Where we are and where we will be

Where we are and where we will be
The idea of Edinburgh is a combination of place, soul and symbolic leadership of a nation

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

A great day for us all

Great swathes have already been written and will be written about Barak Obama's inauguration. It is an astonishing moment for the world that a man whose father would not have been served in restaurants 60 years ago in Washington because of the colour of his skin was sworn in as president of that same nation.

I offer simply this thought. What struck me about President Obama's speech was that it was rooted in values and offered something deeply spiritual to a hurting nation (and world). It said simply, times are tough and he and the nation he now leads need to dig deep into their souls as they struggle to find solutions to their challenges, domestic and international. He said;
"in the words of scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness".

and; "This is the source of our confidence - the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny".
I don't pick this out to make a theological or a "pro-God" point. Nor do I suggest that some-one without faith in a divinity couldn't do the job. This is not a man who says "God told me what to do because he's on my side but instead asks what do I need to do to be on God's side".

I do think that it is interesting that what met the need of a broken nation was a language that has been sometimes despised in political circles on both sides of the language. I know that he will need to find policies that match those words but at least we will know what drive the man, what he depends on and why he might have the stamina to make it through the pain that he faces. Faith itself will not bring the hard political answers he needs. But knowing what he believes to be true about the nature of world is a good starting point.

2 comments:

Hee said...

Indeed it was; but closer to home, the council have triumphantly announced the outcome of their 'rigourous' procurement strategy for homelessness services. This is a tragic day for the most vulnerable adults in Edinburgh- 1000 hours less support per week will now be available for adults with multiple needs, and of the 1400 hours per week left available, this will be provided by less skilled, more poorly paid staff than before.
This is not the way to heal communities and promote inclusion: there will be real, significant harm done as a direct result of the process undertaken by CEC and the poor decisions made. I hope that you find the time to blog some more about this Ewan; the problems are not going to go away.

Ewan said...

Hee, you are so very right. Something very serious has happened here and I am doing all I can to fund out what. I ahve been asking questions and putting down motions for 6 months now on procurement but to little avail but I am getting closer to the truth and it is not a pleasant sight. I shall return to this.

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