Colin Powell crossed party lines to endorse Barack Obama, calling him a "transformational figure." Perhaps he sensed what only a poet could say, "What our country desperately needs is a leader who loves us . . .
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell has endorsed Democrat Barack Obama for president, describing him as a "transformational figure."
In an interview Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press, Colin Power described Barack Obama as "better suited to handle the nation's economic problems as well as help improve it's standing in the world."
He went on to say that he does not believe Palin is ready to take over as president, if necessary. and he was critical of the negative tone of McCain's campaign, as well as his choice of Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin, as his running mate.
Already the pundits are talking about the impact of Powell's endorsement and what effect it will have on the presidential race. Powell has an 82% approval rating, which may reflect the potential influence of his endorsement.
But what he did not say, that may have been encapsulated in the words "transformational figure," was directly spoken by Alice Walker when she wrote, "What our country desperately needs is a leader who loves us."
Alice Walker described how Fidel Castro, at a time of crisis, shared his limitations and pain with his people.
It was during the emergency years, the "special period" when Cuba's relationship with the Soviet Union had collapsed and there was little gas or oil or fertiliser; people were struggling to find enough to eat. It was perhaps Cuba's nadir, as a small Caribbean island nation considered a dangerous threat by its nearest neighbour, the United States - which, during this period, tightened its embargo. Fidel, tall, haggard, his clothes hanging more loosely than usual from his gaunt frame, walked soberly along, surrounded by thousands of likewise downhearted, fearful people: he, like them, waving a tiny red, white and blue Cuban flag.
However poor the Cubans might be, I realised, they cared about each other and they had a leader who loved them. A leader who loved them. Imagine. A leader not afraid to be out in the streets with them, a leader not ashamed to show himself as troubled and humbled as they were. A leader who would not leave them to wonder and worry alone, but would stand with them, walk with them, celebrate with them -
This is what I want for our country, more than anything. I want a leader who can love us.
Let the people say, Amen.