Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Pride


Last night was an amazing experience. I spent the evening in a local Brooklyn restaurant/bar with a large group of friends and several hundred others, being swept away by wave after wave of ecstasy as new states were announced in the Obama column. After the past two elections, it was so hard to believe that it would not somehow be stolen away at the last minute, but as the evening wore on, people began to lower their guard.

When CNN called it for Obama, the entire city erupted in a roar. The bar we were in was on the second floor, with a rooftop patio overlooking the street below. Inside, hundreds of people were packed together, arms raised above their heads, screaming and jumping and laughing and crying and screaming some more. Outside, the streets were suddenly filled with people, cars, buses, bikes, and noise of all kinds. It was a scene from the overthrow of a dictator's regime in a third-world country but without the violence. It was like the city had won the World Series or the Super Bowl, but without the violence.

Makeshift bands marched down the street banging on pots and pans, cars honked incessantly, three times in a row for O-ba-ma. Flags were being waved out of car windows, people stood up through their sunroofs waving signs. And this was just a small neighborhood street in Brooklyn. Times Square must have been amazing.

Every person, without fail, had a grin from ear to ear. For hours, people just roamed the streets hugging, shouting, honking, laughing, lighting firecrackers, celebrating with strangers. I can't adequately express how wonderful it was to be a part of such a giant leap forward for this country, and how grateful I am that I was in a city that can truly appreciate it en masse. I feel for my friends in states that voted for McCain, with only a handful of people to celebrate with.

Two other victories I am excited about are the passage of Prop 2 in California, an historic vote to ban certain cruel farming practices, and the success of Question 3 in Massachussetts, which bans dog racing in that state.

All around the country, people stood up and said "enough with the bullsh*t." For the first time in many years, I'm proud to be an American. Time to take the Canadian flag off my backpack.

22 comments:

Kreisler said...

Times Square WAS nuts, indeed. I'll post a video soon...

Yay.

Mike said...

Congratulation from France!

Jeremy said...

I am still pinching myself, its is just so awesome. I keep being reminded of the idiot at the McCain rally that had the nerve to dictate to God who He is for and to defeat other "gods'" prayers.

What is that asshole thinking right now? Does he get the message from God? Or will he try to find some other reason Obama won. Dick.

Anyway, sounds like you had fun, Dan. I celebrated in my living room with my wife and kids. We were so ecstatic and happy. Oregon of course went to Obama.

I had a neat idea for a comic this morning. Obama standing in front of the U.S. Constitution guarding it with a shield and sword while 2 large armoured guys come at him labeled Gay Marriage Ban and Abortion Ban.

La Framéricaine said...

Ditto!

derekamalo said...

sadly the whole world knows that this election was mccains to lose and he did when he picked palin ...a blackman got in white house beofore a woman had potentially the chancee...this just shows a woman has no chance ..

i heard some elders contemplating he was half black so its not bad

dropping the issue of color ..i follwed the obama campaign and listened to him if hes sincere the country made a great choice palin will not be nothing but joke folklore like geraldine ferraro both no ones going nowhere

a strong obama played failry he knew he didnt have to pick clinton as a running mate...good for him im happy for him

Howard said...

What a contrast to this pathetic report in north Manhattan, a truly miserable scene for those who call this bar "home": http://tinyurl.com/6rsx6x

Robert Finis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan D-L said...

It would have been great to be in NYC last night, or Chicago, San Francisco, just to share in the exuberance of it all. But even here in small-town Arizona we had a great time, if on a smaller scale. Last night a bunch of us got together; we raised the roof when the west coast came in and sealed it. Such relief and happiness.

Robert Finis said...

I'm still kind of wobbly. Joy isn't something I generally do. I live outside of Dallas. I was spending the night in, and when my gf and I went outside after the announcement, we heard a few shouts in the distance, but that was it. But that's getting pretty wild for the suburbs. I hear Austin was crazy, though.

The place I really wish I had been is Chicago. That was an amazing scene. Even rock bands can't draw crowds that large.

msveee said...

i don;t know if you remember me...(friend of pam and hilary, bobby, too)...
of course, from one of those "states" that voted red.
although, in the hood...oak cliff that is...it was pandemonium...bishop arts held a party...people went crazy...
the tide it is a changing...even here.
veronica

Jezzka said...

what a tremendous evening...

thedanmancan said...

Obama winning, prop 2 passing and question 3 passing in MA are all amazing!
What is a shame is the gay marriage ban in FL, AZ & CA and the bill passed in AR that bans any unmarried couple from adopting or fostering a child.

Jodie said...

Another Texan here from the Dallas 'burbs in Collin County.
;-)
I felt so good last night, but this morning I turned on the TV rapidly to make sure that I hadn't dreamed it. I'm sure most of the folks in my heavily Republican county were in mourning, but my husband & I are very happy!
Even with the huge problems and issues awaiting the new administration in January, I feel just a sense of relief that America will be a sane place again. Hopefully we'll end the torture of our prisoners of war in Cuba and elsewhere, restore the Genieva Conventions, restore our tarnished image with the rest of the world, improve the economy and right MANY wrongs that have occurred in the past 8 or more years. A Dem/Dem/Dem administration/Senate/House is a wonder that I've never seen in my 48 years of life. AMEN!

marin_explorer said...

"It was a scene from the overthrow of a dictator's regime in a third-world country but without the violence."

Even here in my part of California, where it was celebrated quietly, it felt like a regime change--by the best possible way: democratically. I'm very proud how much of America realized that race does not determine people or their qualifications. This is a turning point in our history.

"What is a shame is the gay marriage ban in FL, AZ & CA and the bill passed"

Agreed--I don't understand how people feel compelled to invalidate their lifestyle; they wouldn't like being treated that way.

munchy365 said...

I bet that even some McCain voters were partying, just because Bush is gone. But not the die-hards.

Cat Mom said...

My family (3 white adults over age 50 living in WA state) watched it all on TV. During Obama's acceptance speech I looked over at my normally stoic husband and saw that he was crying.

I haven't asked him if it was because we've finally made history as a country by electing a black man, or by electing a president with wisdom and integrity. Neither of those seemed possible in OUR lifetime.

Remember the "Jed Bartlett for President" bumper stickers in The West Wing's heyday? I thought that could never happen in real life, but it has. The corruption of American politicians and the stupidity of the American electorate has given me cause for nothing but cynicism for most of my adult life, and yet, somehow, everything we loved about Jed Bartlett is actually embodied in a real person who, miraculously, is now The President of the United States.

JafaBrit's Art said...

I am so glad Prop 2 passed, that is brilliant. As of obama, YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

doug nicodemus said...

you think it was great here. got kin who are missionaries in kenya. the entire country danced in the streets and they declared yesterday a national holiday. obama day.

nobody had to go to work. of course my kin were not happy...being republicans...ahhh the irony. getting a day off from a guy you can not stand. now thats funny.

mjohnson said...

Jealous! I was asleep in London. It was our Guy Fawkes night so I drew a little picture of all the world celebrating together. Your party sounds better though.

http://mgfgtg.blog.co.uk/2008/11/06/ob1-4992772

Penny said...

I still have no words to articulate how thrilled and thankful I am.

anonymous said...

we all fully understand that, penny.

Anonymous said...

Obama is not black. He's mulatto.

I hope he gets struck by lightning.