Wednesday, November 05, 2008

the end is near

And by the end, I mean the end of the Bush era. I guess it has been near for awhile, but until last night it still felt like Bush's reign (of terror?) would never actually end.

As an outsider looking in, I really felt the excitement of the Americans who had been hoping for a change for so long. I emailed and facebooked back and forth with my American relatives (first apologizing for not getting my butt in gear and figuring out how to vote as a dual citizen) and I could feel the hope. It felt like there was a buzz. No one was sure it would actually happen and now a sigh of relief that it did. (though, as my aunt said, regardless, the Bush era is all but over. and whether it was McCain or Obama, that is what mattered the most to her)

It is strange, as someone who hasn't really ever thought that race was a big deal (probably because I am white and don't have to personally deal with racial discrimination in my daily life), I kind of thought "Um, I don't get what the big deal about a black president is" (mostly that I don't understand why someone would use race to determine their vote). But as I was listening to Obama's speech this morning (you know me, i like my bed times early...so i was in bed when his speech was made), I think I finally got it. As he was describing the voter who has, in her lifetime, not been able to vote because she is a woman and because she is black, I think I finally got it.

And what a great thing for black Americans everywhere to be able to look their children in the eyes, tell them they can be anything, and believe it.

What's next? Hopefully for mothers everywhere to be able look their daughters in the eyes, tell them they can be anything, and believe it.

7 comments:

kris said...

On the news I heard a black woman with infant twin sons say that their worldview will be completely different from hers because they will grow up for the first eight years of their lives with a black president (I guess that's being optimistic). It was interesting that she said now mothers like her will be able to tell their sons that they can be whatever they want. Who would have guessed that racism would be overcome (in this way) before sexism?

K said...

It became unacceptable to joke about race/racism quite some time ago, whereas it is still acceptable to joke about gender/sexism. So I guess I'm not surprised that racism "has fallen" (it definitely hasn't actually fallen, there are still racists out there, but you know what I mean) before sexism has.
I guess what scares me is that when it comes to sexism, I don't know what it will take.

kris said...

Hill-a-ry, Hill-a-ry!

K said...

I have no idea if Hillary would have been the right one for the job...but one day there will be a "first gentleman".

Heather said...

I've had goose bumps for the last 2 days! I don't know what else to day but that.

K said...

I bet Hawaii was pretty excited!

S said...

Sadly, I'm not at all surprised that the black male president came before a woman president. Black men got the right to vote before we did, too, remember.

But since I really liked President-Elect Obama (doesn't that sound grand?!) as a candidate, I will just be happy for the woman with the infant twin sons and will wait patiently for the turn of all the women with daughters.