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:
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.