Friday, October 17, 2008

44 years

I awoke at 5am this morning from a nightmare. I can't remember what the nightmare was about but in the 2 hours it took me to get back to sleep I couldn't stop thinking about the real nightmare we as a nation may face...4 more years of a Republican in office.

I know that Obama is up in the polls but this is doesn't mean the fight is over. I'm addicted to CNN and I keep hearing about all the issues arising as he rises in the polls. People may not come out on election day because they think he's got it "in the bag". Others are talking about the Bradley Effect, where people tell pollsters they are voting for him but when in the booth let their racism take over and vote for the white guy.

The latter of these issues bothers me more than you can imagine. I am simultaneously saddened and enraged that people in this day and age would really allow race to make their decision for them.

The wife has been out of town for two weeks so I've been watching a lot of movies that she would normally object to based on subtitles or sad content. A couple of nights ago I watched Mississippi Burning which for those who haven't seen is based on the true story of 3 civil rights workers being killed in Jessup County Mississippi during the summer of 1964. 2 of these men were white and the FBI was sent to investigate. It is a horrifyingly wonderful portrayal of the hate and violence that saturated the south at that time. It rips my heart in two every single time I watch it.

Towards the end of the film as I was wiping away tears I began to think of how recent in history this really was...just 44 years ago we were drinking out of separate water fountains and violence against African Americans was not only tolerated but even encouraged. 44 years later and we now have an extremely viable Presidential candidate that just happens to be African American.

That is an amazing feat in a relatively short amount of time. But every single time I see videos of people slinging racial slurs and spewing hate because of the color of Obama's skin I am reminded of just how far we have left to go.

I pray every night that the state of this country will force people to see past their bigotry and hate. I truly can't imagine anything making me more proud of my country and sadly that is something I haven't felt for a long time.

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