The Common Good

Obama's Call to Rebuild

This wasn't really a budget speech, or even a State of the Union. It was a call to rebuild a country -- from its infrastructure, to its economy, to its values. Last night, Barack Obama called a new generation to a new American future. And from the "twittering" and Facebook status updates I am aware of going on last night, the new generation stayed up late to watch and got the speech they wanted-a vision for the new America they hope to raise their children in.

There hasn't been as much political vision or ambition in the chamber of the House of Representatives for decades as there was last night. It wasn't just a list of little ideas or a recitation of familiar symbols; it was a substantial diagnosis of America's crisis and the bold promise to find the solutions necessary. If the inaugural speech disappointed some for being more sobering than visionary, the call to action they were waiting for came last night.

The new president boldly declared that it is time to meet the big challenges. After telling Americans for the last month what we were up against, he said that America can and will rise to meet the challenge.

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