T W E N T Y - S I X - L E T T E R S
YES. I am!
[MY PHOTOS OF THE EVENT]
"One voice can change a room, and if one voice can change a room, then it can change a city, and if it can change a city, it can change a state, and if it change a state, it can change a nation, and if it can change a nation, it can change the world. Your voice can change the world."
— BARACK OBAMA
But let it be the right voice. A voice of compassion. A respectful voice.
Today I attended the Obama rally on healthcare reform at UM in College Park, MD and was seated in section 120 facing the President. This was the first political rally I'd ever been to.
Several folks protesting before the healthcare rally were not only spreading lies, but they were hiding behind masks. I'm from the south and that reeks of another such costume. If you have something to say, have the courage to show your face. And speak truthfully. Even inside and during the rally, as Obama spoke, he was interupted by a 'heckler.' Once again, the focus in follow-up articles on Obama would again be: 1/2 nonsense unrelated to the topic at hand, 1/2 what the whole article should be focused on in the first place.
Remember, the reporting about the health care press conference — winds up with a beer in the Rose Garden. Then reporting about the joint session — winds up with Joe Wilson.
On the contrary I stuck around outside after the really, and saw a civil exchange of commentary on the event. I was much more drawn to take and share these pics. There was a renowned doctor from UM, folks from congress, representatives, and many others, known and unknown. I was so intrigued simply watching people fresh off of hearing the President speak. Plus, being a self-employed Art Director, I'm very interested and concerned about the status of healthcare.
When hecklers interrupt, they don't just interrupt that speech, they overshadow the coverage and focus of that event. Then think carefully on how each of us responds to those outbursts? When we write about, talk about, FB about, blog about, photograph or seek out these childish rants from a Joe Wilson snippet, or heckler, or anything from antagonistic Limbaugh-types (even just that small mention makes me ill) we shine a light on that behavior. Even if that's not what we intend to do. Some people even say that these childish outbursts may have more unsettling purposes behind them. WE EACH ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR PERPETUATING THE ATTENTION THEY GET.
Let's keep the focus where it needs to be. Let's use our voices productively. Remember the 'voice' of the last administration's party was... "UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL"?
Interesting. I agree. And, yes, I'm fired up.
©2009 Wendy Hudgins