Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A new era...

I sit here listening to John McCain as he concedes the presidential race to Barack Obama and can't help but think about what my Daddy's reaction would have been had he lived to see a black man win the White House.
He would have taken McCain's defeat has hard as I'm sure any other Republican is tonight because he was one of the biggest Bush and McCain supporters I knew. He stayed glued to Fox News like it was his television Bible... a fact that we talked about on more than one occasion.
Not every Republican who cast a vote today... and I live among more than one of them... voted to keep a black man out of office. But I know it would have been first and foremost on my Daddy's mind and he would have made it clear to anyone who asked him.
Daddy grew up in the 1930's Depression-era South... where poor white people worked alongside poor black people picking cotton and tobacco for shelter and little pay.
He could talk to any black person he met, but I never knew him to have a close black friend. I would be lying if I described Daddy as anything other than a man who clearly thought black people were inferior to whites.
I always thought that it was not only because of Daddy's southern raising, but the fact that he wasn't educated that never allowed him to see past skin color. There would have been no way he could have supported Barack Obama... even had he been Republican.
Obama's win tonight brings about a world of changes... it shows the majority of this country believes we can move beyond our past and start another chapter in our history. I agree with commentators who say this nomination will change the world's perception of our country, but only time will tell if those changes will be positive in the long run.
I have my fears about the years ahead with Obama as president... different fears than I would have had if McCain won. Pat and I both got out today and voted... and you can't complain about the results if you haven't let your voice be heard.
I'm sure all of us will have complaints over the next four years... we'll have to see what happens, but you have to agree it's going to be one helluva ride.

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