So let’s be clear. I don’t just mean the easy and the obvious kind of gratitude, like giving thanks for how Obama was the first president in history to mention gay marriage in an inauguration speech, or that he (finally) acknowledged climate change as a deadly serious issue, or that he champions women’s rights and immigrant equality like few before him.
It’s not even that he’s the first president since Roosevelt and his National Firearms Act of 1934 to take on the nation’s hissing cult of gun fetishists so directly, the ghosts of 20 massacred school children at his back (not to mention the more than 1100 others who have been gunned down since Sandy Hook), the pinched, blood-red faces of bloated white guys from the NRA all wishing him dead.
So everyone in the NRA wants him dead? Quite a leap there, huh?
It’s an odd fact of our cynical modern context: Obama has been one of the most productive and successful first-term presidents in history. But it goes largely unnoticed, overshadowed by relentless economic gloom and an acidic GOP filled such hatred for the president they’d rather the nation – their own constituents included – get cancer than Obama succeed. Don’t believe it? You haven’t been paying attention.
Wait, what? The GOP wants their constituents to get cancer? WTF?
Which leads us straight to perhaps the largest gratitude offering of all. It is a kind of stunned, dizzy appreciation for the now-permanent truism the Obama era hath ushered in, once and for all and never to be repealed. Do you know it?
It goes thusly: When all the old, clenched white males are, en masse, apoplectic, when all the clammy, bloated representatives of the Old Guard could not be more full of hate and resentment for the polyphonic, multicolored direction of the nation, when it is very possible the seeds of calmly chaotic diversity and deep intelligence Obama has planted will bear fruit for decades to come, this is how you know. This is the kind of evolution you want.
Deep intelligence? OK, I get it, this is satire, right?