Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I have never been one for nationalism, perhaps this is because I grew up in Toronto, a city that prides itself on residing at the center of its country ignorant to the fact that the rest of the nation feels alienated from and antagonistic towards the cosmopolitan hub. I have been fortunate to live in several locations in Canada and I have seen the separate cultural identities that make up this country. In Canada one has the impression that these identities are not necessarily bound by anything more than arbitrary borders. This was seen in our own national election this past year when it seemed to me that each political party, each leader had only their home region in mind.

I am perhaps a child of globalism, I am certainly a student of pop culture. For both reasons, the inauguration of Barack Obama is of importance to me, as I think it must be for the citizens of the world, not just of the United States. Certainly living in Canada, where every decision made in the US affects us almost immediately and where we are often thought of as only an extension of the nation below us. I don’t think I am alone in feeling more connected to this inauguration of a new President, a new generation than I do to the politics of my own country.

Like so many, I find myself for the first time interested in politics. Seen through the eyes of this new administration it feels like politics might have an interest in me. Of course my cynical mind tells me to be prepared to be disappointed, but for this moment, the first moment in my life, there is enough hope in my heart to put the cynicism aside just for a little while and breathe in the optimism and the hope.


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