Friday, November 7, 2008

If It Is Good ... It Is Possible!

The Democratic Activist
Before the hard work begins, let's drink in for a while longer the miracle that's just occurred, and remember The Day: 4 November, 2008.

Only 43 years after the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed legally ending Jim Crow apartheid-like oppression in America, Americans voted a black man into office as the next president of the United States!

We can stop pinching ourselves, now. This is not a dream. It's real.

Not just an epic historic milestone in the maturing of America, Barack Obama's victory in last Tuesday's election is also clearly a defining moment in world history, as evidenced by the world's reaction to his selection as America's next president:


"Now comes the tough part, of course. But the symbolism of this magnificent choice by the American people cannot but illuminate the world."

"Let me tell you that now I believe in American democracy," said Mostafa Eqbali, a merchant in the Iranian capital, Tehran. "Honestly, I did not think that Obama would be president. I thought that the invisible hands of the big trusts and cartels would not allow a black man to be president of the United States."

"This election is going to improve the image the U.S.A. has in our neighborhoods," Lozes said of France's heavily Muslim working-class enclaves. "The American dream comes back to life."

"A lot of people told me they had tears in their eyes last night. I was one of them," Randa Habib, a Jordanian writer and political analyst, said Wednesday. "I saw his speech. I was very moved. This is a lesson to us all, that blacks and whites in America can have such a shameful past between them, yet they come together and learn how to live together."

"There's a feeling of hope that things will be right in America ..."

"... Obama can make you once again respect the U.S. for its values and democracy and all those things we had forgotten about over the last eight years."

"Your victory has demonstrated that no person anywhere in the world should not dare to dream of wanting to change the world for a better place ..."

"Obama won, the map of the United States was transformed and for Mexico an extraordinary opportunity has opened . . . because it will be infinitely simpler to be a neighbor, partner and friend of the United States with Obama."

"... Today is for celebration, for happiness and for reflected human glory," said Britain's Guardian newspaper. "Savor those words: President Barack Obama, America's hope and, in no small way, ours too."

"It shows that anyone can do anything ..."

(To read the quotes in context, click here, here, and here.)


We were petrified that, despite our huge investment of hope and hard work, any one of a number of forces beyond our control would, in the end, rob us of the victory we so desperately needed. The "Bradley Effect." An October surprise. Israel (or the U.S.) would attack Iran. Massive vote rigging. The election would be stolen ... once again.

But it didn't happen. It just didn't happen.

We ... won!

(See here and here.)

The United States and the human race are different, now. Once the impossible appears and stares us right in the face, we can never be the same. Like landing on the Moon in 1969, no one can deny that, if we can do this (and we just did!), we truly can do anything.

Of course, we have much to do in our never ending work to perfect our union, our selves, our world. So many, many things are yet to be accomplished.

But now, truly, we have real reason to be hopeful, even confident, that we can do what needs to be done, that we can in fact be successful. We now have solid, permanent proof positive that nothing good is impossible for America, or for any nation, or for any individual, or indeed for mankind. No matter what else happens, that truth, that fact, cannot be taken from us. It is reality. It is history. It is ours. It is part of Who we are.

Because of this victory of the human spirit, we can never again really believe in resignation, defeat, or despair. From now on, if we choose to believe in those things we can only pretend to do so, because if the United States of America can elect Barack Obama, son of a black Muslim father and a white single mother, as president, in 2008, clearly no good thing is too hard, too unlikely, or genuinely off limits for any or all of us.

Yes, we can.

Yes ... WE CAN!

Thank you.

Pass it on.



Have you come down out of the clouds yet? Is your thinking a bit foggy? Everything still a bit surreal? I think it's called "Joy-Shock."

Joy-shock: marked dizziness and disorientation brought on by the sudden loss of a few pints of cynicism. Often accompanied by exhaustion, euphoria, tremendous relief, teariness, and unexplained crying.

No need for a doctor. Just a few days rest. Then, back to life as usual.

Still, life will never be the same again. It's the end of the world as we know (knew) it. And lots of other cheesy pop song lines.

Highlights from The Day:

The Moment: Live Reaction At Grant Park (Video)

CNN Coverage: Obama Elected President (Video)

NBC calls an Obama win (Video)

Obama Victory Speech (Video/Text)

CNN: Colin Powell Reacts to Obama Victory (Video)

NBC: Change has come to America (Video)

Obama's Victory Celebration in Chicago (Photos)

Grant Park Obama Rally (Photos)

Reactions Around The World (Photos)

See The Obamas And The Bidens Celebrate (Photos)

Tears For Obama (Photos)

Obama Elected President as Racial Barrier Falls

Obama Wins: Why All Americans Have a Reason to Celebrate

Suddenly, it may be cool to be an American again

Tears to Remember

An open apology to boomers everywhere

Grant Park on Election Night

Obama Victory Sparks Cheers Around the Globe – The Hope Wall


  1. Well said, Chris.
    I also appreciate the liberals/progressives who are commenting on Obama's appointees.

    I think a new era has just begun. We will need to work for the changes we want.

  2. No question, Gail, that is true.

    But let's not ever forget that what has just happened was for so long considered unthinkable, even just a couple of short years ago (!!) ... so that when striving to further improve our country, our world, or ourselves we once again face obstacles that seem insurmountable, struggle that seems futile, or walls of resistance or opposition that seem impenetrable, we can recall 4 November, 2008, and regain composure, renew our resolve, and restore confidence rooted in historical fact that if it is good, it is indeed possible.

    Obama's election makes this undeniable:

    Yes, we can!

    There's SOOO much work ahead, and we will, I'm sure, need to remember this critically important truth many, many times in the future.

    But things are different than they were on 11/3/08. Now, all we have to do when discouragement rears its ugly head is to take a look at that poster you see in all high school civics classes showing pictures of all the presidents, notice number 44, Barack Hussein Obama ... and realize that, no matter the difficulties that seem to stand in our way, in actual fact, no righteous goal is impossible.

    Despite the need for continued improvement, life will never be the same again. We can no longer see ourselves, our nation, our world in the same way.

    There is a God (Good). Things do get better. Dreams do come true. Idealism is worth the sacrifice.

    November 4th, 2008 proves it.

    What a great day to be alive!