Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes we can!

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.

It's the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled. Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states.

We are, and always will be, the United States of America.

President-elect Barack Obama

I got out of work at about 1 a.m. and like I always do, I drove by the State House in Providence on my way home. Usually, it's pretty quiet. There's hardly anyone out on the streets and just a few other cars on the road.

So I wasn't prepared for what I saw: hundreds of people walking up the brick pathway, across the gently sloping manicured lawn, toward the building's marble steps.

I did a quick U-turn, parked the car and joined the parade. They were mostly young - black and white - and they were an incredibly joyous bunch, waving American flags and shouting "O-BA-MA" and "Yes we can!"

I stood there for a few minutes, taking it all in, fumbling with my cell phone as I tried to figure out how to take a picture. It was a thrilling end to a truly historic evening. As I headed home, I could hear the crowd singing:

Oh say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?


Amanda said...

One victory down... :)

Emily said...

That's a great story. At one point last night, it hit me that the American flag could mean something positive for the first time in a long time. It's a very exciting time.

Esther said...

Hey Amanda,
The results in California are just very disappointing and very sickening to me, especially the way the "yes" on Prop. 8 folks tried to make it seem as if there were some threat to children if gay and lesbian couples could marry. Nothing is further from the truth. I think Martin Luther King said something about no lie can live forever.

Esther said...

Thanks Emily. It was pretty thrilling to see that big crowd of people head toward the State House. I just couldn't believe it! And it was just perfect to hear them singing "The Star-Spangled Banner" as I was walking away.