As you know, President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 on Friday. To the naysayers and the crabs, I have a message: Get over it.
Obama himself said he does not deserve this prize. He hasn't done the work required to stand in the queue of those who have gone before him. I want to ask: Or has he?
What if the work at this point is simply to speak of a vision of peace? A vision that is held by many thinking people on our dear green marble Earth. Of course, Obama hasn't done the work. How could he have? Two wars, economic meltdown, health care gridlock. The man's busy.
What he's not too busy for is making the time to hold the vision. What he's not too busy for is to talk about that vision. Psalm 133 promises its readers that without a vision the people perish.
There was no vision under former President Bush, none that I could see anyway. No vision except war cronyism and the Republican Robin Hood version of prosperity where the rich get richer and the poor be damned. So what if the Nobel award was a recognition that our great country has moved on to better days, to better visions, to greater responsibility in the state of the whole world? Is that such a bad reason to win a prize?
I loved that Obama began his remarks with "Good morning. Well, this is not how I expected to wake up this morning. After I received the news, Malia walked in and said, 'Daddy, you won the Nobel Peace Prize, and it is Bo's birthday!' And then Sasha added, 'Plus, we have a three-day weekend coming up.' So it's good to have kids to keep things in perspective."
Yeah, it is. Kids, our kids, and the kids of our neighbors, and our grandkids and great grandkids are the most compelling reason I know to stand up and shout for Obama's win. Our visions are what will sustain those generations to make the changes that our planet so desperately needs.
The President was delightfully modest. "I am both surprised and deeply humbled by the decision of the Nobel Committee. Let me be clear: I do not view it as a recognition of my own accomplishments, but rather as an affirmation of American leadership on behalf of aspirations held by people in all nations."
Yeah, the guy has a vision -- a big vision, a good vision, an exciting vision, a motivating vision.
Like the truthteller he is, Obama went on, "And I know that throughout history, the Nobel Peace Prize has not just been used to honor specific achievement; it's also been used as a means to give momentum to a set of causes. And that is why I will accept this award as a call to action -- a call for all nations to confront the common challenges of the 21st century."
Momentum is exactly what this man's far-reaching vision needs. It's also precisely what the whining pundits, left and right, seem hell-bent (and I do mean hell -- of their own making) in destroying.
My fellow Americans, take it from a metaphysician: Life on Earth will survive because of the visions of humans like Barack Obama. If you don't want to play and you'd just rather complain, that's your right, but get out of the way while the rest of us get it done.
You see, Obama gets it. He really does. Without a vision people really do perish. And without the people a vision perishes.
He said, "This award is not simply about the efforts of my administration -- it's about the courageous efforts of people around the world." That would be all of us. All who stand with Obama and other visionary leaders to take our planet where She needs to be.
"And that's why this award must be shared with everyone who strives for justice and dignity -- for the young woman who marches silently in the streets on behalf of her right to be heard even in the face of beatings and bullets; for the leader imprisoned in her own home because she refuses to abandon her commitment to democracy; for the soldier who sacrificed through tour after tour of duty on behalf of someone half a world away; and for all those men and women across the world who sacrifice their safety and their freedom and sometimes their lives for the cause of peace."
Bottomline, dear one? Peace is really the only cause there is, and with leaders like Obama and those of us who support his visions, his words, and his actions, it's inevitable.
Congratulations, Mr. President.
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