Responsibility. This was the key word two years ago when Obama was inaugurated as our 44th president. I remember, of course, because we took time out from school to listen to his historic speech, and you never forget the things that get you out of class.
It wasn’t just a reference to his own responsibility, though, or the responsibility bestowed on the hands of the Democrats, but our collective responsibility as Americans to work together to make this country feel O.K. about itself again. Two years later? We haven’t seen immediate, spectacular results, and as a result, voters panicked. I can’t say I was surprised by the G.O.P’s resurgence, but I was still disappointed with the lack of faith from the same voters that put Obama in office. The unrealistic expectations we continue to have of the government to bail us out are especially frustrating—we persist in disregarding the reality that we are all responsible. In any case, we took the risk in believing in Obama’s ambitious, transformative vision—but after this election could be quickly morphed into what could have been. Two years is not nearly long enough to see the full realization of policies implemented in this administration.
Now, it’s likely that if the economy continues to decline, the Republicans will just keep pointing fingers at the Democrats. And if the situation improves? Well then, of course, all credit due to the comeback kids.
Emily Wang is a first-year in the College majoring in English.