Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Paint It Black

At 11 O'Clock last night many wrongs were made right. Our country has finally disavowed the politics of hate and personal attacks. Our country has finally eschewed the failed policies of G.W. Bush and the republican party. Our country has finally taken the most symbolic of gestures and made a black man the holder of the highest office in this country.

Three hundred and eighty nine years ago the first African slaves were brought to this country at the Jamestown settlement in Virginia (damn those limey bastards!). Last night the citizens of Virginia helped put a man of African decent in the Oval Office. Finally the pride felt by all those immigrant groups who came here post 1619 to seek a better life can be felt by the people whose ancestors were forced to come here, forced to build this country and forced to take there place at the back of the line behind all of those who came after. President Obama's election has not erased the 389 years of misery and pain, but it is a symbol of what can be realized in this great country of ours despite of our faults.

President Obama is not a baby boomer or a Generation X'er. He is like me, the first American children raised in the post civil rights era. We were told that all men were created equal. We were told that color of skin does not define a person. We were told that there should be no limits on what anyone can achieve regardless of where they came from or what they look like. Unlike any generation born prior we drank the Kool Aid and we believed. Of course we had hundreds of years of ignorance and fear to overcome, but we drank the Kool Aid and it made sense, common sense. As children we were unaware of the fact that in the years just preceding our births our sports teams weren't integrated, that black men were not allowed in certain jobs or allowed to eat in certain places. As we grew up we were confused as to why there was all of this emphasis on "race" when we couldn't see the problems. We grew up with black people holding elected office, teaching classrooms, fighting fires and policing the streets. It wasn't until we grew up that we realized what we had heard, seen and observed growing up was just an illusion. Things weren't OK. Racism was still alive and well and feelings of equality and unity were only a recent phenomenon.

The biggest lesson we can gain from Mr. Obama's election is that what you teach your children becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. We can continue to teach our children our idealistic views of how the world should be and if they don't bear fruit immediately, just wait forty years or so and the lessons learned as youngsters will produce amazing things, unbelievable things.

"I see a White House and I want to paint it Blaack...", the Stones bastardized lyrics keep playing in my head. Many of McCain's cronies were saying that when Barack got in office he would paint the White House black. I say "Paint it Black"...why not...this has been 389 years in the making. Our country was built on the backs of Black slaves who had the same wants, hopes and needs as any other human being living in America and now that a Black man will be living in the Whitest of houses let him do whatever he can to improve the human condition for everyone. Even if he paints it black.


ElectionObserver said...

Interesting post and blog. Relevantly, as many influential experts and publications have repeatedly pointed out, Obama is part of Generation Jones, born 1954-1965, between the Boomers and Xers.

Here's a recent 5 minute GenJones video which features many top pundits (including David Brooks, Clarence Page, Dick Morris, Juan Williams, Karen Tumulty, Howard Wolfson, Michael Barone, etc.) specifically talking about Obama membership in Generation Jones:

David Sullivan said...

First I've heard about Gen. Jones as I've always understood that the boomers went until 1963 and Gen Xers started in 1967. I said I my first ever post that we in that "tweener" generation lacked the hubris of the coddled boomers having been subjected to their experimentation, but have a realistic world view and pragmatrism lacking in the Gen Xers. Good video, I'm not sure if Gen. Jones will become a separate decriptive entity.

Dirty Red said...

Another reason why I love your blog man.

You said it brah, and you said it well.

Lil Sully said...

It has been a great accomplishment, yet if anybody belives there will be much "change" they will be wrong. Obama and Mcain are both in the pockets of the bankers or they wouldn't have lined up to give the banks limitless $$ with no restrictions or regulatory watch. said...

Hi there...

Here we go!!

- Toot's grandson
- Michelle's hubby
- Sasha and Malia's daddy
- OUR PRESIDENT, the gap man our lifetime.

CapCity said...

YES!!!! Sending Cyber Hugz 2 ya on this awesome day, David!

plez... said...


as usual... you fail to disappoint!

i still recall how you almost flippantly told me (on plezWorld) that BARACK OBAMA was going to beat Hillary Clinton AND that the "dirty politics" of the Clintons would do Obama some good in the general election.

LO and BEHOLD... you were right on! the long brutal primary campaign seasoned Obama for the fight against the feeble and inept John McCain in the fall campaign for President.

i love the remarkable perspective of your post... yes, BLACK people have been in North America since Day One of the European Invasion of the early 1600's! and you are correct, we've lived here building and defending and loving this country since its founding... AND we waited patiently until last night for this country to finally live up to its creed... over 220 years in the making!

the media has incorrectly portrayed Obama's win as some type of victory for Black people; i disagree, Obama's win was vindication and validation of the American way of life for ALL Americans!

tsduff said...

I enjoyed your post - well said.

Enjoyed some of the other posts below as well... including the bittersweet one about your brother.

Suldog said...

Good post, Cuz.

I think you know I'm not a big Obama fan, but I'm a huge fan of anything that helps to bring all Americans together as just plain old Americans, regardless of any qualifiers. If this helps - and I hope it will - God bless him and his 4 years.

Andraste said...

Bush got a full 8 years to f*ck everthing up, let's hope Obama gets a fair chance, and enough time, to put it all together again.

Last time we had a democrat in office, he left with a budget surplus and unemployment so low a blind leper could have gotten a job as a hospital security guard - seriously.

I say let's give this guy a fair chance at making things right- and a fair amount of time to do it!

You don't get fat overnight, you don't expect to be thin overnight. The economy was 8 years in the making to be blown to shit - it's going to take a lot more than a year to straigten it out!

Andraste said...

straighten has an H in it. I know.

Damn after work beers...

Mushy said...

Why not...give it a chance.