It is late afternoon, October 29. I'm sitting at my house waiting on Obama. I could run to the airport in less than five minutes. OK, I should be able to run to the airport in less than five minutes, but today, it might take ten. Either way, it is close. But I'm torn. If I sit here too long, I fear that I may get stuck. There are only two ways out of my house and there is a chance that when the President arrives they will both be closed.
I want to walk out to the street and take a chance on seeing the motorcade, but am I really that starstruck that I would take pride in saying "I saw a limo, I think the man was in it?" I couldn't imagine having to live so separated from reality. That highways and airports would close for my arrival. That my only interactions with people who aren't tightly controlled or mightily important would come through a tinted window. Why must leaders be so separate from their people?
A friend of mine takes a small measure of pride in pointing out Obama to a group of high school students dining in Union Station a number of years ago. He pointed and said "that man is going to be President." Obama was quite accessible. Is he that different today?
It is a shame that we take the humanity away from our leaders, celebrities, and others who keep a high profile. We turn men and women into figures and lose all touch with the reality of who they are. We build a wall because we can't accept them as our equals, we insist on making them better, or expecting so much out of them. It is obvious when it is a President whom I can only view from a distance. But, where does it start-- how much do I do this to teachers, preachers, police and local politicians, could this be where the walls of division begin?