Monday, January 4, 2010

From Life's Bones

Who Will Deliver Us?

It seemed that when Obama first arrived on the political scene, everyone was quite excited. Here was someone who seemed special. Youthful. Idealistic. Sincere. By election day, huge numbers of the voting population were beyond excited. They were lost in some messianic delusion that someone has emerged to save us from our enemies, and ourselves. They seemed so enamored as to forget that he was about to step into a huge political machine that has been well oiled for decades.

Soon, it became clear. Obama was only a man. A mere human. He is not our political Jesus, after all. And so, we are disappointed. Many are angry and feel cheated, having been so delirious as to think that any one person, whether visionary, or not, was going to walk into the White House and wipe out the corruption and elitism that has governed for so long. There is an old saying, "You can't knock city hall". This holds true even if you are the mayor. City hall is not a building. City hall is the embodiment of corruption, power-grabbing self-servers, and slaves to corporate financing. Messianic mayors need not apply.

The religiosity of hope, so deeply entrenched in the collective mind, still wants a Messiah to emerge. Someone so supernaturally large as to single-handedly undo years of misdeeds characteristic of world politics. A deliverer who will absolve us of our irresponsibility, and magically straighten everything out. Some James Bond, or Spartacus, or Jesus to take charge, and give us back our lives of self-indulgence. The nice thing about messianic hope is is that it requires little personal commitment other than a fervent belief that somebody else will take care of the problem, all I have to do is believe.

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