With the likely passage of national health care reform by Congress, President Obama’s address to the nation defining his vision of reform obviated that this president will make history in a life-altering and life-affirming way. I believe the enactment of his health initiative proposals is crucial in maintaining the integrity of our nation and the integrity of us, as a people.

Unlike any president of the last 50 years, President Obama is a formidable presence. He possesses a brilliance of vision, courage and intellect, enabling him to promote clearly the principles that define the United States, as well as those principles that define compassionate, substantive and purposeful human behavior.

At the same time, one cannot help but be saddened and embarrassed having to witness the self-inflicted demise of the Republican Party. It was once truly grand, filled with people of meaningful vision and purpose. However, since the election of the banal, hebetudinous and jingoistic Ronald Regan, Republicans have become committed to a recalcitrance vis-a-vis the reality of progress that (inflicts and) defines their purpose of being. Shame on them. I can only wonder what will replace them. (And they will be replaced!)

I, too, can’t help but think about presidents Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt – two of the best of our best, reflecting on their character, their sense of service and morality, and their willingness to effect purposeful and positive change. And, in so doing, I dare say that if alive today, without doubt, I believe each would be compelled to membership in the Democratic Party.

Indeed, only time will tell where we, the American people, will allow President Obama’s leadership to take us. But in the mean time, I can say that for the first time since Jan. 19, 2001, I feel safe, I am proud of my government leaders, and I have renewed hope that our country’s children have regained a chance to inherit a healthy, happy and productive future.

I knew when I voted for him that Mr. Obama was one of those people born to greatness – born to leadership. I love and respect him with all my being and believe that he has the very best interests of our country and of all people at heart. We are all so very lucky to have him lead us.

Daniel Salotti
Oak Park

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