Brad Keselowski, the defending Sprint Cup champion, had a scheduled visit to the White House on Tuesday, April 16th.
It became a case of going forward with “business as usual” as the entire country was focused on, and rebounding from, a cowardly act of violence in Boston the day before. Some might question the follow through with the visit as the President could certainly have other things to do on such a day than talk about NASCAR and stand with some race car driver next to the car boldly displaying a beer logo.
However, as President Obama said;
“We are here today to celebrate a great American sport. Obviously we’ve had this scheduled for some time, and events have a way of intervening. Obviously, our minds right now are with our fellow Americans and the fans that came from all over the world that went yesterday to run and cheer on another great American sporting event, the Boston Marathon.”
The event was obviously clouded with thoughts and concerns for those in Boston as he continued;
“I know the entire NASCAR family shares with me a great sense of loss for the victims, and we pray for their loved ones. And rest assured… We’re going to uncover whoever was responsible for yesterday’s cowardly act, find out why they did it, and they will be brought to justice. But one of the things I firmly believe in is that America is strong, and we are resilient, and we don’t let such cowardly acts get in the way of our lives.”
It is that last statement that rings true so often in America. Some events set the political machine into high gear with ideas or plans to alter some bit of law or make changes to some policy. However, Americans across the country still grab on to life and make their own steps to move on and get past the “event”. It is our way of making it known that these acts intended to derail us will not succeed in that goal.
We grumble about this or that. We complain about this or that. Yet everyone stops and looks and listens and feels when something like this happens. For a moment, we are reminded we are all together in one land. We are united in the feeling of horror for what we see and the sense of anger and disgust over who could do such a thing.
However, we become united. Even if it is for this brief moment. The person or persons who would do these type of things make the mistake in believing we are driven apart yet they fail miserably as we pull together.
The NASCAR visit to the White House demonstrates this. There is much to be said about the politics of the current D.C. Administration and a vast majority of NASCAR fans. Let us leave it at the votes just don’t match very often…
However, for a brief moment, as America did, these often conflicting ideals were put aside as the President of the United States and the Sprint Cup Champion talked for a bit about speed, horsepower and racing.