Last night I watched as first my state, and then my country elected a person of color to the office of President. Future generations will sing of the decisions that we made on this historic day, and I am proud to be an American this morning, to live in a land where everyone has a voice.
Sitting at a party given by a man I am now proud to know as my friend – Commissioner Ray Judah – who was celebrating his own victory of winning the office of Lee County Commissioner for the 6th straight time, I watched as news footage rolled in from around the country. As the states turned blue, people on TV cried and sang. As my own state finally turned blue – making this the first time since the Dixiecrats that Florida has gone to a Democrat – my jaw dropped and I began to feel as if anything were possible. The old-timers, including my sweet Dad, will say that it is a sign that the damn Yankees have finally overrun Florida and it is time to go. That may be true, but Virginia and North Carolina went to Obama, too, showing that bigotry no longer has such a stranglehold on the Deep South.
John McCain, in the most eloquent concession speech I have ever witnessed, enouraged his followers to move forward and unite this country around our new president. I agree – if we are too accomplish anything, we must do it as a whole.
Congratulations to Ray Judah, to President-Elect Obama, and to my fellow citizens! Today, we write history.