On Saturday, we attended a Social Justice Expression Party. Everyone there was white (Jrex couldn't come). We listened to the entire MLK "I have a dream" speech. I'd heard the last part many times, but never the whole thing.
My Mom was at that March on Washington. It happened while she was living in Baltimore. She told me that when they went, they literally expected snipers to be picking them off from rooftops. They truly thought they might die, but went anyway. I asked what she thought of the speech, she smiled, "Well, we'd already been standing there for two and a half hours, so we were working our way out of the crowd and away when he started. We didn't know the Baptist tradition of saving the best for last."
As many people have observed, you couldn't sell this as a script in Hollywood, "OK. The day after Martin Luther King Day, let's have the first black president sworn in."
I'm just so happy that this has happened while so many of the Civil Rights warriors are still alive to see it. At that time, I doubt any of them imagined a black president could happen in their lifetimes.
My office broadcast the ceremony in the lobby this morning. They served breakfast and most of the office sat rapt in front of the three large screen TVs. Jaded Californians were crying. I realized that most Americans DO want to be patriotic, but have been waiting for a reason. Barak's ability to draw sides together and create a new platform for discussion are drawing forth the hope in this country that most people have been afraid to acknowledge. I know he's not the next Messiah or anything, obviously the shine will get knocked off, but I'm really happy today.
The fact that he said, "All are created equal." He included women.
The fact that he reached out to enemies and tried to create grounds for discussion without providing a laid down 'walk-on-me' carpet.
The fact that he wants a discourse based on our common country, common interests, honesty, integrity. That he gives us permission to find those together.
I'm glad to be alive in such a time as this.