On Tuesday, America once again showed its true colors. For the first time in our history, a man who is half African and half Anglo-Saxon was elected by the populus to steer the helm of the most powerful democracy in the world. For me, Barack Obama is much like Tiger Woods in that he comes from a varied background that provides for an open mind from all groups of people. While I do not agree with the fiscal policies of “spreading the wealth” and “universal health care”, I find myself slightly excited about the possibilities and infusion of youth into our government.
As I traveled among the unwashed masses on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, I couldn’t help but be struck by all of the different people that touch elbows through our airports each day. It really is a microcosm of the world and for the most part runs very smoothly. Just like society as a whole, there are people of every walk of life, nationality, religon and color traveling on business and for pleasure. There are the young, the old, the very thin and the overly large, men and women. While for the most part politeness and tolerance paves the way, there are also the occaisional assholes.
I have to say that in my travels, I have been met by multi-cultural politeness and respect. People generally want to help each other — lift bags into the overhead, share a newspaper, open a door, say thank you, etc. All of this strikes me as very much in line with the new “change” for our country. First, Mr. Obama will soon be President Obama — President of the United States and therefore, everyone under that banner. The electorate spoke and now it is time for us to unify to support our President and work to improve our economy, hold off our enemies and create a better place for our children and grandchildren. Time will be the ultimate judge of success in policies or not and for now, collaboration will be key.
Conversely, the example of the heinousness of McCain aides who are now throwing Sarah Palin to the wolves should NOT be the standard. While Sarah Palin could certaintly be accused of lack of experience and ultra-conservativeness, I find the back-biting by these men to cover their own ineptness appalling. While Sarah Paling may not be the ideal for all women to support (just as Hillary was not), these men are damaging the possibilities for other women to step up and become a larger part of the governmental process at the highest levels. I mean, who wants to be persecuted in such a way as this woman has been?
I’ve been watching Mad Men and have had a few good laughs about the treatment of women and how much things have changed in the last 45 years. But, as I sit writing this waiting to present to a room full of 50 year old white men in top positions at a large corporation, I’m wondering just how low the glass ceiling really is. Are we let in just enough to get the work done, yet become the scapegoat when things go wrong? Barack Obama was carried into office by those who wanted to see change and embrace a chance for something new. Perhaps women can join together to support each other for the same type of change.
I sincerely hope that Mr. Obama incorporates all tides from the sea of humanity. As his crowd in Grant Park reflected on Tuesday night, we are a diverse group with all kinds of experience and ideas that can be brought to the table. I’m hopeful that we will see a spirit of cooperation and inclusion and that perhaps we will have a day when there are no ceilings for anyone. As long as I’m not over-taxed or my freedoms restricted or my opportunities limited or we don’t cower against terror, President Obama will have my full support.
Everyday People, Sly & The Family Stone