Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Remarkable Event

I came through the sixties. I graduated from high school in 1962. I recall the Kennedy Era, as short lived as it was. I remember LBJ signing civil rights legislation. I was too young to appreciate the impact and too isolated to understand segregation. I do remember seeing the attacks by police in southern cities on the peaceful demonstrators. I was shocked, angered, and embarrassed that citizens could not get along. I participated in civil rights discussions in college and always had a kind of naive misunderstanding about why should we grant Negroes rights under the law when they already had them. I did not understand a lot.

Part of my education as an adult was to develop an understanding. It did not change my feeling that we are all equal, not just under our law, but under the laws of nature. So today, January 20, 2009 is not a complete surprise. The swearing in of citizen Obama as our president is the justification for all of the demonstrations, all of the physical pain and psychological torment endured in the name of freedom. It is also natural. It is not just a coming of age of the black race, it is a coming of age of all American citizens.

I do not agree with much of his political agenda, or at least the means he ascribes to accomplish economic recovery. I do agree that he is the best man at this time for the job. I do not recall the presidential process creating such excitement in the electorate since JFK. Thank goodness we haven't attached any labels like Camelot to the start of the Obama administration. Right now, he is winning high marks from many people, six months from now we shall see. I wish him well, he seems like a good man.

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