My friends know I’m pretty much obsessed with Bruce Springsteen. Lindi and I fell in love dancing to his music, went to
Juanita Brown, Katrina Browne and I joined with Maryland Public Television and the
Though I’ve never been so close to Bruce without seeing him play, I didn’t actually miss the concert. I was right where I wanted to be: with people interested in addressing the legacy of slavery that continues to haunt our nation today. A long, bumpy, curvy road lies ahead on the road to ending racism. That people seem more interested and engaged in traveling that road together these days is inspiring.
Today is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day and I’m spending it with friends in
As I walked from the State Center Metro Station to Penn Station in downtown
Is it the election of Obama? Absolutely it is. There is a giddy, hopeful, joyfulness in the air everywhere I’ve been this week. Here in the Baltimore/DC area there are Obama hats, buttons, shirts, and jackets everywhere. And what I feel more than anything is that this election is about more than the election of a black man to our nation’s highest office. It’s about more than Barack Obama. It’s about the fact that enough of “we the people” voted for him. “We the people” want to change. We want something different even if we don’t all agree what it is we’re hoping for. Part of it is that we want to do something about the horrific aspects of our nation’s history that continue to plague us.
Obama spoke of “change” and “hope” and inspired a nation. At one point–with all the sniping taking place in the media–it felt to me like “change” and “hope” became campaign slogans for awhile. Now that we are about to witness Obama’s inauguration it feels like “change” and “hope” once again take their proper place as real, palpable aspirations.
Bruce and Pete and others stood in front of Abraham Lincoln yesterday singing “This Land is Your Land” to hundreds of thousands who gathered in the mall while Juanita, Katrina, and I met with a far smaller crowd in
“…as I stand here today, what gives me the greatest hope of all is not the stone and marble that surrounds us today, but what fills the spaces in between. It is you — Americans of every race and region and station who came here because you believe in what this country can be and because you want to help us get there.”
Tomorrow Barack will become President Obama at the opposite end of the mall. He will face Abraham Lincoln as he places his hand on our 16th president’s bible and swears to uphold the constitution that was written by men who enslaved people of color.
My, oh my, what we have just done…