that’s all that matters. If we do our work, the change will follow.