Another world is not only possible,
she is on her way.
On a quiet day, if you listen carefully,
you can hear her breathing.

- Arundhati Roy -

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Taking Down The Signs and Leaning Over The Fences

Friday afternoon (Halloween) I was standing on a street corner with about 15
other Obama supporters on each side of the stop light in Freeland watching
the reaction of people driving by. Many smiles, some frowns, the occasional
down-thumb. And then a big guy on a big motorcycle came by, very slowly
passing right in front of us shouting obscenities about the "f-king
liberals" and the ruination of his America. It was quite a verbal assault,
finished by a roar of his bike pipes and off he went.

It made me think, again, we have to stop this raging at each other. It seems
to me that those on the right feel a sense of entitlement to rage, to
lashing out when threatened--and I am sure there are those on the left who
do the same. And all it does is widen the divide and increase fear.

Walking back to my truck a bit later, holding my Obama sign to my chest I
could feel my heart swell with hope like I have not allowed myself in a long
time. I sat in the truck cab and cried and asked myself, "How will I handle
it if McCain snatches victory from the jaws of defeat?"
And it gave me great
empathy for those walking back to their vehicles clutching McCain signs to
their chests.

So the next day, on my way to phone banks and canvassing undecided voters,
when I saw the McCain people out at another corner down the highway I
determined to walk up to every person I see who is wearing a McCain button,
holding a McCain sign, or has a McCain bumper-sticker,and extending my hand
to shake theirs. "Hello, I'm your neighbor, Christina, in Freeland. Deep
down, I believe we have similar values and dreams and come Wednesday, you
can count on me to include you in my vision of America... Can I count on you?"

This is the question. And I invite you to start asking it--for Wednesday
morning is just the beginning of an era of citizen involvement
that must go
on for the rest of our lives. This citizen involvement will have many facets
as we learn how to communicate more and more effectively with our elected
officials, and our new president. And it will be sustained at the local
level. You can count on me... And I know I can count on you.

And for the inspiration part: this American Prayer song is a must see--just as this vote is a must believe!

Christina Baldwin