Pay heed, this presidency is not about him; it’s about us

President-elect Obama will probably give a brilliant, inspiring Inaugural address. The whole country, the whole world, will be watching him. It is bound to be a homerun, possibly a grand slam.

Still, the media is too focused on Mr. Obama and not focused sufficiently on the people who elected him and on the people he will serve whether they voted for him or not.

The president-elect is probably one of the few people in the country who understands this. Perhaps his most illuminating remark throughout the campaign was “This election is about you, not me.”

Other people have said this line before, but when Mr. Obama said it throughout the campaign it carried a different meaning. It is not that the line had no meaning when others said it; it is that the line fits him perfectly, the way that a mountain range wraps around a lake.

He is now the largest political figure on Earth, but he is humble enough to know that his message about national unity is about the American people and what we have been saying, implicitly and explicitly, that we need.

The president-elect is a graceful man, someone who can stand before a million people clapping and screaming for him and not feel full of himself. That is a remarkable quality, one you do not find in most athletes, rock stars and politicians.

The man who used the Internet to transform the relationship between himself and the American people is the man who knows that, though lead he must, it is the American people who must summon forth from themselves a quality of devotion that will give birth to a new spirit of American unity and indeed world unity.

As we wait to hear this great man address us and the world, let us also look within ourselves to ask what he meant all of those months he said that this election was about us and not him.

Potomac, Md.

Expect mistakes amid the hope

From Bob Montañez

There is something new in the air, something that has been absent for eight lengthy years and that is very much needed in the people’s daily struggles.

This something has led the American people to rise and stand beside a man who reminds us that anything is possible. He has shown us that a pluralistic citizenry can still come together as one and that it is all right to be different. He has done it by reawaking and challenging our hearts and minds.

He did it in his unique way — with hope.

Everybody knows that he will not be able to fix the welter of failures he has inherited. For sure, he will make mistakes.

But, if he stumbles and falls, we know he does so while working diligently for the best and most honorable reasons. It will never be because he lacks hope.

Odessa, Texas