There’s plenty of time to discuss the election’s impact on the subject of this blog. For now, here’s something off topic.
I had the opportunity to attend Senator Obama’s last campaign rally in
The event was held at an agricultural fairgrounds, in a field that stretched way up a hillside. The place eventually filled in with about 90,000 nice people, incredibly packing the entire hillside. The crowd was diverse and skewed toward younger Americans, probably because of the challenges of parking, walking to the site, and standing in an open field with no seating late into the night.
Long before the program began, I turned to a black man standing next to me and made an attempt at light humor, telling him that in about three and a half hours, the program would be starting right up.
“I’ve been waiting my whole life,” he responded.
I got the point.
We were in the Old Dominion, a former slave state that housed the seat of the 19th century Confederacy and that met 20th century integration with “massive resistance.” Two fine candidates were ending campaigns that were fundamentally about their own qualities and ideas, and about the country’s challenges. We witnessed the end of one candidacy that was not about race, but that in itself marked a milestone in our nation’s history, and would have done so regardless of which candidate won.
“A more perfect union” were the words that came to mind.
My friend in that field had been waiting his whole life, he said. So too, I suppose, had been
[Washington Post photo]