Watching History Happen

5 11 2008

I have memories of the Berlin Wall coming down and of South Africa’s first universal elections but having only been 11 for the first (I remember asking my mum why she was crying while watching family and friends being reunited before I went to school that morning) and 16 for the second those memories are sketchy to say the least.  I will remember last night and today far more clearly as being a positive and defining moment in history.

I listened to Obama’s acceptance speech on the way to work and more than once the tears were falling, probably the most when he said something about if you were ‘listening huddled round radios in the forgotten corners of the world’ and I was left thinking about everyone I knew in Malawi who would be doing exactly that.  When I was there I was often asked about politics and people there were so excited about the possibility of Obama becoming president.

I hope that as a result of this election at some point if I were to go back to Chicago I would not see the same division between the jobs people had and the places they went that I felt so keenly when I was there recently.  How amazing it would have been to have been there last night!




One response

6 11 2008

I only briefly saw the news in the morning after Obahama was elected but even then there were a few tears and I even get emotional reading the newspaper reports and comments. It is hard to know quite why but hopefully it is because he is genuinely a good thing, someone who may well bring to fruition Martin Luther King’s dream of character being what is important not the colour of a person’s skin. That said few of us expected to see someone relativley young and black in the White House at this point in history. May this bode well for change for the better in the hard task he has before him.

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