I donated to the campaign. I followed every primary with bated breath, and muttered my prayers to the political gods while proselytizing the miracle of my new prophet. I got a car magnet, I bought a t-shirt; a pin and bumper sticker are on their way to my campus mailbox. Then the media and right wing questioning began: what is he? A rock star, or the next president? Bono or Britney? The naysayers used his popularity among young people against him. Who had ever heard of political posters in college dorm rooms? Bumper stickers on the back of your high school neighbor's Jetta? Guess what those "Jesus is my homeboy" t-shirts were replaced with at Urban Outfitters? A smiling Obama under his own cutesy sayings like "Obama for yo Mama."
I must admit, I questioned this myself. After all, would I have ever bought a t-shirt with Al Gore's face on it? Was this all he was, the newest pop culture fad? I questioned my newfound faith - was it all only a phase, like the time I thought I was Baptist in junior high? But my inner dogmatic struggle only helped cement my beliefs as I followed politics more closely than ever before. Obama's mere presence, knowledge and enthusiasm in the political realm inspired my own desire to understand what exactly had gone wrong, what exactly he could do to remedy the mess we'd made.
Then I began to realize I wasn't the only one trying to buy a WWOD bracelet and spending my weekends scouring CNN.com. The rock star-type love for Obama wasn't just because he was pretty and in the media. Others too, had seen him as a shining light, heard that mythical voice boom out over the mountaintops; people were wearing the t-shirt because they would rather wear something representing a politician than a pop star. People everywhere, young and old, were caring again. So what's the problem here?
I've officially been saved, and soon, whether they like it or not, the rest of the country will be too. I will follow him, all the way to the White House, and I'll be standing there in our nation's capital in January 2009, when Barack Obama is inaugurated as the 44th president of the United States of America. In the name of Obama, Amen.
Ht: Jim Geraghty