>> Thursday, January 22, 2009
The day before Barack Obama was sworn in as our 44th president an artist's lifesize likeness of him rode through downtown Des Moines on a donkey surrounded by black SUV's and "secret service". (as reported by KCCI but the video is nowhere to be found on their website now)
The unveiling of his likeness at Madam Tussard's in London is "melting people's hearts" according to this video.
"I'll do whatever he says to do," actress Halle Berry said to the Philadelphia Daily News. "I'll collect paper cups off the ground to make his pathway clear."
While I understand the excitement that surrounds this president the elation and the worship confuse me. Obviously the likeness of him riding a donkey through the streets is meant to be symbolic of Jesus - the only thing missing was the waving of palm branches.
""No one saw him coming, and Christians believe God comes at us from strange angles and places we don't expect, like Jesus being born in a manger." --Lawrence CarterReally, I truly understand the significance of this man becoming the President of the United States. I hope this can help to put the issue of race and power to rest. And I pray every night that he is the greatest leader since Lincoln. While I didn't vote for him, he is my President. (I won't be getting a bumper sticker that says otherwise.) Though I may not agree with him I won't be calling him ignorant or poking fun at his speaking abilities without a teleprompter.
"Many even see in Obama a messiah-like figure, a great soul, and some affectionately call him Mahatma Obama." -- Dinesh Sharma
"He communicates God-like energy..." -- Steve Davis (Charleston, SC)
"Obama's finest speeches do not excite. They do not inform. They don't even really inspire. They elevate. . . . He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh . . . Obama is, at his best, able to call us back to our highest selves." -- Ezra Klein
"We're here to evolve to a higher plane . . . he is an evolved leader . . . [he] has an ear for eloquence and a Tongue dipped in the Unvarnished Truth." -- Oprah Winfrey
The office of President deserves respect, thus the person who holds that office receives it. Because, ultimately, that person holds my very life in his hands. It is through his actions that my children's ultimate safety lies. It is through his appointments that our future prosperity and power is determined. It is through his direction that our country follows.
So, yes, he is powerful. But he is not God. And as I read the quotes and see the coverage that seems to elevate him to that status I wonder just how long it will last. I truly believe that campaign promises cannot always be kept and that idealism is always more golden than the reality that follows.
The office that Mr. Obama now holds has more facets than any one individual can imagine (hence the enormous staff); each portion's brilliance dependent upon the others to keep our country shining as brightly as it has for over 200 years.
But... He's going to do things that even his most passionate supporters won't like. He's going to pass policies that keep us in the Middle East. He's going to raise taxes on those he promised not to - or (gasp!) he may even leave the Bush tax cuts in place. He may "close" Guantanamo - but is moving those detainees into the US really any different?
I guess what I'm really trying to get to is that old adage, "The bigger they are the harder they fall". I don't believe that Barack Obama has elevated himself to the level of celebrity/adulation/god-like stature that he seems to be at. None-the-less, he has been placed on a pretty high pedestal. One that I am doubtful he can remain on. No one could. He is, after all, only a man.
At Boudicca's Voice: Notice to America