Saturday, November 08, 2008

Congratulations to President Elect Obama

Without saying where I stand on who I voted for this election I have to say that I think it's a really big deal that Barack Obama was just elected President of the United States. In the lifetimes so many people who read this blog we've had race riots in this country, discrimination, real bigotry, and a real belief, even five years ago, that there wouldn't be a black president in our lifetimes.

Now, his being black, or half black, maybe being half is worse if you ask some people, shouldn't be a reason for someone to vote for him. I don't know. I was raised by a couple who wouldn't, and didn't, and don't, raise racist kids. We weren't brought up that way and while I'd be stupid to say I am color blind, I'm not, I don't think I was brought up to make decisions about people based on race. But I am glad, as an American, that my country has, in my lifetime, elected a non-white guy president.

I hope the next four years are good ones. I hope we're not tested really soon and get to enjoy the idea of an America that has really begun to heal in earnest from a disease we trully began recovering from during the civil rights movement.

Good night all. I'm closing with a quote we'll probably hear a lot over the next few days.
Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. And I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the promised land. And I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.
 Martin Luther King

As an aside... in the days since I accidentally posted this on the wrong blog (danger of having two I guess) I've been surprised at the number of watermelon and other off color jokes I've gotten about the new president. I don't know which is worse, that people see this historic election as a good time to fuel the fires of racism, or that they think I'm the type of person that thinks it's funny. I'll be the first to admit I'm not a fan of a lot of stuff Obama wants to do. I've no clue how he plans on paying for healthcare, but I haven't fully supported everything a president did in all the time I've been voting.

What I liked about the Obama campaign, and what I continue to like about it is that its message of hope contrasted quite nicely with the fear, danger, doom, paranoia life we've been subjected to. That sort of low grade chronic stress was in no way improving my life, health, or happiness. It may be that we go singing and dancing to the death of Rome but by gum we haven't tried that yet and this whole war on terrah thing with us spying on ourselves, ignoring constitutional freedoms of our own citizens, and screeching about how doomed we all are that 'they' are out to get us... that didn't work and arguably made my life, health, and happiness worse. Torture people. We are America and we don't do that. Seriously. We have to draw the line somewhere or we're not worth defending.

So, post-election I'm more excited about an Obama win than I was pre-election. Change is scary. He'll make bad decisions, and he'll make mistakes, and he'll do things I don't agree with. So did Bush. So did Clinton. If we held out for perfect I'd have to be president and quite frankly... I wouldn't take the job.
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