It was a folksy way of telling the truth, for once.
What do we want for our future, friends? What do we hope for this country to be? We have an opening (or ope-nin’, as the case may be), and we have no excuse for sitting around moping.
How many times do we say we wish our lives were different, wish we weren’t so helpess to change, contemplate giving something up or taking something on but end up back on the couch or at the desk or on the job simply doing our daily lives?
Things are different, and they can be even more different. I take courage from the results, but I know that the hard work, as our President likes to put it, is only beginning. We don’t get to flee the other party; we have to co-operate with them. We don’t get to send them on a boat to Corta Rico or get on a bus to Canada ourselves; we have to live with them.
In families, in churches, in civic groups, there are so often two ways of thinking about what is the best course to follow, the best program to undertake, the best way to simply be. One group or one person will out-wait another, hoping for the opportunity to change things completely.
It doesn’t happen that way, friends, not most of the time. If we swing too far one way, the other side is waiting for the pendulum to swing back and hit us in that part we may wish were less of a target.
Whether it’s Democrats and Republicans, or developers and preservationists, or Young Turks and Olde Guarde, or husbands and wives, or parents and children, we don’t make real change until we actually face each other and talk about our differences, hear each other’s words, really hear them, even when the other’s way of thinking makes our ears bleed and our brains hurt.
It’s hard work. It’s harder than business. It’s harder than politics. It’s harder than war. But it holds the possibility of transformation.