“You know something?
I’m thankful to be in this country. There are many freedoms and opportunities here that can’t be enjoyed in many places around the world. I’m especially thankful for the principles of democracy and freedom of speech. Most of all, I am profoundly thankful for friends who challenge me in love, spirit, and truth. Whether we share the same party or political ideas, religious/ faith beliefs, ethnicity, class, or sexuality, they know that our common interests are greater than our ideological differences.
We fundamentally want the same things, but may have a different vision for getting there. Ultimately, my true friends know that my heart is good. They hold me to a higher standard, yet still respect my freedom of thought as an important tenet of being an individual, and being an American.”
I shared the above post with “friends” on my personal Facebook account today, and upon receiving initial feedback, I felt led to share it here. I am cautious about my use of the word “friends” because I know that this descriptor doesn’t always capture the magnitude of my relationships on Facebook; nonetheless, many of us connect in this way as a result of several, separate connections and networks that ultimately bring us together. This fact alone should present an opportunity to further open up and get to know each other better.
Without a doubt, there is incredible energy, both positive and negative, about Barack Obama’s reelection to office. I will be the first to admit that in all of my excitement and running comments during the debates and then again while the results trickled in, I never once thought that any of what I said could be interpreted as anything other than excitement for my candidate of choice. I would be naïve, however, to ignore the fact that this nation is divided, though by all accounts, Obama’s win was a decisive one. Still, I am hopeful about our country’s ability to galvanize behind our common experiences and heart convictions.
I also hope that, if nothing more, this opener sparks a conversation that gets us to a more communal space where diversity of thought and experience is encouraged, valued, and respected.
Welcome to the table!
**Also, you can still check out PBS’ “Race 2012: A Conversation of Race & Politics in America” online.**