Wednesday, November 5, 2008

It Happened

The last few days have been a lot. I have a couple remarks:

There's an incredible sense of "we" in this victory. Maybe it's because I surround myself with liberals and Obama supports in particular, maybe it's because I live in Chicago. But the rhetoric has all been focused on a communal achievement. I went down to Grant Park Tuesday night, and one of the common cries was "We did it." Not He did it or They did it but We did it. That's something. Maybe it's always like this when a president you support wins (I wouldn't know), but something felt different.

This was my first presidential election. My father is in his mid-50's. Earlier in the campaign he told me that he never thought he would live to see a Black person with a chance to be the next president. Much less to win. He thought (and a sentiment I've heard echoed countless times) that never in his lifetime did he think that we as a country would do this. What will the election be like when my children vote for their first president? How far have we come, and how far is there left to go? Sometimes in movies a Black guy (often Morgan Freeman) will be cast as the president to show that in this fictional world things are really great and advanced. Now we did it.