Tuesday, November 04, 2008
I'm off to vote for Barak Obama. It's history today in my conflicted country where race, gender, age, background, disability, who your parents are still matters with a deep, mistrust of anyone "different". I wanted to be voting for Hillary Clinton, a woman of my age and politics. But, I will vote whole-heartedly for Barak Obama, an African-American man.
I have been moved by the stories and interviews with black Americans, who say they never expected to vote for an African-American presidential candidate in their lifetimes. The oldest have ties to grandfathers, great-mothers who lived and died as slaves. We met people in Kenya last year who were proud of this man who had ties to the Luo tribe.
It's what our world should be -- meeting its promises to all peoples.
I am reading E.L. Doctorow's THE MARCH -- about Sherman's march across Georgia and up the Carolinas. It's a brilliant book that mixes history into stories that leave such a bitter taste of war and its aftermath. So, I read about our Civil War and its brutalities. I think about what happened after that War -- into Reconstruction, into the push west where the same warriors (like Sherman and Custer) turned their weapons onto Native Americans... where force, fear, humiliation, poverty, Manifest Destiny, the KKK, Jim Crow, lynchings, political cowards, and that endless racism gave one kind of people the perverted power to lord over others.
So, as I said, I am going to vote for Barak Obama and then, I will be present and active in this endless struggle for peace and dignity and human rights -- in a sustainable and healthy world.
And, if the old white men who have ravaged our people and resources think they can steal this election too, I'll be there on the streets, as we should have been in the year 2000, but weren't.
Posted by gretchen at 8:00 AM