Over the last week I have had many conversations about President Obama's debate performance. One idea common to these dialogues is that Americans love to abdicate their power to someone who they have decided will save the day. The moment that "savior" drops the ball, as President Obama appeared to do during the debate, our fear takes over, and we run to the hills for cover. These conversations have confirmed for me that we are on the sidelines of our their lives, watching and wringing our hands to see what will happen to us.
It's time for a reality check. President Obama is not a savior. We should not give our power to him (or any other leader for that matter). In order for politics to work well, we must all consciously participate. When we don't, we think the sky is going to fall down the minute our perceived savior does not show up. This last week we have been inundated with negative comments in the media about President Obama's debate performance. The pundits are confused, the bloggers are blaming, and the citizens are angry. But no one is asking himself, "What can I do help?" With all the blaming and name-calling, I have not heard anyone ask, "How can I pick up some of the slack?"
If the Democrats are going to win this election, I believe it is imperative that they stay focused on what it is they desire, rather than being distracted by what they fear. If ever they needed to play a team sport, this is the time to do so. Now is the time to ask yourself, "What can I do to assist my country and fellow citizens in creating the nation I desire to live in?" Stop blaming President Obama for what you don't have, and do the thing you can do to create what you want.
The people with whom I've spoken recently are those who rarely, if ever, take active leadership or participate in political events. These are the people standing on the sidelines complaining and criticizing, waiting for someone to come and save them. On the other hand, the people who are busy working for the outcome they desire noticed what happened in the debate, felt disappointed, and then got up and started working harder toward their goal.
Empowered people will make the difference in this election and in this nation. Empowered people will be okay regardless of who wins and becomes president. Why? Because empowered people don't wait for anyone to make their lives better. Empowered people don't sit around and complain when things don't go their way. Empowered people don't feel victimized because they know they themselves can either fix what is broken or, at the very least, participate in the repairs.
This election might be one of the great defining events of our time. Are we spectators standing on the sideline, waiting to see if our guy will win, or are we in the game playing for the victory we desire? If we drop the ball, do we go home in defeat or pick it up and throw to first? Decide quickly because the time is now.
With only several weeks left before we go into the voting booths, there's no time to be wasted. Do whatever you must to stay focused on the victory. Turn off your television. Stop reading the news. Tell your Debbie Downer friends to stop calling. Get to work doing something toward the end you desire. Ultimately you will determine our future by the thoughts and feelings you have, the attitude you adopt, and the actions you take today. You are the answer to our future. You.