Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Day 138: Released: Joy and elation

hyperakt design

It is a new day in America and I am waking up actually feeling proud about being here. This is a unfamiliar feeling. Last night there was a tremendous release of energy that has ushered in what seems to be a new reality. This reality feels lighter, deeper, and completely unrecognizable from anything that has come prior. I can't wait to walk out into it today, although I sense that it is going to take some time for this realization, and all that it changes (and improves) to sink in. Standing on 5th avenue last night it seemed as though people were waking up, letting all of the tension, anger, frustration and numbness that had set in over the last 8 years, and oh so much longer, rise-up and break free. People are simply estatic and in awe. It was incredible to go to sleep hearing the screams of joy rise up from the streets and know that this is a first step towards so many deeply terrible wrongs beginning to change. Barack Hussein Obama is our president elect and January 20, 2009 simply cannot come soon enough.

I read this in the Times this morning and thought it was worth reproducing here:

And Then They Wept, By Charles M. Blow

History will record this as the night the souls of black folk, living and dead, wept – and laughed, screamed and danced – releasing 400 years of pent up emotion.

They were the souls of those whose bodies littered the bottom of the Atlantic, whose families were torn asunder, whose names were erased.

They were those who knew the terror of being set upon by men with clubs, of being trapped in a torched house, of dangling at the end of a rough rope.

They were the souls of those who knew the humiliation of another person’s spit trailing down their faces, of being treated like children well into their twilight years, of being derided and despised for the beauty God gave them.

They were also the tears of those for whom “Yes We Can, ” Obama’s campaign slogan, took on a broader, more profound meaning.

“Yes We Can” escape the prison of lowered expectations and the cycles of poor choices. “Yes We Can” rise above history and beyond hatred. “Yes We Can” ascend to Martin Luther King’s mountain top and see the promised land where dreams are fulfilled, where the best man wins and where justice prevails.

During this election African-Americans, their hearts weary from disappointment, dared to hope and dream again. Tonight their dream has been realized.

Whether or not you agree with Barack Obama’s politics, there is no denying that his election represents a seminal moment in the African-American narrative and a giant leap forward on the road to America’s racial reconciliation.

In fact everyone, regardless of race, should feel free to shed a tear and be proud of how far our country has come.

Feel free to share your thoughts.


Anonymous said...

Four years (2004) ago I went to Yoga Class and everyone was depressed. Somehow GW Bush had won again.
Today at Yoga..... the class was full of joy.

All of us were proud to finally have an incoming leader we hope will make us all proud. Our teacher had everyone "stand on their heads" (most with help). But, YES WE CAN!

Our work is not done..... We must all continue working for our causes.
But.... GPW would have been thrilled!
Even though I voted for Cynthia... I am happy that the USA has a #44 who seems to have the heart of the world open to him.
I am looking forward to just thinking about those 2 little girls .... (the 1st daughters) spreading sweet karma in a white house that some thought was only a house for whites.................

Drew said...

All day I was obsessed with the idea of searching the NYTimes archive for election 2004 coverage. When I got home from work/class and after doing a bit of writing I set out to feel, again, the sadness and dispair of November 5, 2004.

I think it's part of my mourning/elation process. Did this trauma really happen? Why do I feel like keeping it present in my mind? It seems dangerous to forget these horrible times, and necessary to let joy rip loose simultaneously.