Sunday, November 9, 2008

Significance of the Election

Much has been written over the last few days about the enormous significance of last Tuesday's election. Of all the pieces I've read, the one I enjoyed the most was a post by Judith Warner in her NY Times blog. In this she notes that despite the enormity of what just happened, it is difficult for our young children to truly appreciate what has been accomplished. She points to this wonderful photograph that ran in the Times that illustrates this beautifully:

In it, a black mother and daughter sit on the floor of a church in Harlem. The mother, Latrice Barnes, having heard of Obama’s victory, is doubled up in tears; her daughter, Jasmine, is reaching a tentative hand up to soothe her. To me, she looks like the future, reaching out to heal the past.
For me, this will be the enduring memory of election night 2008: One generation released its grief. The next looked up confusedly, eager to please and yet unable to comprehend just what the tears were about.

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