Has a pandemic changed America or revealed its heart?

On the same day, it was two very different scenes from Michigan.

The Detroit funeral last week of 5-year-old Skylar Madison Herbert, the young victim of COVID-19, received some notice, though in days that followed, other victims rapidly filled the screen and news pages. Yet it was impossible to forget young Skylar’s beautiful face, soulful eyes and enchanting smile. Thinking that she would never again get to dress up in the Disney princess dresses and her mom’s high heels that family members said she favored, or grow up to fulfill her dream of becoming a pediatric dentist — well, how could your heart not ache?

All that joy, all that potential stopped by a virus.

Why Obama’s Vision of ‘One American Family’ Matters

President Obama rose to the occasion. In a Dallas speech that started with a joke about the first lady’s love of Stevie Wonder and quickly grew solemn, the president included everyone, and asked something of everyone, as well. He acknowledged his own humanity and imperfections and asked those on all sides to do the same.

And he reminded those listening, at least those with the “new heart” and “new spirit” the Lord promised Ezekiel, that he is a leader who cherishes the promise of America. For someone whose faith has been questioned, the president always reaches deep into Scripture for comforting messages.

 

Even Hillary May Not Find Bill Clinton So Charming Anymore

When President Bill Clinton was winning two elections and presiding over economic boom times, his “Slick Willie” nickname highlighted a penchant for wanting to play all sides to stay on top. He was praised for feeling the pain of Americans and rode into a post presidency on a wave of high approval ratings, but the flaws are evident in his latest forays into his wife’s unexpectedly tough presidential primary campaign.

Though Bill Clinton’s telling off protesters in Philadelphia holding signs and interrupting his speech to remind him of the consequences of his 1994 crime bill may actually help his wife win some voters who believe the demonstrators deserve what he dished out, the image of the red-faced former president wagging a finger and dressing down young activists is not a good look. And his “I almost want to apologize” backtracking was condescending and too cute by half.