Wednesday, November 05, 2008

more vision, less perishing?

Look, as I said before, I'm not sure how much I even believe in this stuff. But I went home after the spirituality and sexuality performance, and I watched the returns with my friends and housemates.

When they called Illinois, I thought about my theology prof, an old-school southern liberationist, who told me months ago that an Obama win, for him, having grown up in the Jim Crow south, "would be like redemption."

When they called Pennsylvania, I thought about my grandma, eighty-six years old, who broke her arm a couple weeks ago, but who got a ride with her son to the polls. She was not going to miss it.

And when they called Ohio, I thought about Jesse Stinebring, who led the Obama campaign in Oberlin. He ran it out of his house for the last ten days. Sending volunteers out to cover that whole part of the state. Making calls and teaching people how to knock on doors. I went and knocked on some doors when I was in Ohio over the weekend, more out of a commitment to Jesse than a commitment to Obama. Jesse's seventeen.

And you know, when the called California, I thought it was a good sign for my sisters and brothers in California seeking to retain their constitutional freedom to marry. (Now, that looks unlikely.)

And yes, I'll admit, when they called Colorado, I may have shouted "Focus on this family!" and given a terrorist fist bump to my married lesbian couple friends.

And when they called the whole damn thing, I didn't know what to do. I screamed and shouted, and the thirty people in the co-op basement flooded into our front yard, chanting and singing and weeping. When I walked Rachael home after the speech, everyone on the sidewalk was happy. "Barack Obama!" called a woman from her front porch. "Yes we can!" we called back.

I believe that we are the ones we've been waiting for. I don't believe anyone can ride into Washington and save us. I believe in Jesus Christ for president (in the manner of Woody Guthrie) and everyone else is just going to be a better or worse commander of the empire.

But to have a president who's less Constantine and more Saul Alinsky?

After the speech, April went and got the flag. It had been leaning against the wall by the free box for some months. I don't know why we didn't give it away before now; somebody had ended up with it after an immigration rights rally. But we had it, and April took it outside, and set it up on the front porch. I watched.

Vamos a ver.

1 comment:

Hannah said...

You know, Wednesday morning I said the Pledge of Allegience with my kids at school (you know, I've gotta do it to set the example but it's always been half-hearted and resentful), and it was the first time, the first time ever in my life, that I was proud of my country. I've been grateful before, living abroad, of all we have (had) here, but now I can look at the American flag and feel like finally, finally, we've done something to be proud of.