Taken from Barack Obama's speech last night in New Hampshire.
Gracious. Uplifting. Powerful.
...But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope. For when we have faced down impossible odds; when we've been told that we're not ready, or that we shouldn't try, or that we can't, generations of Americans have responded with a simple creed that sums up the spirit of a people.
Yes we can.
... Yes we can to justice and equality. Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity. Yes we can heal this nation. Yes we can repair this world. Yes we can.
And so tomorrow, as we take this campaign South and West;... we will remember that there is something happening in America; that we are not as divided as our politics suggests; that we are one people; we are one nation; and together, we will begin the next great chapter in America's story with three words that will ring from coast to coast; from sea to shining sea - Yes. We. Can.
I'm behind this man. Have been for nearly a year now, ever since he declared his candidacy. And I was chomping at the bit to get involved with his campaign on the state/local level. But party politics got in my way, with the Florida Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee at odds regarding the timing of the Florida primary, scheduled for January 29th. Cardinal sin: it's prior to the magic February 5th date set as the starting point for all but a few chosen states. Per Howard Dean, my primary in my state will amount to nothing more than a straw ballot. And no candidates on my team have campaigned here at all.
Frankly, I think both sides have shot themselves in the foot -- the state, for bucking the system and the DNC for refusing to budge. Which is ridiculous on a lot of levels, considering that Dems have a real chance to take the White House this go-round, sporting some very viable candidates. It's not like Florida's a low-key, low-action battleground... anyone remember the chaotic brouhaha of 2000? I thought so. Honestly, there's a bigger picture here -- winning the election -- that should supersede any of this party posturing and infighting. At least in my opinion.
I have family members (none of my friends, ironically, are on the same political team as I am -- they refer to me affectionately as their tree-hugging hippie friend. Evs.) who are so fed up with this Democratic pissing match that they're considering re-registering as an Independent in a "screw-you-guys" (tm Cartman) protest. I'm not there yet -- maybe because my idealism is showing and I continue to believe that things will eventually work out come convention time.
I am pissed, though, that I haven't been able to work for a candidate that I fervently believe in -- haven't had this passion for a candidate and what he/she stands for since 1992. And I'll leave it at that.
Maybe I'll get my chance to do more than just send an e-contribution as the year progresses. Although I do have to say that I'm not missing the proliferation of political ads that seem to glut the airwaves this time of year. But with the writers' strike still in effect, I'm not watching all that much TV now as it is... yet another irony.
Regardless, I'll stay tuned to CNN and CNN.com and read the pundits and hope that when I do cast my ballot on January 29th, that it won't end up being for naught anywhere along the line.
Let me leave you with the political concept I hold most dear -- it's a critical time in our country. Regardless of where you stand politically or ideally or whatever... vote. Just go to the polls and hit that touch screen. It's our privilege, our right, our obligation. And casting your vote gives you the right to complain about the outcome, the results, the government. If you don't vote, you forfeit that right, intangibly anyway -- as far as I'm concerned.
So just do it. It's a good thing.