This morning my attention was directed to the following article at Salon Magazine:
“Obama vs. House GOP: Best TV ever. The president smoothly mocks House Republicans, in an entertaining U.S. take on the prime minister’s question time.”
If I could kick a website in the ding ding my foot would already be behind my back and swinging forward with all the might I could muster, toe pointed forward, poised for a sure shot.
Salon (and they’re not the only ones) ought to be ashamed for stating such a smug opinion on yesterday’s meeting between the Whitehouse and the House of Representatives. Yesterday we witnessed a rare event that should be celebrated with a fervent demand for an encore and another and another. It should not be treated like a simple media event wherein tallies are made and a victor is announced. The entire point of the session was to but an end to the daily soundbyte sniper hunt and talk candidly without the interruption of pundits who are paid to pour gasoline on a tire fire.
It’s easy for all of us to cynical (including the media) about what was said yesterday but we can’t expect politicians to change overnight. We have had such a vicious decade of division that is not going to simply go away. Like all wounds, this will take time to heal and it is on us to stop running back to our ideological bunkers to dissect what was said into triumphant taking points.
Every voter in this union should take some time this weekend to thank their representatives for participating in yesterdays Q&A and encourage them to conduct more open sessions until it becomes a routine of our political culture, a structural thread in our evolving democracy. Write to the President and write to your members of the House. Meanwhile, we should harass and snub media outlets who seek to continue opening the divide between neighbors because civil discourse would likely mean lower ratings with declining advertising revenue.
Yesterday’s open door talk wasn’t perfect but it was a start. Lets go team go.