For all its conflict, suspense, spy-vs.-spy thrills and road-raging races through bigotry, racism, fear-mongering, intelligence-gathering, gun-toting, vote-tampering, court-wrenching constitution-waving episodes of righteous indignation, the Obama presidency has to be one of the most interesting presidencies of all time.
Of course, not everything can be blamed or credited to or even hinged on this president. Technology is pushing us down a momentous path as well.
We wrestle with how to use our intelligence-gathering capabilities in a way that we still maintain our constitutional protections. It is a work in progress.
Yes, 9/11 made us paranoid, but we have seen into the rabbit hole, and we have found others looking back at us. To ignore this fact would be to cede the next great war (which may very well be a technology-based, information-stealing, server-destroying battle) before it even starts.
Every good movie has a conclusion, and I think in the end, what will be said about this presidency is that we came through it only to discover that our deepest fears were not real; that our lifelong prejudices were just that; that your religion, or lack thereof, isn’t evil; that the greatest wealth in the world is not in America, but in the hands of just a few hundred, highly protected individuals; and that much of what we have been fed for decades as truth is merely marketing by gun lobbies, car makers, insurance companies and the like.
This presidency affirms above all, the rights of people to fair and equitable compensation, to a sustainable environment, to creativity, to the ability to love whomever we choose.
This doesn’t mean we’ve moved very far down the road, but it is a momentous step down that path.
We have shaken off generations of hysteria and prejudice, and discovered once again that freedom requires great effort.