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Not Everyone's Excited
[Misc] Flowers
I'm going to preface this by saying that this is not intended to be critical of Barack Obama, his campaign, his supporters, or his coming presidency, nor am I trying to attack the people who truly are excited about his election. Regardless of how someone feels about the man himself and his policies, I think most people will agree that the fact that someone who lists his race as African-American not only received the Democratic nomination, but won the election shows that we're at least on the right path in terms of racial issues.

I wasn't crazy about McCain. I will say that I have a serious problem with the fact that a lot of people seemed to be unable to comprehend that it was possible to not support a candidate's without passionately hating that candidate. A lot of the attacks on McCain and Palin left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

Still, the elections over. Our next president will be Barack Obama. Time to look forward.

The first African-American president is newsworthy and if someone is of public interest, that almost always translates to the public seeing every tiny facet of that person's life. So, it's not surprising that we've had a lot of heavy coverage of the Obama family for the past couple of months. It was all very neutral (almost fluffy) stuff, like the Obama's picking out a Christmas tree, what school the girls would go to, etc. That's why I never could figure out why it somehow rubbed me the wrong way.

Then, I saw the January issue of Vogue, which also had heavy Obama coverage, and everything just clicked. I can't find the exact quote (and I've flipped through the magazine a couple of times looking for it), but it basically said "And everyone in America is excited about the new president."


I think most people are glad to get a new president (the latest poll I found put Bush's approval rating at 29%), but that doesn't mean that they're excited about this president. Not everyone thinks that the U.S. is going to reach unprecedented heights under President Obama.

We had a 60-62% voter turnout this year and Obama received about 52.9% of the popular vote. That means that about 33% of the people who were eligible actually voted for Obama. While that doesn't diminish the fact that he won, I think that it shows that not everyone in the country was excited about his election.

The problem with saying that "All of America is excited about Obama's election" is that it ignores the people who didn't support him. It implies that those opinions somehow don't matter. It reflects the attitude of some people that says "Well, clearly anyone who was voting for the right reasons voted for Obama, so who cares if a few people aren't happy?"

It's bad. And it's bad that a lot of people can't seem to see that it's bad. We've had eight years of a significant chunk of the country feeling like they had no voice in the election and attacking the president at every turn. Now most of those people have a candidate they can be excited about. That's good. But is it really in anyone's best interest to intentionally or inadvertently make another chunk of the population feel just as stifled in their excitement about the new election?

I'm not saying that Obama supporters don't have the right to be excited about the future. I'm not saying that they should have to hide that excitement to keep from stepping on someone else's toes. What I'm suggesting is that maybe those supporters (especially those in the media) should at least acknowledge that not everyone was thrilled by the outcome of the election, if only by avoiding sweeping generalizations.

Just a thought...

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I blame comm media. No, seriously.

I never thought how just how much it was tied into politics until a class I had last semester. Saying "everyone" likes him is code for "everyone" should like him, or a less than subtle advertisement for a president. People don't even notice this kind of thing usually... especially not the typical magazine reader. I think you did, and this post is an exemplary sign of that.:)

I voted for Obama, and honestly, I'm not overly confident that things are going to change enough(more specifically, partnerships)... but, that's not to say I didn't feel a little good on election day. And I sure as hell don't care about his personal life. At all. It shouldn't be what people elect a president for, but it surely has impact when the working class votes and election time. Background can drive an entire election(and it pretty much did for Obama, rags to senator).

But even so... Obama is a celebrity president. There's no doubt about that. There's an air about him that has that unexplainable nuance. A rockstar president image. Bush didn't have that... at all. Because of his celebrity image, I think the mass media market is trying to play off of it to make a buck. About the only media I trust anymore after taking classes is a newspaper, and one can barely trust those. Vogue shouldn't be taken seriously, is what I mean to say. They just want to ride the coat tails of a popular image. They cater to a popular audience as well, meaning the majority. Like when magazines like People claim all of America is excited about Angelina Jolie's twins, or Miley Cyrus when I don't give a shit about either of those two things. But a majority of people do, so their target audience is not truly everyone. But they want to push that everyone SHOULD be excited about those things. I hope this is some semblance of understandable. I am bad at explaining things.

Would you hate me if I told you I still do Sarah Palin impressions? >_> It's all in good taste.D:

Media can make a huge difference in elections. I think 24-hour media has made it even worse, because they have more time to fill and therefore tend to show images again and again.

I think you should feel good when the candidate you supported wins. I also think that the people who supported the other candidate should make an effort to be positive about the outcome, even while the winner's supporters should at least be sensitive to the fact that no everyone is happy with the outcome.

I've read about the culture wars and how a lot of the issues have no real compromise, so everyone is always going to be at odds. I think there's some merit to that, but I also wonder how much of it comes from one party being pitted against the other every four years. I mean, there's disagreeing on the issues and then there's believing that anyone who disagrees with you on the issues is horrible and should suffer.

I agree with the celebrity analysis. I mean, he's young, he's attractive, he has a pretty wife who wears nice clothes, and he has two cute kids who are getting a dog in a few months. That's great. I also think that some people tend to feel a certain amount of ownership over celebrities, as though they have the right to get every detail of their lives. I think it's a catch-22: The media is giving people the information they want while simultaneously creating an even greater demand for more information.

And your explanation made perfect sense.

And I think the impressions all depend on how they're done. A lot of people have very amusing quirks that are fun to imitate and that's all good. It's when it turns vicious that it gets bad.

Oh definitely. I don't watch TV much, but I for one know my grand parents are hooked on news TV. People think they're above being influenced by it, but scarily enough it still gets through.

Honestly... I wanted Ron Paul. I really liked what he had going. Obama was my second pick, but by no means am I upset or anything, I just wasn't out rioting on the campus.:P
I don't hate on anyone, but of course there's always idiots willing to try and upset other people. A girl in my comm media theory class, for example, a supposed "bisexual"(more like bi for attention) would constantly be confrontational, and was stubborn to boot. She was all-out for Obama, and would crack on anything otherwise in class. I think it's disrespectful.

Boy do I know it. A reason I don't do all this pride nonsense is because of the hateful attitude I see sometimes towards straight people. I think it's regression, and throwing stones in retaliation to someone throwing stones at you. The issue goes nowhere. I'm all for equal rights, but I'm not going to hate on people different than me when that's my issue in the first place.

I just couldn't get involved in that kind of celebrity fanaticism, but I do know it's alive and well. I don't mind seeing them make idiots of themselves though(especially that despicable Tyra Banks, lol). That's why I watch The Soup and Best Week Ever.XD

Thank goodness. I have all these thoughts in my head, but just making them flow sensibly is still hard sometimes.

Oh, I'm totally awesome. I just do "Hi my name is Sarah Palin and I'm for moose." =p

I think the problem is that even if you don't believe something and know it's clearly ridiculous the first time you hear it, you start to wonder the fiftieth time you hear it.

I would have liked Ron Paul, I think.

From my point of view (and this is based on living in the Bible belt), I think one of the places that things like same-sex marriage fail is that everyone involved wants everything and they won't take degrees. Don't get me wrong, I agree with the side that says it's wrong for people to have to fight for something as basic as having their relationship recognized in the ways that matter. That said, I don't see the reddest of the red states taking such a drastic step. I think that the best strategy is to focus on winning small victories and having the people that opposed those those steps suddenly realize "Hey, we just let people declare same-sex partners on their health insurance and the sky didn't fall. Maybe we should rethink this."

Tyra Banks drives me crazy. It's like she's Oprah Lite.

And who wouldn't be for moose? Though wouldn't she more likely be for moose stew? ;-)


You're so accepting, it blows my mind. It's not an insult, I promise you that. I was very scared to tell you I've had a relationship with a girl for so long, since it's usually a point of conflict. My now-room mate is quite religious, and two years ago it took me a whole week to just say it. I'd start it off and say "I have something kinda important to tell you, I hope you won't think of me any differently" and then become scared and duck out. But nothing changed, and that was fortunate.

I know nothing is ever going to happen that's drastic at least for now. I had a guy friend tell me to go move to a different state to do so, and I kind went "errm, no." It's not too big of a deal yet. I'll worry when I'm out of college about it, though I'm going to do something to lay a claim to my feelings on New Year's in the geekiest fashion available anyways, because it's been gnawing at me recently.

Tyra Banks drives me crazy because she's just plain stupid. I loved the highlight of her telling people to kiss her "fat" ass, erm right.:P

I did not come up with it, but the stew does make more sense. Or better yet, headless turkeys.>->

I didn't take it as one.

I'm religious, too. I was raised Baptist. I went to a Christian school for my primary grades and I went to a Baptist college for undergrad...basically, around here, religion is very much a part of life and it's just something you take for granted. (And I'm always saying I should go to church more often or read the Bible more....I found a great one, called the Apologetic's Bible. But I'm digressing...)

My personal view is that if you're a Christian, you can approach the gay issue two ways: You can try to figure out what the Bible says about how other people should act and then figure out ways of making them act that way or you look at how it says you should act toward other people. Care to guess which one I buy into?

I think one thing that really crystallized it for me was I came across a web page several years ago and it was a religious website that basically said Matthew Shepard was in hell, then it had the date of his death and it said something like "Eternity - xxx day = Eternity."

I just think that if you look at the entirety of the Bible, specifically the parts dealing with Jesus (which is supposed to be the basis is Christianity), that's just not something that someone who claims to be Christian should be doing. (You know, stuff like "Judge not lest ye be judged" and "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." Stuff like that.)

Anyway, that's my long rambling opinion on the subject.

Hopefully, things will progress a bit and you'll have more options. Let me know how your New Year's thing goes.

Tyra Banks just drives me nuts. I remember seeing an episode of the next Top Model that had a heavier Indian girl as one of the contestants and Tyra was all "Yay! Accept yourself. Love yourself. Oh, yeah, by the way, your forehead is too low, so we're going to thread it." (Although, I hate to admit, that was something that really intrigued me and if I knew someone who did a good job, I would totally consider it.)

I've never been able to watch the turkey clip. I just felt too bad for the poor turkeys.

What a relief. I didn't want to come off as condescending or rude.

Oh wow! My room-mate is actually Baptist(but she switched only a few years ago from Catholicism- I don't know how all that works). This is silly, but it was always my belief that as long as someone truly loves their religion, it doesn't matter how many of the traditions you perform. Like, as long as it is a part of your heart, you're fine. I know that sounds stupid, huh?

Is that a rhetorical question?;)

Yeah, that sounds pretty sick. I've personally not had a problem yet, but I keep the relationship pretty low key in public since well, I just don't care for PDAs much. So basically, people just think we're best friends.

You have a very nice rambling opinion. I love your rambles though, since I don't see many people put much thought into subjects anymore.:)

Yeah, no worries. I can wait for a very long time, 2 year, 5 years, 10 years, I'll still be me. I just want to lay my claim now, since I feel the time's come. I kind of took Steph for granted the past couple years, like she's a given... when I haven't even sealed that.:P

Yeah, Steph made me watch a lot of Top Model, and that show makes me laugh so hard because of Tyra. *smacks* You're pretty, I'm sure of it. None of this crazy forehead business.XD

Yeah, it kind of grossed me out and I eat turkey. Just don't show me behind the scenes(as hypocritical as that is, I have a weakness to gore and blood, so).

...turnabout is also fair play. Bush (and the media) trumpeted about his mandate when he got reelected, and those of us who were not only not pleased, but actively upset were mocked and laughed at. I'm not saying Obama supporters should laugh at anyone who voted differently, but the media tends to behave this way and people tend to kind of go along wtih it.

But, to be fair, excited doesn't have to mean happy. I did try not to step on toes, but some of the people who did not support Obama did not extend me the same courtesy.

And given some of the reactions I've seen from those unhappy about Obama's election, I could still categorize them as "excited".

Also, it's Barack. One r.

Edited at 2008-12-27 03:30 am (UTC)

Oops. I knew that. Honestly, I think Firefox has killed my spelling because it shows when I make a mistake so I'm not as careful as I should be.

And you're right, but I think that at some point, we're either going to have to decide that viciously attacking the other side throughout the election and ignoring them if our candidate wins (or complaining if he doesn't) isn't the way to go or else we're eventually going to have such a bitter divide that it literally tears the country apart.

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