Saturday, November 22, 2008
Times V. Me
Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2008, is a date that will live in fame (the opposite of infamy) forever. If the election of our first African-American president didn’t stir you, if it didn’t leave you teary-eyed and proud of your country, there’s something wrong with you.
Well, I guess there's something wrong with me, because I haven't cried once in the whole month of November.
On Wednesday, there was a run on newspapers, as voters rushed to grab a tangible piece of the history they’d made. My husband Max and I, unable to find extra copies, brought our own worn papers home to 8- and 11-year-old Emilie and Julia.
. . .
But the race thing? The groundbreaking immensity of the election of our country’s first African-American president?
“You’re being racist,” Emilie had said when I made a comment about how particularly earth-moving this election was for black voters. “Why should it matter if people are black or white?”
I guess there's something wrong with them.
Ah, I've found the problem. Once again from Warner:
David Dinkins was similarly solemn. “Things do change. There is a God. They do get better,” said the mayor who presided over New York City at a time of toxic racial tensions.
Obama, too, resisted giddy gladness on Tuesday night. But he did proclaim an end to the world as we’ve known it for far too long.
“To those who would tear the world down: we will defeat you,” he promised. “This is our moment. This is our time.”
The glory of Barack Obama is that there are so many different kinds of us who can claim a piece of that “our.” African-Americans, Democrats, post-boomers, progressives, people who rose from essentially nowhere and through hard work and determination succeeded beyond their parents’ wildest dreams are the most obvious.
Well, I'm none of those, nor do I particularly feel that God has chosen Barak Obama to be president, unlike Mayor Dinkens. I guess that's what's wrong with me.