It was seven o'clock in the morning on Tuesday. The television and radio silenced. Soft music played as I spent the day in quiet reflection because I knew the rest of the week will bring the start of the 2012 presidential campaign.
We will not be faced with any television ads but the cell phones will be ringing and the fund raising will start.
Both candidates used two words throughout this 2008 campaign — hope and change.
The dictionary defines hope as cherishing a desire with anticipation or expecting with confidence. And change is defined as making different, replacing with another, or transforming or altering.
These are great words and I have great hope for a change. The outcome of this race is not the concern now. I am desperately hoping for a change in the way our government and the men and women running it will behave.
I hope we can let go of the disparagement the media, politicians, and the citizenry have for President Bush. Just like presidents before him, time will paint the true picture of the last eight years. We have lived through some great presidents and some awful ones. The country manages to survive in spite of the actions of the president.
I hope we can work together to solve the many serious issues that face this country. Let us forget that we are either donkeys or elephants and remember we are Americans and we need to work together in harmony and peace.
I hope we can take this time of economic decline to put our priorities in perspective. To realize we do not need things to live happy lives. We should turn to our neighbors and our communities to share what we have.
I hope we can be one country with liberty and justice for all.
Could we change the way we select a president? These past two years have been fraught with dreadful accounts of the nomination process. I cannot believe that we can find only two major candidates to run for president, nor can I believe that the $5.3-billion spent on this campaign is the best use of those dollars. I can name a dozen people who could do a great job as president. The system we have in place discourages high-quality citizens from applying.
Could we change the terms of the president and legislators? One six-year term for the president and reasonable term limits for senators and representatives.
Could we change the way we perceive the president? Our founding fathers did not want the president to be a king. We act as if the president is the be all and end all with enormous power. If all the promises the candidates made could be mandated, we would be living in paradise. There would be no hunger, everyone would get medical treatment, our country would be safe and all with no taxes. We need to be realistic about how much a president can actually do.
Hope and change are wonderful words. I am looking forward to not hearing them so often.
Mary Partington lives in New Port Richey.