It's a new day in America. The end of the error that was George W. Bush has come, the Democrats are in power and it seems like the entire nation, the entire world, is celebrating this truly historic moment.I've not slept very much and am not ashamed to admit still being a bit hung over (the only reason I got out of bed was to attend a celebratory lunch, which was heavy on celebrating and light on lunch), followed by a similar dinner I've just returned from.
I thought about writing this after I got home from Grant Park at nearly 5 am, but decided against it. At the time I was thinking how I'd spent 2 previous nights getting home at this hour, but both times licking wounds after the crushing disappointment of Kerry in '04 and then equally tough to take Congressional races in '06. This time the body was feeling equally weary and the head was pounding (too much noise, too much alcohol, too little sleep), but mentally I was flying, we did it (and I'm not one to throw around "we").
There are so many reasons why this race is incredibly significant and could stand as a national turning point. Race is such a huge issue in the United States and yet we became the first G7 power to elect a minority. This doesn't solve America's original sin, but it goes a long way to healing it. There is also the nature of the Obama victory. In a country that spent 8 years harshly divided by the new language of "red" and "blue", we now look more like one. This was a call for the nation to be brought together, and the people have confidence in President Obama to do that. There is still reason to be concerned: exhibit a-the behavior of McCain's supporters, exhibit b-that it doesn't appear Plain is going away. However, despite those issues, reconciliation is achievable, President Obama appears ready to take the first step.
The election also brings to an end what, if it wasn't overwhelmingly obvious already, was the reign of the worst president in American history. President Obama is sure to be an improvement, but now its time to get to work and start the long hard process to delivering on those election promises.
Last night was about "yes we can", but soon it will be about making good and turning "can" to "did". President Obama, after 8 years of embarrassment, you've made us proud to be Americans again, now don't let us down!