I wanted to write this morning about feeling irritated. There were these jerky girls who were being divisive at CrossFit last night and I wanted to rant about them. But it all seems insignificant in light of last night's election events.
My God, there were some good speeches last night. The way John McCain applauded President-elect Obama's ability to get involved those people who "mistakenly felt they had no voice" in the election was truly inspiring and for real gracious. That speech was the most genuine and the most human I felt he's been the entire race.
And then Barack Obama spoke! That man can speak like nobody I've ever, ever heard. The most moving moments of the speech for me were the way he referenced the young people (me!) who rejected the myth of our generation's apathy and when he inserted the "Yes we can" refrain into his story. He made the whole speech like a call-and-response oral history of the nation from a Civil Rights perspective.
I think the beauty of his campaign lies not only in the freshness of his promises, but in his ability to energize a nation. When I was working the phone banks in Homewood yesterday, I was initially afraid. I didn't want to ride my BICYCLE through HOMEWOOD. And when I first crossed onto Frankstown Ave, I saw the broken glass in the streets, the litter on the sidewalk, and I felt afraid of poverty and crime.
But then there were old ladies out picking up trash. And old men barbequeing chicken...not for sale but for any passersby who wanted a snack on the way to voting. And every public surface had a Barack Obama sign plastered to it and the streets slowly began to fill with cheerful people voting for the first time. Feeling involved in a nation that has allowed them to be swept to the margins of affluent society. I talked to them on the phone as they waited in line at the polls to cast their vote, and I felt hope.
You know how on Christmas morning the world just seems to feel hopeful for some reason? Or how everyone gets this little flutter of hopeful joy on the morning of a big snowfall? I feel all those things right now. All this anticipation for the next 8 years and I am really, really glad to be American today.