Historical Change

Reading all the post-election commentary, I was struck by the consistent tone of relief. Regardless of what you might think about John McCain–he may have been a fine man at one point, but he sold his soul for a chance at the presidency–it would have been a major national screw up to have failed to vote Obama into office.

As for the historical change part, electing a black man is president is a major milestone, but it doesn't necessarily mean anything will change. Change will happen only when our political discourse changes. If Obama can change the terms through which we conduct our national debates–unless our public sphere changes for the better–then he truly would have brought about change we can believe in. He's certainly poised to do just that.

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1 Comment

  1. It IS a major milestone, the summit of yet another plateau. It is as if ‘the burden of the past’ has truly been taken off the hands of the American people, albeit for only a fleeting moment in their history.The president elect IS the change. The only part of his victory speech that did not resonate with me personally was the ‘American Dream’ part, not least of course because I, as a non-American, can have no clue, nor be inspired, by it. In my keyhole-large, media-corrupted view of the aspirations of the people of the United States, their ideals seem ultimately translatable into total freedom of the individual attained through national unity. (True/False?)
    Yet it seems to me you can only have moments of each, that is, of total freedom or of national unity, since they seem like two opposing forces perched rather precariously on the ends of a see-saw. In any case if it still remains a dream then perhaps one or the other of the two has to be given the upper hand. But perhpas not. I’d appreciate it very much if you could let me know what you know and think about the American Dream. M. Thanks! -Mano-

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