I’m not one to talk politics in public but I will for the sake of a good friend of mine who said that she’d read “in a heartbeat” a political update I wrote. Mel, this one’s for you so I’m going to pretend that this blog entry is one long e-mail to add to your growing inbox.
Not going to lie, I broke down in tears much like Jesse Jackson did after finding out President Obama won the election. President Obama. Wow. I can’t believe that’s real. But it is! Can you believe it? The first thought that ran through my head after I saw him crying was, Wait a second, wasn’t there beef between the Rev and Obama over the summer? That faux pas now seems like ages ago because those tears I saw streaming down Rev. Jackson’s face last night were sincere tears of joy, pride, astonishment, and “We did it!” Did you catch Oprah’s tears? She was standing near the Rev. Oh, man. I could go on about her tears. Her makeup didn’t smear. Oprah is divine. The Rev, Oprah, and I probably cried enough tears to sail the Queen Mary around the world and back again. And don’t get me started on my favorites, Jill and Joe Biden. When Joe walked out to join Obama on stage my heart swelled so big. Sobbing. Sobbing my eyes out. Then when Jill walked out with Joe’s mom I just about lost it. I swear, Mel, if I ever met Jill Biden I would pee my pants. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself. I’d have to write down on a piece of paper all the things I’d tell her otherwise I’d be a blubbering idiot. I think I’m more in love with the Bidens than I am with the Obamas! Should I feel guilty? Ha!
I’ve never been emotional or heated about elections. Granted, I’ve only been eligible to vote for two presidential ones, including this one, but still. I didn’t realize how emotional this whole thing had been for me until I – WE – heard the results of who would be our next president. I’ve never been a patriotic person but, man, I can’t describe to you how proud I felt of everyone who voted – regardless of who they voted for – when I went to my polling place and saw my fellow neighbors walking to the polls as well. We mattered. We matter! How wonderful is that?
Is it naive to say that I really really believe faith has been restored in the country? That I really, truly, 100 per cent feel there will be a change? Not to quote Oprah, but to quote Oprah, “It feels like there’s a shift in consciousness. It feels like something really big and bold has happened here” (Sidenote: After Oprah said that, the reporter who was asking her how she felt post-election said she, the reporter, was also a woman of color. Oprah smiled, cupped her head, and said, “We’re women of color!” To which I exclaimed at my computer screen, “I’m a woman of color too!” Women of color. HOLLER.). Yes, yes, yes! When one man can get that many people to join him (Did you see how PACKED Grant Park was?!), you have to give him credit. He must be doing something right if he can inspire that many people. I will say that he also has a lot to do with getting more people to register to vote for the first time, with getting people who don’t usually vote to vote. I’m no political analyst but his simple presence in the election had that kind of effect. I read somewhere that this whole thing is not just about a man, it’s about a movement. Last night was the mark of the beginning of a great movement. Forward.
As you can imagine it was a bit awkward for me to watch the results at home considering my parents and I have differing political views. I ended up watching Obama’s acceptance speech alone. That was frustrating. One of my hopes is that McCain/Palin voters follow McCain’s suit and take this with humility and grace. McCain’s speech following his defeat was just as it should be. Not going to lie here either, I sobbed my way through McCain’s speech too. No one can deny how much respect and love he has for our country. The crazy part is, I really do like the guy. Last year when the race was just underway, I was open to the possibility of him as president if Obama or Hilary lost. He wouldn’t have been my first pick but I’d deal with it just fine. However, it became obvious after primaries ended that his campaign was getting desperate and he seemed to be losing sight of things. I just wish he could have chosen a better VP. He could’ve chosen anyone – Huckabee for Christ’s sake! Sorry, I’m not a Palin gal. But God bless her! 😉
OK, seriously. McCain’s speech gives me hope that, yes, we should – and we can – find ways of meeting somewhere in the middle. He asked supporters to lend their support to Obama. He sees now that, yes, it is possible to cross party lines and unite. The voters and vote results are testament to that. From what I’ve seen and read, it is upsetting that the Republican party seems to have been overtaken by these neoconservatives who go on spreading hate rhetoric, inciting fear, and generally being very hostile people. Again, maybe I am being naive but I hope those 10 minutes of John McCain’s speech wisened up a lot of people in his party. What I would love to see is a good solid real Republican party. Come on you elephants! Let’s get these next four years going. Make it count! I know you’re out there!
Gosh, how and when did this country get so divided? Should we attribute this all to the Bush administration? I honestly don’t think things ever got to be this bad until he came into town. Hmmm.
Last night felt like Christmas morning. I’m crazy tripping happy. On a complete high. Like everyone else, I’m anxious to see the new direction our country will take. It will take awhile for Obama to gain the support of others but I have faith he can do it. He’s got A LOT of cleaning up to do but, according to the voters (US GUYS!!!!!!), we’re willing to take that risk. You can do it Mr. Prez.
I’m off to bed. Mel, this is so corny, but really I’m just so excited to wake up tomorrow knowing full well that while I still have to fill out these damn grad school applications, continue to find another part time job, and try to find a way to pay for classes I want to take next semester, I know things are going to be slightly different. It’s going to be tough but it’s also going to be so so great.
Lots o’ McLovin’,
P.S. Godspeed with apps. UGH. Killing. Me. Softly. *Pounds mouse on desk*