As I watched President Obama address the nation on July 25th, I found myself trying to bring back the happiness I felt when I voted for him to be the leader of the free world. Then a familiar sensation enveloped me as I realized that I had done with candidate Obama what I had done with most of the men in my life, from my very first boyfriend, to my ex-husband, and on thru every other man I ever fell in love (or convinced myself I was in love) with. I listened to their story; let them tell me about their feelings, their dreams, what moved them deeply, how they saw the world, what they wanted to do, and all of the wonders that accompany discovering someone new. But what I almost always failed to recognize was that their words were both the truth and a combination of how they wanted to experience themselves and how they wanted to be seen, and I had the audacity to expect them all, including the President, to be everything they promised to be.
President Obama’s speech was followed by a rebuttal delivered by Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner, which basically boiled down to saying, “NO!” to every insight, every position, every passionate idea, and everything else the President offered to the country to help us get through these turbulent times.