David Kirkpatrick

November 5, 2008

Thoughts on Obama and the new USA

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:24 pm

Congratulations to Barack Obama, soon to be sworn in as the forty-fourth president of the United States of America. It’s been written everywhere, but this truly is a historic moment for the US. A black president won’t heal racial strife, but it fundamentally changes the way everyone, of every race, views the issue.

One thing is very clear — the United States will never be what it was just last week. I, for one, think that’s a great thing. Great for black people, great for white people, great for Hispanics, great for Asians, great for American indians, and so on. My point is, hopefully from now on we’ll be much less one of those labels and just simply “Americans.” United and living in the greatest nation of this world.

Obama needed to have a good speech last night. His acceptance speech was great. He didn’t cheer his victory, but he did acknowledge the history of his achievement and he extended a welcome hand to the entire nation, and really the entire world. With one election America became great again.

McCain’s speech was great as well. Can’t say so much for aspects of the crowd who booed and catcalled during the oratory, but McCain worked to heal the raw wounds of a hard fought, and sometimes nasty, campaign.

One thing I did find funny is after McCain completed his concession speech, Palin turned to the mic briefly as though she were going to speak as well. The mic was clearly off, the smile burned off her face and she stalked to the side stage to follow the McCains down the stairway. Today she’s being excoriated for losing the election.

I don’t think she lost the election. I was leaning very heavily for Obama, but the Palin choice made the decision for me. I couldn’t in good conscience put someone of her very meager talent (maybe should put “talents” there … ) that close to the White House.

This race was Obama’s to lose, but McCain had a shot before he picked Palin. I do think she turned an Obama win into an Obama landslide.

Right now, to paraphrase JJ Grey, the sun is shining down and I feel fine. Today is truly a new day in America, and that makes me smile.