Today is a new day of the next four years of an Obama presidency. This is a day that many people have waited for, and a day that others have dreaded. This is not a piece about Obama's achievements over the past four years, nor is it about the long journey that preceded this day. This is not about the hard fought campaign, nor the resistance of Republican congressmen to block the president's attempt at progress.
No, this is piece is about the next four years. This is about a new era in America's history. An era that will make us, break us, or take us toward either of the aforementioned destinies. This is a different year, a different term; but this is a term with similar issues that must be talked about in more depth.
Just because Obama has been reelected and Democrats have gotten more powerful in numbers in Congress, it does not mean that times will be much easier nor does it mean that the political war is won. Our political battle field is still laid out and people are still fighting the battle for ideology. This had been a war that has been fought for the past four years and it is time for Mr. Obama to be the mediator. On issues such as immigration, gun control, and LGBT rights, Mr. Obama must not only stand for what he feels is correct, ethical and fair; he must also stand for the improvement of society. And if we continue to be in gridlock, Americans will continue to suffer.
Mr. Obama must stop planning and start doing, and move his agenda through forcefully and convincingly. The time for games is over. The time for progress is now. The president must stand up to his opponents and allies in Congress and warn them that if they do not do their jobs as policymakers and adults, they will be fired by the American people. He must warn Republicans that the best cards are not on their side and convince them that if they do not reform their platform concerning social issues and revise their ideology so that it includes all Americans and not their wealthy masters, they only things that will remember their history are the pages of a high school history book. He must tell both sides of the aisle that they need to not only respect his presidency, but to also start promoting policies that have been proven to work for Americans and not just the fortunate few.
We need to start pushing for the issues of today. We need to fix our broken immigration system. Same-sex marriage can no longer be a stigma established by the status quo. History has shown that prosperity does not come with the increased wealth of the few, but the support from the whole. This means that we need to reward those "Made in America" and punish those who are "Made in China." We need to show the world that we have learned from our past diplomatic mistakes and will take steps to restore our tattered relationship with other countries. We must learn to challenge the issues dead-on and not continue to kick the can down the road until the moment before it is too late. We must be fiscally responsible and pay our bills, and we must do that not using ideology, but using a philosophy that has been proven to work.
The previous two paragraphs serve something of a New Year's resolution, but they are resolutions that politicians and civilians must heed in order to improve our standing in the world and within our borders.
Hopefully with this new term, President Barack Hussein Obama and his policies will truly be the change we needed after a disastrous predecessor.
After he takes his oath of office on the Capitol steps, Americans will be crossing their fingers. I sincerely hope that the change that he promised and brought about will continue to come because America truly needs it.