Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Ohio Rocks Obama

Just called my Mother in Columbus - she lobbied hard in her continuing care community - and thanked her for electing the first African American President.

This is really so amazing. I remember growing up in Columbus. We had a black maid, and her son would sometimes visit with us when she baby sat with us. My brother and I felt towards her like we would our mother. But they lived in a different part of town, with a different house, a different future, and their lives seemed very seprate from us. We wanted to spend some time playing with Tyrone. But I remember my parents making comments, explaining to me how that wasn't a good idea, that this area of town was where blacks live because they didn't have the same ambition as whites.

How things have changed. Today, my mother campaigned with her neighbors for Obama. A few years ago I went back to Columbus for the funeral of my former baby sitter, and saw her son again. So much had changed. He had a sucessful career. Comments like my parents wouldn't be thought of any more. And twenty-five years ago, tonight's results wouldn't have been imaginable.

It's not just that Obama is immensely talented and deserves to win this election just for his talents and capability alone. It is, let's admit, ALSO who Obama is, and what this election means for an America that was founded on slavery two hundred and thirty years ago, and has only struggled to escape that history in starts and fits. Today, cities like Columbus, Ohio, are no longer black towns and white towns - they are American towns, and a two-hundred-thirty-year history may have finally reached a tipping point.

I'm really very proud that my home state, Ohio, has been the fulcrum on this historic night.

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