I was speaking recently at Elmhurst College in suburban Chicago on the topic of What Islam Teaches About Protecting the Planet. Towards the end of the discussion I managed to weave in a brief thought on the #MuslimRage phenom with a series of provocative talking points supplied by my better half. I also talked about the presidential debates and offered some thoughts as to how and why Muslims should be heavily involved in the electoral process.
One of the most insightful comments came from a young student named Rabia, she talked about how Romney seemed to be all about a quick-fire, rapid response, or rather a quick fix. Obama, in contrast, by her analysis, was all about the long-term. Then she made an analogy to the human body: "the body does not like quick fixes."
I sat with that, jotted her comments down, and today reflecting on it have this to say: Romney is about "closing the deal". He appeared like an executive in a culture obsessed with domineering and patriarchal leadership, a culture aching for freedom but dying to have someone tell them how to get it. Romney was superb in executing the quick "fix". He was like a drug and gave the country a momentary high - and maybe even got some people addicted. Obama, is like acupuncture, or auyrvedic medicine. Most of the time the body is like: "nothing is happening" when treatments are applied. But part of the wisdom is the prevention over the cure. We should be trying to inoculate over the medicate. Rabia had a good point and also reminded me that we really need to listen to the young people around us more often. They have sharp, on point analysis that is not filtered with our jaded sensibilities. I, for one, am less interested in getting high on a candidate - it is the reason that I was skeptical of Obama-Mania in 2008, and it is the reason that I am skeptical of post-debate Mitt Romney now.