Victory in the 2008 Election: Reaction to Barack Obama'a Win
Previously published on November 18, 2008
Although the 2008 struggle to take the White House felt like a never ending campaign for change from the disastrous policies espoused by the final installment of the Bush dynasty, supporters of Barack Obama took an expected, yet surprising, victory by a wide majority. The reaction to the young Illinois Senator defeating the Republican challenger John McCain was both powerful and inspiring.
With minorities and the youth celebrating the election of someone who is more likely to represent their interests, the world cheered on the first Africa American President of the United States of America. Since that fateful night, Obama has quickly moved to damper expectations and has established himself as a President for all.
As the world hungrily celebrated the election of Barack Obama, a sense of renewed optimism and patriotism filled the air. On election night, Americans were privileged to the rare sight of communities around the world hoisting the Star Spangled Banner out of hope instead of torching our most visible symbol out of anger.
While the excitement will likely diminish once the new President begins to demand greater commitment from the international community in the fight against terrorism and other global issues, this support provides the opportunity to rejuvenate America's image as the benevolent empire and inspire generations of Americans to believe in our political system once again.
Patriotism in a democracy is not necessarily praising and honoring a Country, but rather, debating the policies of our leaders and supporting the political process. In short, American patriotism revolves around the people's participation in government while it requires the people to seek out the best possible leaders and answer the needs of their communities. For too long, many Americans have felt their leaders have failed to adequately address their views and interests; thus, they have lost their ability to believe in government.
Through his bipartisan formation of policy throughout and after the campaign, as well his ability to simply listen, Barack Obama has allowed people to believe their voices can be heard, so they can have faith in the democratic process once again, something pivotal to the success of young and minority Americans.
November 4th, 2008 was a night marked with an emotional outburst by a vast number of people. Despite the fact the campaign never truly revolved around the issue of race, minorities zealously celebrated the election of the first African American President, because it affirmed their social equality and dispelled the proclamation, "a black man can be anything but President."
Meanwhile, young Americans finally have a President who represents a shift in national power from the older generations to the younger generations. With the inspirational power of Martin Luther King Jr. and the political skill of John F. Kennedy, Barack Obama has the ability to uplift those marginalized by the political process and renew people's faith in America.