A Few Quick Thoughts About McCain’s Acceptance Speech

Can McCain do it? Can he outperform Palin? He certainly has to, if he doesn’t want the news media and the comedians to tear him apart.

Before McCain came onto the stage, his wife Cindy spoke to the delegates and to the TV audience. Her speech certainly did not compare to Michelle Obama’s speech. And she did not necessarily have to since the headliner tonight was her husband. In Denver, however, Michelle headlined the opening evening. She faced a huge challenge, but she succeeded. She was humble and “human.” (cf. Jon Stewart) And she showed Americans that she is patriotic. Cindy McCain’s faced a lesser challenge: She merely introduced her husband. She did not have to rebuke any criticism like Michelle.

The audience cheered when McCain entered the arena. But the atmosphere did not compare to the excitement and enthusiasm at Invesco Field. Quite a few seats in the Xcel Energy Center remained empty. Nobody stood in the stairways, nobody had to because there was a seat for everybody.  

Soon after McCain started his speech, a protester held up a banner and disrupting McCain’s words. The banner sayed “McCain Votes Against Vets” and “You Can’t Win An Occupation” on the backside. The crowd reacted in a very “American” way… Shouting “USA, USA, …” Silently implying that anyone who has a different view is not a good American, not patriotic. Throughout the whole Republican convention, patriotism seemed to be the way too heavy icing on the cake. From my German perspective, the patriotism was almost scary. The Japanese reporter sitting next to me agreed.

McCain gave his speech in front of a screen that turned from green to blue during the speech. It looked like he was an actor shooting a scene for some Hollywood movie that would later be enriched with special effects. It could also be raw material for the second Colbert “Make McCain Exciting Challenge.”

The most memorable line in the speech from my point of view was when McCain said: “Lets take the best ideas from both sides.” I almost started to burst out laughing because it had so much similarity to a line Paris Hilton used in her fake campaign ad.