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Gerry B, Alpharetta, GA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? This morning, I took out and held my copy of Strength to Love by Dr. King. It was a copy that had actually belonged to him, and has notes in the margins penned in his own hand, and some folded sheets of Ebenezer Baptist Church stationery with his handwritten sermon on them. It was given to me by Hosea Williams in 1968, when I was working as a volunteer for SCLC down on Auburn Ave. As I held it, I cried at the overwhelming importance of what occurred last night. I thanked God for the grace given to this nation to respond to the challenge and the opportunity we were given in this election. I remembered many things: April, 1968, at 3:00 am, outside Sisters Chapel at Spellman College on the AU Campus, where Dr. King was lying in State, I was standing in a long line of mourners all waiting respectfully in the chill night air, speaking in hushed tones, or not at all, to view his body and pay our respects No one was impatient, and when we each had our turn to stand before his casket, no one felt pressed to hurry past. I remember taking a few moments in reflection and prayer there, with tears streaming down my face, feeling an intense commitment in my heart to continue what he had given his life trying to accomplish. I was 20 years old at the time, just opening the wrapping on the gift that was to be my life. Now, at 61, I am still unwrapping that gift. Last night was so major for me. There have been so few elections in my life in which I have actually voted for the winner! I have often felt so isolated, out of step with those around me, but yet so sure that the path I was on was the only one that I could walk with conscience. In 2006, I was encouraged by the election results. Last night, I was overwhelmed with joy and hope, gratitude and belief in humanity. I'd like to bottle those feelings and be able to take a swig every now and then just to refresh my soul. I have felt almost euphoric all day, in a very spiritual way. I have a strong belief that this man with the unusual name is living his destiny, and affecting ours in a most profound way, for the good of all. I appreciate all of you, and the ones coming behind you, for living the dream we dreamed, for coming from love and not fear, and for being a part of the new majority in this country. Hip Hip Hooray!!!!!! Gerry Burge
What should we do next? Form task groups to offer assistance on various areas of the agenda.
Vera H, Woodside, NY
What does Obama's victory mean to you? What emerged from the voting booths across America on November 4th, 2008 was not only a glimmer of hope for a brighter future but also a very simple truth - the knowledge that fair and just leadership is essential to arresting our country's decline. Human rights, health care, education, international affairs - just some of the complex issues our complex culturally and economically diverse nation faces. Our country needs and deserves a complex, intelligent, humane, articulate and diplomatic leader - President Elect Obama has these essential leadership qualities. On Wednesday when I woke my daughter to help her prepare for school I was excited to tell her the election news. For the first time in my politically aware life I was proud to be an American and grateful to be apart of the new American dream! On Wednesday, we witnessed history together as a family, community, and country. President Obama, with the help of his worthy Vice President and Administration, will guide us out of our backyards and off our front stoops - into the global village of the 21st century!
What should we do next? Be responsible US and World citizens, stay politically informed and involved. Be willing to make sacrifices to end the war, and ween ourselves off fossil fuels for the sake of the next generations of Americans and the environment. Hold together and work together to elevate our nation.
Jan W, Culver City, CA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? I keep crying – joy tears. The history/pattern of a select elite putting ‘their chosen guy’ in office has been broken by an ocean of regular loving people from all over the world. And we chose a brilliant, kind, wise black man. WOW This is also a victory for American CULTURE. Think about it, all the songs, dances, videos, paintings, performances that artists were inspired to make to help win this election. It's a sign of a healthy society when the artists spontaneously direct their creativity towards a positive outcome instead of having to play the difficult role of opposing the direction our society is headed in.
What should we do next? We must tackle global warming first - above all else. Every single war being fought around the globe is rooted in the fear of decreasing resources and the need to control what is left. Stopping global warming and replacing it with a vision of a sustainable future that is socially just and spiritually fulfilling for All is a task that benefits every single living being on the planet Imagine all the energy going to fight all these wars redirected towards uniting around this larger common good. This campaign has shown us the positive power the collective already has. Now we need to put it to use for the benefit of our Earth, our home.
Paula D, Red Oak, TX
What does Obama's victory mean to you? I tossed in my meager donations and the small amount of time that I could spare, and it was matched and multiplied so many times by black and white and brown and yellow (just like the old Sunday School Song) young and old. It feels like a wonderful Victory for Good and Right and all the people that believe that this vision is still attainable.
What should we do next? Stay strong with courage to insist that our vision is fullfilled...and be willing to help in whatever way each can...just like we did during the campaign.
Jenny S, Washington, DC
What does Obama's victory mean to you? Signed, sealed, DELIVERED! I'm proud of my country, proud of the message it sends to the world, and hopeful for change. I was inspired by the other volunteers I met working on the campaign and by how much Obama's campaign inspired friends of mine I never expected to get involved to really get engaged. This is an amazing place, and so many people have so much to give back--I hope the positive energy everyone has poured into the campaign only grows stronger as we roll up our sleeves and get to work on cleaning up after the last eight years. Yes we can!
What should we do next? Fix the health care system!
Artemis R, Oakland, CA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? Like everyone I know, I am overwhelmed with joy and gratitude for the immense blessing of this moment. For the first time in my life, I am truly and deeply inspired by the person we have chosen to lead us forward, a man of grace and grit, intelligence, honor and integrity. Now I know - ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE! Yes we did and YES we can!!!
What should we do next? Dig in and participate, every way we can - Obama has what it takes to steer this ship in the right direction, but it will take all hands on deck - every one of us - to get us to that bright tomorrow we're all dreaming of.
Porsha V, Spuyten Duyvil, NY
What does Obama's victory mean to you? I come from a community where there is little hope of doing anything better than "just getting by". Today, when I look my clients in the face an tell them-they can do anything they put thier minds to, I am no longer lying. There will always be hurdles to climb. But atleast I can get them out there to run in the race. I am forever greatful to Obama for his bravery. They say you cant changed what's in people's minds and Obama did just that!
What should we do next? Support him!
Sandra S, Upper Marlboro, MD
What does Obama's victory mean to you? Finally America reconizes that we are one people, no matter what color our skin may be. We all have the same color blood beneath the colors. I am black, my grand children are bi racial (hispanic and caucasion). They will grow up knowing it does not matter, but, character matters.
What should we do next? Contine to be cut the national debt by eliminating our credit cards. Start savings accounts and save for the things we need. By only what we can afford.
Andreana A, Vancouver, WA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? From the beginning of my knowledge of Barack Obama I felt hope. Hope for a better America, hope for my children, hope for peace in the world. For the first time, I had signs in my yard and bumper stickers on my car. I wore 'mens type' T-shirts and didn't care lol! I am so thankful Barack Obama is my president.
What should we do next? Be nice to one another. Be patient with one another. Smile. Laugh. Help the elderly. Teach the children. Hug. Touch. VOLUNTEER in your communities. Relish the thought of our future.
Barbara F, Honolulu, HI
What does Obama's victory mean to you? I attended college in Elmhurt Illinois from 1964-68. Elmhurst would not allow a black person in the city(16 miles NW of Chicago after dark, so we protested. I went to Alabama in the Spring of 1965 and joined the Selma march into the capital. The remaining years hav all been walking, running living for November 4 and Obama's election. We have all finally joined humanity
What should we do next? Stay involved, get involved. Talk to your Congressional Delegation. Make sure they know your name, be positive and help others find out that belonging is the most important gift wwe can give each other.
A P, Glen Allen, VA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? Yes, we DID! Barack Obama President Elect 2008! To put this in perspective - I was born during the Civil Rights Movement and the first man landed on the moon on my first birthday, July 20th, 1969. In my 40th year – I am blessed to be afforded the opportunity to witness the first African-American become the president elect 2008. YES WE DID! Those who truly know me, know I began supporting Barack following the 2004 DNP convention. However, a few weeks ago – on October 22, 2008 - my support for him advanced to a new level when I decided to take my entire family to Obama’s rally here in Richmond. With kids in tow...we waited outside for more than 2-hours, but the rally was priceless. Honestly – I can not express the memories it provided nor the inspiration it provided to my husband to finally acquire citizenship. Beyond that experience – involving myself in many aspects of this campaign...donating money to the campaign, volunteering time to call potential voters, logging data, and preparing canvassing materials...elevated my support even more. I can honestly say the VICTORY in Virginia is sweeter. In the end – I know our country still have many challenges to conquer, but we have crossed a major hurdle today. I know that I chose HOPE over FEAR to CHANGE this country and this world!! I know that I would stand in line another two hours to see Obama, or another 45minutes to cast my vote for these sort of historic results – A NEW AMERICA for my children. Truly – I know many have awaited this moment longer than I and I wish I could share it with my grandmother. She - like Barack’s grandmother - instilled the urgency and importance of a good education. With that education – I have come to know that as an educator, as a woman, and most importantly – as a parent the possibility of making the IMPOSSIBLE - POSSIBLE restores my faith in the belief.....IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING! It restores my faith in knowing that Rosa sat so Martin could walk...Martin walked so Obama could run...Obama ran so children of the future can FLY to new heights! GEAUX BARACK OBAMA 2008! AKPerera
What should we do next? UNIFY!
Juanita G, Novato, CA
What does Obama's victory mean to you? 40 years ago, when I was 18, and Martin Luther King was killed and Bobby and Jack Kennedy were both killed, I stopped caring about politics. I care again, and my personal cynisim has been replaced by hope and enthusiasm. the racist glass ceiling has been shattered, the next civil rights issue to conquer is gay rights...hope, yes hope.
What should we do next? Fight for the civil rights for gays
Fania S, Greenacres, FL
What does Obama's victory mean to you? ¡§On the Morning of Obama¡¨ I felt drunk. Not drunk from fine wine, But drunk from the power of new possibilities Drunk, under the spirit of change¡K Change, a seed that was left on the side of the road, Stale by the harsh American sun But today, on the morning of Obama, I am that seed. I am revived! And on that moving, early morning of Obama, I heard drums And with my own feet, i danced And squeezed hope and joy the dirt I held my breath and sucked in every drop of freedom¡K To greatly multiply my own power right here on earth And carry more hope, more change, and more glory From the grand race that Obama ran. On the morning of Obama, ¡§Will I am¡¨ above and beyond. Poem by fania simon (Haitian ¡VAmerican Author and Activist) Also, in the famous words of President Obama, "let me be clear about one thing....¡¨ I, Fania Simon became a U.S Citizen to vote for Obama. Now, my voice is as big and powerful as President Obama ƒº YES I CAN! Thank you for everything.
What should we do next? We need to start diplomacy and arrange talking with enemies. We need forgiveness and we need to start fresh. It will not be easy but someone should make the first move. From that effort many other issues will fall into place! We have to make sure that nothing and nothing stands in the way of our president effort to restore truth and love for all Americans--even those who are praying for his fall. Let us start doing exactly what we (Obama) promise to do. Together we can take it one day at a time. Thanks Fania Simon
Marian T, Las Vegas, NV
What does Obama's victory mean to you? My father worked in law enforcement during the riots in 1968 in Chicago. He didn't get home for two days. I have lived thru martin Luther King, Jesse Jackson, always keeping hope for america. And now there is hope. Life in our nation now turns a page; it is a new day. With opportunity for all races, all people. My belief is that we will now move forward, as a people and a nation. The progress will be slow at first, but deliberate. It will be accomplished together. At 45, I saw a Black Man and A White Man hold hands and approach this new day together. I beautiful sight I never thought I would live to see. I am grateful that my parents were also alive to see this glorius day.
What should we do next? badn together, help our new president and cabinet use the force of three million online supporters to change America for the better-for everyone.
Aaron J, Lawrence, KS
What does Obama's victory mean to you? A new beginning, a chance to right a lot of wrongs... like ending then WARS, or fixing the economy, shift the focus of gov. spending on education and health care. I voted for Obama because I believe these are goals that are important not just to us but to him as well. I believe it also opens the doors for our first Native American or Hispanic leader.
What should we do next? make his job as easy as we possibly can... start working towards alternative fuel, volunteer at a school to help improve education, But most important of all we most come together as a nation and work for the greater good of humankind.