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Posts Tagged ‘Obama’

mapleleafI’ve lived through many Thanksgiving gatherings. Some more pleasant than others. This year as I get ready to embark on this year’s Thanksgiving journey, I felt the need to think about and express the things I am truly thankful for.

I am grateful that, in spite of times that were difficult, and the many days I faltered, I continued to pursue happiness so that I am able to see that many of the small things in life are truly very large gifts.

I am grateful for my friends, who share many of my interests and, more importantly, my view of life. Who brought to my attention the Eckhart Tolle book, “A New Earth”, which was an answer to my prayers.

Thankful too that Mr. Tolle wrote the book that changed my outlook on how to live life for the better. Who allowed me to see that in the face of any difficulty – this too shall pass. For my friend who called me to watch that particular episode of Oprah’s show which led to participating in the ten week series of Oprah’s “A New Earth” webcasts along side Mr. Tolle.

I am also grateful for Oprah’s generosity in hosting this webcast for free to thousands around the world. At the beginning of each show, when we all stopped, took a deep breathe and shared those moments together was magical. A global meditation, a silent prayer of unity, an inspiration of hope. I am truly grateful that I chose to and did participate.

Some of the things I am grateful for are sometimes taken for granted. I wake up every morning safe and sound. That I have been blessed with continued good health. That I have a husband and two boys who love me even through those times I was so discouraged and depressed over not finding a job. For overlooking my many flaws and loving me in spite of the fact that I’m not the Suzy homemaker they would truly love me to be.

I am grateful that we all are in good health and we share a nice home in a good neighborhood. Many people around the world can’t say that, and I am thankful that I can, while hopeful that in the future the ills of our planet can be healed.

Grateful too, that Barack Obama won the election. I think my hope in the future would have died if the outcome had been different. I am overwhelmed by this gift of hope.

I was delighted to have re-connected with an old childhood friend this year, who also shared my enthusiasm for Obama’s campaign. I am so grateful that the friendship that developed when we were very young was never lost, and has now been found again.

Finding a place where I can share my voice is something I am so thankful for. I am truly grateful that I found Word Press who freely gives us this opportunity. So too am I grateful for one particular reader I know only as Zuy, who touched my very essence with an essay on hope that caused my shell to crack so that I could finally emerge and find my way. I will always be grateful for you.

I am grateful that the price of gas is a lot cheaper now than it was a few months – even a year ago. It makes my trip to visit my parents and siblings in another state more affordable.

While I wish my husband and boys could go along with me on this trip, I am thankful that I still have my parents and I can visit them. That we, my parents, my sisters and their families will all be together this year. Living so far away makes it difficult to see them as often as I would like, but I am hopeful that the future will bring us more happy events that bring us all altogether.

And I am grateful to our Creator, who set us upon this earth as caretakers so that we can enjoy all of His creation. All we need to do is open our eyes, our ears and our hearts to all His wonders that surround us and enjoy them more.

My wish for you dear reader, is that you have a joyous Thanksgiving Day. That you have a little more to eat than you need to and that you share your laughter with many friends and family.

Blessings to each and every one of you and your families and friends.

Juedz

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Who doesn’t remember where they were the morning of 9/11? When they first heard that one, then another plane had hit the World Trade Center towers. How can we ever forget the footage of the towers plunging to the ground, and the devastation we witnessed that morning?

I remember waking that morning and my husband telling me a plane had hit one of the WTC towers. WHAT?

Jumping out of bed and running to the tv, I witnessed seeing another plane crashing into the second tower. Was I watching a repeat of the event? My husband had said one tower. No – it was happening live, right in front of my eyes. My mind went blank in disbelief, and my husband said – “it has to be terrorists”.

As the media caught up with my husband’s observation, and the connection to the Taliban and Osama bin Laden was made, we witnessed – in shock – how horrible the situation in Afghanistan was under the rule of the Taliban. What horrified me was watching footage of the women being trucked into a public area and shot for menial “crimes”.

It was the plight of the women of Afghanistan that touched my heart.

I also knew that a war was inevitable. It was only a matter of time. America will get Bid Laden. We had no doubt. In that moment, our nation was unified.

At that time, I was taking a video editing class. Our current assignment was a music video, and we were free to use whatever song we desired. Although there were several I had been thinking of using to create this assignment, the magnitude of 9/ll made one stand out as very relevant to this event and my personal feelings about it.

The song, “We Don’t Need Another Hero”, performed by Tina Turner in the movie “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” seemed to have been written as a preordained commentary to the 9/11 event. As well as a plea from the citizens of Afghanistan and the world.

Here are the lyrics:

Out of the ruins
Out from the wreckage
Can’t make the same mistake this time
We are the children
The last generation
We are the ones they left behind
And I wonder when we are ever gonna change
Living under the fear till nothing else remains

We don’t need another hero
We don’t need to know the way home
All we want is life beyond the thunderdome

Looking for something we can rely on
There’s got to be something better out there
Love and compassion, their day is coming
All else are castles built in the air
And i wonder when we are ever gonna change
Living under the fear till nothing else remains
All the children say

We don’t need another hero
We don’t need to know the way home
All we want is life beyond the thunderdome

So, what do we do with our lives
We leave only a mark
Will our story shine like a light
Or end in the dark
Give it all or nothing

While listening to this song, over and over, I was watching the news almost non-stop. Bid Laden was emerging as a hero to many in the Islamic world. I started recording all the news coverage and other programs about Afghanistan and the tragedy of 9/11 and I used some of this footage in my music video editing assignment. It was and still is a very powerful and moving music video. (I wish I could share this video with you, but I’m uncertain how to do that using the song and plundered tv footage.)

As I sit, writing this blog, I’m listening to the song again – I can’t help the tears that continue to well up as I fathom how great a failure the past 8 years have been toward our goal of getting rid of the people who not only attacked us, but are again gaining ground in Afghanistan.

One of my more ardent objections to going to war in Iraq was that, once again it seemed, we were choosing to abandon the people of a country who truly wanted our help and friendship. People who, with hope, longed for us to rescue them. Is it any wonder that people around the world are just as disgusted with this current American administration as we are? Finding Bid Laden and Al Qaida was the “Just Cause”. Yet, through deception, this administration has bankrupted our country for their own self interests, abandoned those who would have embraced us and created more enemies who pose to cause us more harm.

This administration has not only trampled on our hearts, but also those of the people in the world, who – in spite of everything – still look to America as a symbol of hope, freedom and justice. We’ve all been betrayed.

Obama touched a nerve in all of us during his campaign when he focused his attention on Afghanistan. A country and an opportunity this administration lost has now been found with the incoming new administration. Wrongs can be righted. It is our only hope.

I know it’s not going to be easy. However, as an American, I’ve always known in my heart that finishing the job in Afghanistan is the right thing to do.

For all of us, the people in Afghanistan and the world.

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I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m sick of the all the media coverage of Sarah Palin.

This will be my only comment on this topic. We’re so inundated with Sarah Palin news on the media these days that it is now quite easy for me to return to my real life without watching any news at all.

Prior to the 2008 election, I had stopped watching any news, except for an occasional view of BBC America. What prompted me to totally stop watching? Well, basically the totally biased coverage of the 2000 election was the beginning of the end for me. I felt – as many Republicans complain of now – that the media coverage at that time had a biased slant toward Bush, and not so much Gore. They were more fixated on Clinton’s morality than on Gore. But I continued to watch, even after the election – with one exception. I have never been able to watch and listen to Bush speak. Some say he is intelligent, however I’ve never seen any evidence of that when he speaks. So, whenever he came on the news, I would simply change the channel. As news coverage continued to feature him – the less I watched the news. I never watched any of his State of the Union addresses. Just couldn’t stomach watching or listening.

Then, 9/11 happened. And we all were fixated on that event and the political issues surrounding it. However, I still clicked to any non-news program as soon as Bush came on.

Then the 2004 election. Again, biased coverage toward Bush, against Kerry. So, since I had made my decision to vote for Kerry, and didn’t need the aggravation of biased news coverage – I simply stopped watching the news altogether.

Fast forward to the 2008 Democratic Convention. Since I had stopped watching the news, and the Democratic candidate was Barack Obama, I needed to know more about him. I had hoped that Hillary Clinton would have been the candidate, but that just didn’t happen. I also only knew what people I knew had hinted to along with my own questions about a man with such an unusual name, and how he raised so much money.

After watching the convention, I knew he was the right candidate. A man who can actually articulate thoughts intelligently! How refreshing. I was also impressed that he had graduated from both Columbia and Harvard. And he did so on his own with scholarships and student loans. Yes, he was a community organizer – you know where his heart is. He was a person we can be proud of to represent us to the rest of the world, and that is very important.

What was even more exciting was that I found MSNBC. A station that now had news people who were actually FOR my candidate. I fell in love with Chris Matthews, Keith Oberman and Rachel Maddow. I became addicted to MSNBC. While most other main stream media stations were more positive about Obama, they still didn’t have the heart I found at MSNBC. I was watching Chris, Keith and Rachel almost all night – every show and repeat!

Then the announcement of Sarah Palin as McCain’s running mate. It was clear, from the very first Katie Couric interview, that this was another Bush – a person who can’t articulate her thoughts, (if she has any), or think on her feet. It was obvious to me that she was picked because she’s “pretty”, and because she is a woman and the Republicans thought they could win Hillary supporters on that basis. How out of touch can anyone be to think that Sarah Palin comes even close to the character and accomplishments of Hillary Clinton?

Then media coverage turned into the non-stop Sarah Pain show. I don’t even want to go into all the lies she spouted, or her actual connections of palling around with radical secessionist groups. But I do want to say, that I was amazed at the lack of media coverage of these facts.

While I applaud Keith Oberman and Rachel Maddow on their coverage of this issue, I was disgusted that Chris Matthews did not. Even when come of his guests mentioned the topic of her connection to AIK, he would “sush” them. Chris was enamored with Sarah from the beginning – she’s so pretty.

The most irritating thing during the campaign was that the amount of time MSNBC gave to covering Palin and McCain was far greater than to Obama and Biden.

And the fascination with Sarah Palin continues. Can’t we just let her go the way of Geraldine Ferraro? Maybe they’ve all been “bewitched”.

Maybe it’s a good thing. I’m now almost back to my regular life, watching anything but the news all day. I’ve tried watching Chris, but he’s still infatuated with Sarah – and while Keith and Rachel do focus on other issues – they can’t seem to help themselves. I’m down to watching less than one of their shows each. As soon as Sarah appears – I click to something else – anything else. The thrill of watching all the show repeats has definitely gone.

I’m not surprised to hear that their ratings fell – when we all click to something else – they have no viewers. I’ll try watching, I do like their coverage of everything else. But just know – that as soon as Sarah comes on – I’m gone.

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I woke up this morning and something seemed different. A new sense of calm. Of right direction. Not only for myself, but as something you can feel in the air.

I continue to watch some of the news about Obama’s new administration choices and what I find remarkable is that, with few exceptions – most are positive and hopeful. Even those stations that are pro-Republicans are somewhat toned down in their viciousness.

At the moment, I’m watching the Bush family welcome the Obama’s into the White House.

One of the things I feel is that with the Obama Presidency, all of us will be in there with him. I am hopeful that what I sensed in Obama as a candidate – that he will work on behalf of us, the American citizenry – and that he will keep us informed as to what is happening will in fact be what we experience.

I wonder if anyone else senses this shift in the air? That hopefulness for the future that seems to have permeated most everyone around the globe since his election. Only time will tell if all the ills of the past which derailed our country – and our planet – can be put back on a new track for the future.

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It’s the day after the election and I’m still addicted to the news coverage of the election. I’ve watched practically non-stop since the Democratic Convention, which was the first time I really saw him as a candidate.

I am a white female in my mid fifties. My story includes the fact that my view of the world includes growing up seeing the beginning of the civil rights movement. Being from the south, I remember the civil rights marches in Greensboro, NC and Danville, VA. I have always been thankful that my family, particularly my grandfather, taught me that all men are equal and that that is how we treat others – no matter the color of their skin. Equality in how we treat others was one of the most important lessons I grew up with. That was a very radical stance back in the late 50’s and early 60’s.

In 1967, the first black student was placed in our school. We shared class together, and it was fortunate that her father was a brick layer that my contractor father worked with regularly. My Dad had a great respect for her father, and we became friends. This, of course was an unpopular position. We ate alone together in the cafeteria as no one would have anything to do with a “black” person. It was as if she – and I by association – had some incurable plague. I remember kids, sitting in class, throwing spit balls at her. As we progressed to high school, again we were caught up in civil rights divisions and confrontations at school.

Yesterdays victory for Obama is a major turning point in our American evolution.

While I appreciate the historical value of this event, the fact that Obama is black had nothing to do my decision to vote for him. In some ways it is a shallow commentary on the news today, as the fact that he is black had nothing to do with the reasons I voted for him. It is merely a side note.

What appealed to me was his education, and how he achieved it. I was attracted to the hope that we could have a President who could articulate thought, quite elegantly. One of my major disappointments with George W. Bush was how embarrassingly stupid he appeared when trying to communicate – anything! He was the American Joke who was also our selected self-serving leader. To me, he lowered our dignity as Americans and I think I lot of people felt that way. Bush never represented what I love about being an American, our ideals of freedom and justice. His position on human rights is appalling and does not represent the ideals of the American I love.

My vote for Obama was a vote for us to return to having a chief representative of our government who not only garners our confidence in ourselves as Americans, but also in the office of President. To go even further, having Obama in office will now promote a new confidence in America that has erroded with each passing year of the Bush administration.

I also voted for him because, contrary to the McCain campaign, he has the right experience and the motivation to govern. Over the past 8 years, I’ve never felt our government reflected We The People – just we the big oil companies. I never felt connected to the Bush administration in any way, and felt he was placed in his presidency to do the bidding of those hungry for power and used this position to fuel the greed and profits for the top 5%. In every way he trampled on our dignity and misrepresented the goodness of Americans to the world. The plight of the remaining 95% was never more than an afterthought to his own personal agenda.

I voted for Obama because he knows that it is the 95% of us that are the backbone of our country. His philosophy that it is when we all have the opportunity to live abundantly, that the top 5% will also prosper. I’ve never understood the “tickle down” approach. How can any company do well if no one can afford to buy its product or service?

I also saw in Obama a steadiness in his reasoning process. If we’ve learned nothing else from the Bush administration, it is that anyone can be President – even idiots. We’ve also learned just how wrong that can be without someone who has the intelligence to analyze the problems and come to thoughtful solutions that are in the best interest of all.

None of these abilities has anything to do with being black. These are abilities that many people all over the world possess and any person who ran for president with them would have gained my vote. I guess I’m color blind. Seeing the true essence of a person really is far more important.

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