I didn't grow up an African American in the United States so I won't dare try to pretend what Barack Obama's victory means to African Americans. They'll have to tell that story themselves in words and, occasionally, pictures.
The photos truly say it all.
No way to put in words the impact of tonight.
I door knocked this morning for Obama with a fellow from Ghana here on a work visa who took the day off to work for the campaign. We covered our 100 or so homes in Dakota County. He said he was "inspired". I was inspired by him. Thanks, Richard.
Is that all there is to it? A basically unknown man is elected president, and all anybody cares about is that he's about HALF black? That's some cause for celebration? Is that what qualifies him? Does he just deserve it because he's a partial member of a certain race?
No, N. He is an amazing man who happens to be black. The celebration is about the hope for the future because of his qualifications and ability to lead AND because as a black man. This never seemd possible before.
Listening to the victory speech last night reminded me of the end of Return of the Jedi. You could almost see Martin and Rosa smiling and laughing above that crowd.
No, N. Obama is an amazing man who happens to be black. The celebration is about the hope for the future because of his qualifications and ability to lead AND because this never seemed possible for a black man. When my grandpa started voting, a black man couldn't even drink at the same water fountain as a white man. This nation has come a long way, and that is also cause for celebration.
Sorry about the last post. I submitted before I finished editing.
No one deserses to be president. The question is of qualifications. After picking a complete novice for a running mate, after admitting to not being well-versed in economics, after graduating near the bottom of his class in the naval academy (despite having a 4-star admiral for a dad), John McCain couldn't compete against Barack Obama.
Our president-elect is an eloquent law professor who had been head of the Harvard Law review and stood up against an ill-considered and (now) unpopular war. He has proven his intelligence and foresight. He was the better qualified candidate.
I was kind of hoping an African American or two would comment and the people who want to continue the campaign rhetoric would take the day off.
Well, Bob, I'm sorry to preface this with 'I"m white' ...
it means a great deal to me. I'm old enough that it would have been considered remarkable that he even wanted to run for office. A girl in high school warned me no one would want to talk to me if I was friendly with her, simply be cause she was black (and the only one in the whole county). I have friends who were refused service in Alabama because they weren't 'white'. I've seen racism in action; I'm also aware that I haven't been its subject.
There was a woman in the coffee shop today who was totally choked up about this. She was white, too. I cried looking at your pictures here. How could I not be moved?
No, I can't imagine how this plays to a not-white audience. But some of us who are white are pretty goddamn happy about it. I don't want my happiness to be dismissed just because I'm white.
I'm not dismissing it but it's not the point of the post. OK, white folks are happy. But the point is that it has a different meaning to African Americans and white people cannot comprehend it although most think they can.
The most absurd moment of last night was listening to David Gergen explaining what it means to an African American. Rubbish. Utter rubbish.
Bob, it is not all lost hope to wish that an African American would comment on your post, at least so far you will get an African in America to comment:
Well basically America's choice of Obama as the 44th president means that most of us who are ever aware of the ringing NO in our aspirations and dreams; a ring so loud that it defines our lives have a real example of what happens when you turn the no to a yes. This changes our perspective in life, our aspirations, and the things we consider unachievable. It is the power of changing a NO to a YES. It is a big change. I am sure none of us ever thought that we'd live to see a non-white President for America.
You know who I'm going to call as soon as I get to work today? This guy.
Bob, I apologize if my point was (obviously) not well made. No, I don't know.
But ... I want to. What should I do? Walk up to some stranger on the street who happens to be black, and ask "so what does this mean to you?" Which sounds racist, as if there must be some monolithic opinion of one racial group. Yet, in this case, there might be. I hope more people answer you. For my edification at least.
Perhaps the folks who are opining "what it means to be black" (who aren't themselves) are trying to avoid actually asking the African American population.
If you want words, I respectfully suggest starting out over at http://www.theroot.com/
I didn't consider race to be an issue during the campaign, so why should I consider it an issue now? Unless of course, we want to continue to define people by skin color, and not substance.
John McCain picked a novice for a running mate? That may be true but Obama is just as much of a novice. And he was the #1 man on the ticket.
Race is very much an issue in Brack Obama being our next president. Please see Dickens' comments above. Changing a NO to a YES regarding a person's aspirations and dreams is profound.