Thoughts on the Day After

Our local news report was on when NBC projected Ohio for Obama. During that time in an interview, Cincinnatian and conservative Republican Ken Blackwell not only conceded that it was over, but proclaimed how our country is now the world’s longest running democracy with a transcultural government. With that, think of the many cultural differences fueling fighting and hatred around the world for hundreds or even thousands of years.

I found special meaning in Barack Obama’s description of 106-year-old Anne Nixon Cooper life. The thought that she has witnessed several unimaginable societal changes is a testament of how far we’ve come.

Representative John Lewis (D-Ga) received a near-fatal beating in Selma, Alabama while I was an adolescent in rural Ohio. Although I may appreciate the historic moment, there’s no way I can truly understand what the John Lewises and Anne Nixon Coopers feel today. Meanwhile, Obama’s campaign served as a link to the higher ground for multicultural society acting as one. This was an inclusive campaign by an American who happened to be African American.

Meanwhile, Senator McCain’s acceptance speech may have been the best of this campaign. Because of his commitment to the country he loves, his words weren’t the ones Republicans wanted to hear as they were the words his supporters needed to hear – the need for Americans to rise up and face the difficulties in order to make a stronger country.

Barack Obama ran a great campaign and won fair and square. He also sets the bar high for new expectations while acknowledging the steep hill of change is always slow and filled with trials and tribulations. Americans are a fickle bunch and need to remember that change takes time and we face many difficulties. Like all previous election winners, he campaigned about changing Washington. Can he transform his inclusive nature with the electorate onto a Washington establishment that resists change?

Remember, the current economic conditions, financial systems, terrorist groups, and countries with anti-U.S. sentiments don’t give time. Addressing the difficult force of time is about our country, not a political party. Therefore, I believe President Obama needs to govern from the center. Maybe he can. Hopefully he will.