04 November 2008

I'm not the same person I was

This election has changed me and not in some small way. This election has changed the way I look at the world. I can't go back to the way things were. I won't. I don't want to.

I will never be the same. And because I'm not the same, the world will never be the same. This election, this day, I've undergone a paradigm shift in my life. And because I'm part of a team, I wonder how many other lives will experience this same paradigm shift today.

My voice has convinced a friend. My friends have changed communities. Our communities have changed the shade of states. These states are effecting change in this country. Maybe we can once again change the direction the world is headed. Call it the butterfly effect. Call it hubris. I call it freedom.

I am not the same. I am part of something bigger. I am connected to my fellow man. All because of one man's vision. All because of one man's heart. All because I dared to believe. Dared to have hope.

And while I'm not a fan of sports as an analogy for life, I do think there is something to be said about the struggle. h/t to Al Giordano.


  1. ...I wish I could feel what you felt. Alas, I do not.

    But, happily, I have as much hope and verve and spunk and spit and vinegar as ever, the election hasn't changed it, but perhaps because I feel like I've already changed so much in the past 8 years (and my parents say that I've helped bring them along with me).

    The work has hardly begun, my friend -- getting someone who's arguably a visionary into office is the easy part. Making his visions manifest, making our OWN visions manifest, remains the trick... And I feel skeptical as always that the trick is yet imminent.

    To justify myself a little bit, this isn't just partypooperism; I've witnessed multiple events that I -- and others -- have thought would fundamentally change the landscape. Like 9/11 or (on a much more positive note) the fall of the USSR or, beyond my time of course, the end of slavery, the way the world worked hadn't changed, just part of the landscape, even if it was a big one. I'm not even convinced this is a big change in the landscape, but it is A change; maybe it's the *one* of the changes that charts a new course, where the landscape, slowly or quickly, will change, mountains will move, institutions will fall and a better future will be built. I'm always looking for that to happen and feel positive it will -- the Hopeful side of my Cynicism -- but I'm also always skeptical that the changes we see are the ones that lead to that change'd land. (I'd say "Undiscovered country", but that's a metaphor for death.)

  2. I watched people this morning being inteviewed on CNN. Virginians. Old black women. Old black couples. They cried. They said how they never thought it would happen. They never thought they'd live to see the day.

    Middle aged black voters, who said that--while this was an important day to black Americans--Obama wasn't just a candidate for black America. He is a candidate for America.

    Young black men standing in the voting lines, who said that Obama inspired them to be better.

    I listened to them and understood that this presidential race means different things to different generations.

    What was missing from that report was the attitudes of old white Americans, middle-aged white Americans, and young white Americans.

    I get why the black community thinks this is an important day. But they don't have a corner on te market of the gee-whizism at work here. I think CNN is failing to understand why this is an important day to the white community. Maybe one of the many things that has contributed to this being a transformational day to me is because I am white.

    I'm 45 years old. I haven't felt hope like this in years. And while I can't speak for everyone else who wants to rain on my parade (not that you are), but I know ME. And I know that I am not going to slide back into old habits. An activist has been born in this election. See you on the front lines.