It won't be often, but sometimes I just need a break from thinking about the contentions, partisan, over-debated, and often infuriating subjects of technology and education. Politics isn't any of those things is it? Ok, phew!
If I’ve realized one thing about humans over the past year, it’s that it is worth listening to anyone who has a legacy to defend, and time running out to do so. Most recently, this has been exhibited by our typically diplomatic and soft-spoken president. Many argue that Obama’s stoic demeanor is his greatest weakness, but I think the next year will be an exquisite exhibition of the value of being an intelligent, compassionate leader during difficult times. Already within the first few months of Obama’s final year as president, he’s expressed an unfamiliar angle of thoughtful indignation that deserves recognition; one surely fueled by the recent attacks in Paris/perpetuation of Islamism (yes, religion IS the problem), continued congressional/media ignorance during political hunting season, and general anti-intellectualism.
During the early years of a presidency (or any finite position of leadership ), it’s clearly important to develop allies through non-confrontational diplomacy, but as the sand falls through the proverbial hourglass, we get an increasingly authentic view of the mental and moral thread used to stitch together the representative fabric of an individual's final legacy. Barack Obama encountered struggles (as anyone would, and everyone has, as the leader of the free world), but in a year’s time, I hope we have the critical perspective to look back on his presidency and realize what he achieved. If I can read the writing on the wall, I would bet we see an increasingly candid leader who leaves us with no alternative but to view his legacy in the light it deserves.
Though I suspect he will earn it, what does anyone really have to lose by respecting the president for his final year? Given what we've seen from the incoming class, I think it may be worth intently listening as he secures his historical legacy. After 2016, it may be a while before this country experiences an intellectual leader who understands how to be reasonable, judicious, gracious, and capable of requiring our full attention through indignant oration as it was meant to be heard.