jueves, junio 05, 2008

El efecto Obama en la psique americana

Hasta 1965 (hace 43 años) la población negra no podía votar en Estados Unidos. Lo sucedido en la noche del martes 3 de junio de 2008 demuestra que a pesar de sus problemas, la sociedad apun da buenas sorpresas. Ya quisiera ver yo un candidato presidencial negro en Francia o Japón. Varios lectores han enviado sus pensamientos al blog de Andrew Sullivan sobre este momento histórico. Copio:

  • Tomorrow I will go to the African American cemetery outside of Chicago where my great-grandparents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors, and my mother and father are buried. And I will tell them that they were right -- that if we studied hard, worked hard, kept the faith, fought for justice, prayed, that this day would come. And it has.

  • My grandfather, 86 years old and a veteran of WWII, just gave me a call. He was calling all of his grandchildren to let them know what an important night this was in the history of our country.Grandpa drove a truck for over 50 years, and he told the story of how he drove with a team of drivers, 2 white (including him), and 4 black. When they stopped at the truck stops, the black drivers had to use seperate restrooms and showers, and had to eat in a small room in the back of the kitchen. Grandpa and his co-driver would eat in the back with the rest of the team, and while they didn't speak of it at the time, they knew it was wrong yet felt powerless to change it, and believed that it would never change.Tonight, he told me, we have come full-circle. Many people, especially the younger generation who supported Obama, will never fully realize the historical import of what happened tonight. But he wanted his grandchildren to know this story that he had never told us, and it was the second time in my 33 years that I have heard my grandpa cry.

  • My mom owns a restaurant in a tiny Illinois town. This is the type of place where farmers come in at 4:30am before the doors are ‘officially’ open. It is the type of place where dozens of people gather every morning to talk about the day’s news. Anyway, my mom told me a story about a group of older gentlemen who were discussing Senator Obama. And, over the course of their discussion the men managed to utter a few derogatory/racist remarks concerning a black man becoming President.

The story isn’t about racist small towns. The real story is my mother’s reaction. Instead of simply chalking this situation up to ignorance and letting the comments go - my mom confronted the table.

As she tells it, she came out from behind the stove - and in come colorful language - promptly told them to shut up. She told me later that she ‘couldn’t that in this day and age, attitudes like that even exist anymore.’ This is my mother who doesn’t remember voting in any election, let alone the Democratic Party’s nominating process.

Our willingness as a Americans to stand up to ignorance, to take on tyranny, and to end oppression is what makes this nation the greatest country in the world. My mother’s story is a great example of how Senator Obama’s campaign succeeded.

Her story is my story. It is your story. It is America’s story.

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