We are constantly bombarded with a 24-hour news cycle which presents an all too often unflattering look at the world or even our own communities at times. For the vast majority of us we strive to make the best of what can be, sometimes the worst of situations.
This evening I chose to listen to the President of the United States present his State of the Union Address. I’ll be honest, I was somewhat reluctant to do that given the political winds which blow through our national and local debates today. I often describe the field of political discourse today as being similar to a “blood sport” of sorts that isn’t worthy of the people of this nation.
I was somewhat pleasantly surprised however in the level of humanity and grace with which President Trump delivered his message to the nation.
His speech was not a hard hitting or bombastic attack against his political rivals. Instead it was given by a man who spoke about his vision of the greatness of our nation, all of which is found in the quality of its people.
I’ve often been told that men and women must on many occasions “grow into” their roles in life. I’ve personally witnessed this when an individual is called upon to tackle great personal challenges such as providing the necessary care for a loved one who has fallen deathly ill.
You might say our nation is at a pivotal time in its life, leaving some to wonder openly what its future might be. However, last evening President Trump called upon a vision of the America which he and I both believe to be still firmly viable.
We are a nation of individuals who relish the idea of rising to challenges; A people that don’t see the impossibility of a task, but instead look for the possibilities in life… and push the envelope to accomplish them.
Take for an example the founding of our nation and the fact that the 56 men by signing the Declaration of Independence risked everything in their lives to move forward to do what many saw as the impossible. By signing that document in 1776 those brave men actually signed their death warrants and many would lose all their possessions, and some their lives.
President Trump would call upon living and breathing examples within the audience as proof of the fact that the America he still believes in does exist and heroes still live amongst us.
His was not a partisan address that evening, but instead he called upon both sides to put away their differences and work to find compromises for many of the challenges facing the nation today. He seemed a man somewhat transformed from his one year in office and finally coming to realize the enormity of the tasks before him, while committing himself 100% to finding those solutions.
From the exploits of firefighters on the fire lines in California, to that of brave soldiers on the front lines of Afghanistan, the examples of great American heroics continued to roll off of Trump’s tongue.
He would also speak to a resurgence of the ever expanding American economy and the uplifting of the hopes and aspirations of those who would take advantage of those greatly improving numbers to open businesses, buy homes and take advantage of educational opportunities.
He would also send a loud and clear message to friends and foes alike; that we would recognize and assist our friends, but not waste our resources on those that did not reciprocate as allies and friends.
Most of all, he would focus on the wonder of the miracle of the America he believes in. An America that does indeed stand at the threshold of a resurgence, while giving its citizens true hope for the future should they choose to move forward into the light of opportunity.
It was a message that you might have expected to have heard from Ronald Reagan, not the man who had become known more for his bombastic tweets, rather than this comforting tone from a brash New York business man who now sits at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
It was refreshing and worth the time to listen.
Steve Stefanides, well-known by his nickname “Stef,” is an experienced awardwinning reporter of local civic and public interest news. Stef’s More Straight Talk column (and its predecessor, Straight Talk), on a variety of subjects, is a favorite of readers who trust him to bring them the facts. A Marco Island resident, Stef contributes to the community in many ways, having served on a number of city committees, charitable groups, boards and local organizations. Contact him by email at Stef@coastalbreezenews.com