I did not expect to get teary-eyed during Obama's acceptance speech. If it had only been his words, which were eloquent, resounding, and intelligent, I probably would not have been. It was so much more. When the cameras panned over that crowd, young and old, every race and creed imaginable, and all of them were filled with such energy - such emotion - that was when it got me. That, and when he promised his daughters a puppy to take to The Whitehouse.
Some will say that nothing has changed, and that nothing will change. I say to those folks...wake up. Everything has changed. Everything. The messages sent out in yesterday's election results are clear and strong. The days of old, the way it's alwyas been politics are fading. Fresh minds, fresh faces, and a country that actually seems (at least for the moment) to CARE what's going on - all of this is change. I have lived through a lot of presidents. I've seen some moving speeches, been caught up in my share of causes ... I have never felt the energy that I felt last night in association with any of it.
The country is poised on the brink of so many precipices it boggles the mind. The economy is tanked, the wars are out of control, civil rights issues linger, despite the rhetoric of so many years claiming forward motion. I'm here to tell you today, we have some forward motion right in front of us. The American Dream didn't suffer yesterday, it expanded and raised its head proudly and said - in the immortal words of that old guy in the cart in Monty Python & The Holy Grail - "I'm not dead yet."
Saddened a little, on the brink of what I consider to be the best hope for a new beginning in my lifetime by the hateful Proposition Eight nonsense. Odd that California would vote for change, and vote against the negative posings of (to quote Tim Wise's daughter) "the crazy lady who hates polar bears" - but would deny a group of tax-paying American citizens civil rights. You really can't figure people out...but you can change.
I woke up this morning with a sense of hope I haven't felt in a long time, and with a President Elect who I can respect and be proud of.