All the world is in love with Susan Boyle. She didn’t just belt out I Dreamed a Dream, she proved that dreamers still can turn cynics around and bring the world to its feet cheering.
I am convinced that the real problem with the economic turmoil we are in now is not Wall Street and it is not the housing market. Its root cause is not even greed, though that has played a big part. Greed has been around a long time and we have overcome it before.
The real culprit is cynicism. There is more cynicism than ever and precious few dreamers left to combat it.
But Scotland gave us one.
Susan turned the cynics to believers in seconds, right before our eyes. It is a beautiful thing to behold. That is why we can’t stop watching it.
Note: click this link to see the video or click twice on the image – the play arrow below will not play directly.
Remember the 1980 US Hockey team in the Olympics? Times were bad. After three assassinations, years of riots, Watergate, Vietnam ending in retreat, we were then faced with oil crises, terrorism and Iran imprisoning 52 US diplomats for 444 days while the U.S. seemed totally inept. To add to it all, the USSR invaded Afghanistan and seemed determined to push the world to the brink of war by starting a trail of conquest for territory. The cynics were all over the place.
Then along came a batch of dreamers – the US Hockey team, a bunch of gutsy college kids going up against the invincible Soviet Olympic team. The USSR team, staffed mostly by the Red army “amateurs” (pros were not allowed in the Olympics in those days), could handily beat any professional hockey team in the world on most days. But not during the days of the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid.
How I remember sitting up in the middle of the night (I lived in Germany at the time), watching that incredible match – and watching the impossible happen. The US kids laid their hearts on the ice and knocked the USSR out of the games and won the gold medal. I’ll never, ever, forget that feeling. Spunky dreamers overcame the cynics and the unbelievers. Hope was reborn and people began to believe again.
That same year another dreamer and idealist came to the stage, Ronald Reagan. Again the cynics howled and scowled. But he stood up and started preaching optimism and hope. He even dared to voice his belief that communist Russia could be turned toward freedom and Germany could be reunited. In the process of leading the nation to dare to dream, our economic malaise evaporated and the American entrepreneurial spirit led the world into a technological revolution unmatched in history.
It all happened, to the jaw-dropping amazement of cynics worldwide.
As I watched the Britain’s Got Talent video again and again, I tried to remember when I had last felt like I felt watching that video clip. It took me back to 1980.
Perhaps an amazing Scottish spinster has reignited a weary world’s capacity to dream and to hope – once again.