At turns, both humble and confident, sober and humorous, President Barack Obama walked out to an adoring crowd at the Democratic National Convention waiting with baited breath to hear him reassure them that everything would be okay.
They needed to hear from him that not only did he believe in America’s possibility, but that he believed in himself. They needed to know that having hope and expecting change does not make them naive or ill-informed, but rather is a display of faith in our president that has been tested, but one that can not be allowed to falter in the face of cynicism and suppression.
And he did not disappoint. Here’s an excerpt, followed by video of the entire, stirring speech:
The first time I addressed this convention in 2004, I was a younger man; a Senate candidate from Illinois who spoke about hope – not blind optimism or wishful thinking, but hope in the face of difficulty; hope in the face of uncertainty; that dogged faith in the future which has pushed this nation forward, even when the odds are great; even when the road is long.
Eight years later, that hope has been tested – by the cost of war; by one of the worst economic crises in history; and by political gridlock that’s left us wondering whether it’s still possible to tackle the challenges of our time.