March 8, 2015
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Obama at Selma (must-read: Fallows’ on “Finally I Hear a Politician Explain My Country Just the Way I Understand It”)

That’s what America is. Not stock photos or airbrushed history, or feeble attempts to define some of us as more American than others. We respect the past, but we don’t pine for the past. We don’t fear the future; we grab for it. America is not some fragile thing. We are large, in the words of Whitman, containing multitudes. We are boisterous and diverse and full of energy, perpetually young in spirit. That’s why someone like John Lewis at the ripe old age of 25 could lead a mighty march.

Oh my: “a mighty march.” We all know who that sounds like.

The American instinct that led these young men and women to pick up the torch and cross this bridge, that’s the same instinct that moved patriots to choose revolution over tyranny. It’s the same instinct that drew immigrants from across oceans and the Rio Grande; the same instinct that led women to reach for the ballot, workers to organize against an unjust status quo; the same instinct that led us to plant a flag at Iwo Jima and on the surface of the Moon

Men and women, torch and bridge, revolution and tyranny, ocean and river, women and labor, the world war and the moon: we know who that sounds like. That’s Lincoln. But the contraction — the contraction is purest Reagan: even now, Obama reaches out for those with ears to hear.

And what Republican today would dare mention that river?

The speech is filled with presidential echoes.

When it feels the road is too hard, when the torch we’ve been passed feels too heavy, we will remember these early travelers, and draw strength from their example.

Hello, Jack.

And once more, we close at the very beginning:

We honor those who walked so we could run.  We must run so our children soar.  And we will not grow weary.  For we believe in the power of an awesome God, and we believe in this country’s sacred promise.

We worship an awesome God in the blue states….