I'm still smiling over the exciting election last night! The sudden countdown to the West Coast states' poll closing followed by an unexpected projection that Obama had won the presidency was like the giant orb dropping at Times Square on New Year's Eve. My daughter and I clapped and cheered in our living room last night, surrounded by silent neighbors here in Phoenix, Arizona: McCain Country.
Congratulations to all of my friends who worked so hard to get Obama elected. Even though we did not back the same candidate, I hope you will allow me to bask in your triumph. After all, I was a Democrat for most of my life before deciding to go Green. Voting Green this election was a personal triumph for me and my own contribution to political diversity but last night I celebrated a different sort of diversity along with the nation and the world. My heart was jubilant at seeing our first African American president-elect and at the seats the Democrats gained in the house and senate. I was proud of John McCain, whose concession speech was gracious and upbeat. And when Obama spoke about being a president for all of us, I allowed myself to hope that he wasn't just speaking to the far right but to the far left as well.
It wasn't all good news. The right to a legal gay marriage was denied or lost in some states, including California. But after witnessing Obama's impressive victory, I can't help but be hopeful that these are temporary setbacks and that tenacity and tolerance will triumph in the end. President Obama has inspired me to dream of a day when Gay, Lesbian and Transgender couples will once again be able to say "I Do." After all, it wasn't so very long ago that the idea of an African American being elected president was almost unimaginable. Let's all join in the hope that some day soon all Americans will enjoy equal rights under the law and we will live in a country free from discrimination.