It occurs to me that I can't remember feelign this before. Feeling proud of the person my country has chosen as its leader. Oh sure I can appreciate, now that he's been out of office for nearly a decade, that Clinton is a brilliant speaker. (Sorry, Dad.) That guy knows how to give one hell of an address, no doubt about it. But back in the midst of his presidency? Hard to be proud of an unrepentant philanderer, never mind one dumb enough - and arrogant enough - to get caught. Repeatedly. And I don't think there has been a single occasion when ol' G-Dub has opened his mouth without causing me to wince in mortification or to seethe with rage...and sometimes both.
But here we are, with an Obama presidency on the horizon. Here is a man who speaks eloquently, who is (by all appearances) devoted to his family, who has inspired millions to have some hope in these increasingly cynical times. A man who doesn't dumb himself down, who isn't afraid to choose being our leader over trying to be our drinking buddy. A man who, thus far anyway, seems to have the respect of others around the world, rather than their snide derision.
I know that he could disappoint us, could disappoint me. But I don't think he will. More each day I am letting myself believe that he will be able to deliver. My optimism is cautious, but it is there. I'm not going to call him a messiah or anything silly like that, but I am willing to believe he will be a president I can be proud of. And I like that feeling.
(In sharp contrast to this newfound, unfamiliar pride and optimism, is my utter disgust at my fellow Californians for passing Proposition 8. Let people marry whomever they want, damnit. What is wrong with you? Ugh.)