In an ideal State Of The Union speech Obama would have appeared with his face covered in camo paint like Marlon Brando in Apocalypse Now glowering silently at the gaggle of impaired miscreants otherwise known as Republicans.
There is a tradition in the black church named "call and response." It's simply the experience of the preacher "calling" and the congregation "responding." Obama is ready to issue "calls" to the American people, over the heads of the Washington politicians and pundits. It's time for our response.
Activism works. To the extent that the president's words and deeds have become more progressive, it's because people took to the streets and spoke to our leaders with votes, emails, and phone calls. But there's more to be done. Much more.
We like the myth of a classless society because it corresponds nicely to the stories we like to tell ourselves about the United States and the American Dream. For these reasons, the GOP spin on social divisiveness gets some traction in the public.