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President Clinton’s Ubuntu Vision – We’re All in this Together

For those of you who are new to my blog, or don’t have the sense to read every post…please read this blog about the concept of ubuntu before continuing.

Now that you’ve been introduced to this concept.  I want to talk a little about ubunutu philosophy outlined in the speech by President Bill Clinton last night at the Democratic National Convention.  Okay, so he didn’t actually talk about ubuntu, but some of the ideas he mentioned were in the realm of the ubuntu concept.  Think about these two quotes:

“A person is a person through other persons.” – Desmond Tutu

“we believe that ‘We’re all in this together’ is a far better philosophy than ‘You’re on your own.'” – President Clinton

Can you see how this philosophy could easily be translated into the ubuntu concept?  The idea that we each don’t only worry about ourselves and let everyone else be damned, but we are here to help each other, and we improve by giving each other a hand.  Here are some more quotes from the speech that I thought fit into the same concept:

“When times are tough and people are frustrated and angry and hurting and uncertain, the politics of constant conflict may be good, but what is good politics does not necessarily work in the real world. What works in the real world is cooperation.”

“President Obama’s approach embodies the values, the ideas, and the direction America has to take to build a 21st-century version of the American dream, a nation of shared opportunities, shared responsibilities, shared prosperity, a shared sense of community.”

Say what you want, but I believe the United States is a nation founded on the idea of ubuntu.  Maybe not in so many words, but in the spirit of what our founding fathers created.  We have had to struggle and fight to live up to that spirit.  We have had to abolish slavery, fight for women’s rights, fight for civil rights, and we still fight to live up to the spirit of ubuntu today.  Sometimes the fight is against our own prejudice.  Sometimes it’s a struggle with our greed.  Sometimes it’s a struggle to include those who believe and live differently than we do – even in so innocent an area as who they love.  Through all of this struggle, we will prevail.  As President Clinton said:

“For more than 200 years, through every crisis, we’ve always come back. People have predicted our demise ever since George Washington was criticized for being a mediocre surveyor with a bad set of wooden, false teeth. And so far every single person that’s bet against America has lost money, because we always come back.  We’ve come through every fire a little stronger and a little better. And we do it because, in the end, we decide to champion the cause for which our founders pledged their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honor, the cause of forming a more perfect union.”



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