Presidential Medal of Freedom
One award ceremony that I saw recently was the 2016 Presidential Medal of Freedom. Critics of awards tend to dismiss them as unnecessary fluff for people that are already thanked and seem to miss the point of the hard work, often selfless struggles that expose the true nature and values of the individual concerned and their impact on others.
Inspired to greatness
Watching reactions, hearing snippets of their stories is both moving and inspirational. They affirm what we hope to be and inspire us to greater things… (I can’t believe its just me that feels that way). To my mind one of the great attributes of President Obama was (is) his integrity and his ability to relate to ordinary people in a quite extraordinary manner. All of us probably want recognition for our efforts, few of us are likely to receive this in any form other than our wages, except perhaps from our small group of friends and family.
The contrast could not be greater
Watching the clip of the event I was encouraged and inspired, informed and moved. A humorous, personal speech from Obama along with a clear affection for those that were being recognized. This is the America that most of us wish to see, that is the world leader of inspiration and reflects the source of the special connection that in reality most nations probably feel to some extent. Whilst I recognize it is full of contradictions, (as am I) this is the version of America that today feels rather different and lost under the new President. In time we shall see what sort of President Mr Trump makes, but an inability to understand, empathize or appreciate the difference between facts and lies does not bode well.
I suspect that you don’t spend hours watching reality TV shows, but if you do have about an hour this video is worth seeing, even if you have it on in the background as you work. For more about the 2016 recipients click here.
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