Thursday, January 26, 2012


Obama is talking less about hope these days, mentioning the word hardly at all, being, in general, less explicit about it than he was in the previous campaign. Has hope become unimportant to him then, or is it simply the natural progression of events in the career of a man who took on the mantle of power with great passion and discovered that, without the ongoing sacrificing support of many others, he cannot fix everything? If I were in charge of the world, I’d call him up and ask him, but since I am busy, and he is so hard to reach, I’ll bet on the natural progression theory.
I remember how he thrilled me back in 2008 with his ever-present use of the word in all its forms, his passionate support for hope, his gathering of hope around stories for the past, his urging of a country—no, the world—to move toward it. I remember how it warmed me to see how a message of hope brought the citizens of a country together to vote in a manner they likely had not intended at the start of the campaign. Here was evidence of hope in action, the realization of a hope lady’s dream.
Obama is still doing hope work today, albeit in a more subtle way, working, as we say in hope studies, implicitly rather than explicitly with hope. He’s finding hopeful stories from the past. He’s praising good work in the present. He’s using the word imagination and setting up the picture of a possible future.
Yes, I say it’s a natural progression, much like the one we see in so many instances. Explicit talk of hope gets you started, and then you get down to the hard stuff. Those who have a natural tendency to be hopeful handle the hard stuff more gently, more positively than those who prefer to embrace the future by bashing their opponents to smitherines in a good scrap.
That said, THE HOPE LADY is watching, hoping, for signs that Obama has not forgotten how important it is to mention hope every once in a while.

No comments: