It's taken me over 24 hours to try to digest yesterday's many moments in history.
I woke up before 6:00 A.M., just so I could see all the "before-Inauguration" stuff. I began tearing-up as then-President-Elect Obama and wife Michelle stepped out of The Blair House to head to St. John's (the "Presidents' Church", so dubbed as every President has visited, or become a weekly member of the Episcopal church located one block from The White House). I burst into tears as I witnessed the often-forgotten Peacemaker of the South, Jimmy Carter, step out with wife Rosalynn, to enter the area where the oaths of office would be taken. I sat on my bed, remembering what Carter has spoken about so wisely, and so well--the segregationist southern Georgia that he grew up in. How he never understood why some people did not "approve" of his best friend, a young black man he met in his youth, and maintained a friendship with, all their lives. I found myself wondering what Jimmy Carter was thinking as he walked the long hallway, remembering his youth, his strict Baptist neighbors, his fellow-farmers. Carter's most recent book (about Peace) was released yesterday, and I feel certain he planned it that way.
After a few more moments, I was able to contain myself until the new President Barack Obama(how I adore saying this:"President Obama"!!)spoke of how his own father, less than 60 years ago, could not have eaten in the restaurants that dot D.C. ...When President Obama spoke directly to Muslim nations(the word "Muslim" has never been spoken in any Inaugural address, in the history of the United States), offering mutual respect, and offering a new day....and then later, in speaking to anyone who would wish harm on us, about the United States' willingness to "Lend a hand, if you will unclench your fist...", I cried again. Here is a man willing to actually WALK THE WALK, OF PEACE. OF NEGOTIATION. OF DIPLOMACY.
How incredibly fortunate we are to have a THINKER--a man who actually considers the consequences of every action, indeed, of his words--before speaking, or acting.
I am guessing anything I might have to say about this beautiful, incredible day that was yesterday--January 20th, 2009--has already been said. With that in mind, I'm headed to all my fav blogs, and to Salon.com, and "Open Salon", a feature there(look for a blog I write over there!), to see if anyone has any new perspectives on The Inauguration, and President Barack Obama.
The joy is still streaming down my face. I think I'm feeling a bit corny, a bit romantic in my feelings for this country--and even for the government. I'll be putting my American flag out again(I put it away just before we invaded Iraq, as it felt "wrong" to have a flag out--it made me feel like a bully----wearing the gang's colors). The American flag is going to hang outside my house, and from now on, I 'll probably cry when I look at it. But not for the reasons it made me cry, the past several years.