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US Politics

Rick’s Letter to Wisconsin

A Telling Thoughts Comment:

I found this gem of a short letter titled – “Yard Signs .. of the times”, on the Wisconsin for Obama Group Site today, this first day of August. It is such a marvelous real life story I just had to spread it wider as a way of thanking the author Rick Eilders. I found it to be very insightful and quite wonderful.

Hope you enjoy it,

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From: Rick Eilders re: Yard Signs .. of the times
To: the Wisconsin for Obama Group
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On that hot July afternoon it made me smile to think back to the record snowfall of last winter

I wanted to share an observation that I made last weekend.

Every Friday I make the same trip from my house to the local pharmacy, it is a trip I make weekly because like millions of Americans I do not have health insurance and need to pay for a very expensive prescription out of pocket and I can only afford to get a weeks? worth at a time.

It is a trip that takes me through a very nice but very middle class residential area of modest homes, like most in this country it is a neighborhood where virtually every family relies on two incomes just to get by. If Norman Rockwell were painting in the 21st century he might very well paint the story of a neighborhood much like this.

But I noticed something different on this particular trip. Today I saw no fewer than seven new Obama signs in the yards along my way. There they were, shiny and new, standing proudly out in front of these modest homes, there amongst the kids bikes in the yard and the basketball hoops and the crab grass.

It struck me how they looked in such stark contrast to the Obama sign in my own yard which has grown tattered and rusted since I had first planted it in a four foot snow bank on a January night just few weeks before the Wisconsin primary.

On that hot July afternoon it made me smile to think back to the record snowfall of last winter and how the seemingly daily assault from the snow plows made it almost a nightly ritual to dig out that increasingly battered sign and place it atop the ever higher bank of snow. It seemed like a sure sign of spring when in March I was finally able to get the thin metal posts into still slightly frozen earth. Finally I began another ritual where I pull it up weekly as I mow the lawn and then replant it when I am finished.

But I also realized something much more important.  The message was getting out. Even in the heat of July when the public’s? attention was supposedly tuned to summer vacations and only political junkies like me were surfing the internet nightly for the latest polls and the stories of the day. There were people who were listening to what Barack and the campaign has been saying. There were people who were looking at the choices before us as a nation and choosing to accept hope over fear.

They were choosing to believe that America can again stand proudly among the nations of the world as a symbol of freedom. They are choosing to believe that together we can make a great country even better; not by embracing the politics of the past, the politics of separation, but by choosing to believe that America?s best days are still ahead of us if we work together.

I know that the election is still months away, that there is much work to be done. There will be calls to be made and doors to be knocked on. In the mean time the Republicans seem to be taking the familiar path of Bush and Rove. The old politics of fear and division, again working to point out the things that make us different rather than all the great things that we share as Americans.

But on that sunny July day I think that I may have been given another type of sign, a sign of change and a future of hope.  I just wanted to share it with all of you because I know that together we can make this dream come true.

Rick
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Discussion

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  1. “The old politics of fear and division, again working to point out the things that make us different rather than all the great things that we share as Americans.”
    That is so true. Obama seems to be a man of integrity and has thus far not stooped to lower level games of the Republican nominee. I, too, hope (there’s that word again) that Obama will be the change this country needs to make us greater than we have been in the last decade. We need a leader that can inspire people. I have been inspired and that is why I am here.
    Be inspired! Great letter, Rick!
    Kairee

    Posted by Kairee | August 2, 2008, 4:52 am