Today is most likely my proudest day as an American citizen. I can't recall a time when a large part of our citizenship stood behind a cause that I felt so passionate about. And I can't recall a time when tha American public so broadly and so vocally embraced progress. For hundreds of years, millions of men and women fought and died to establish equality among the races. The abhorrence that was slavery existed in this country a mere 150 years ago. The historic events in Selma, Montgomery and throughout the South, were only 40 or so years ago. Yet on this day, June 4th of 2008, one of two major political parties in this country has nominated an African-American man as its party's candidate for the highest office in perhaps the World.
As I stepped onto the bus this morning, I looked around and noticed the diversity among the fifty or so passengers. I then peered down to the front page of my newspaper and saw folks of all different races glowing as they reached to shake Senator Obama's hand. I felt overwhelmed with pride, hope, humility and harmony. For the first time in a long time, I felt like I belonged to something larger than anything I've ever known. I felt part of a cause. I felt as though things could get better. I felt as though we're all in this together. I thought of Martin Luther King Jr., Frederick Douglass, Stokely Carmichael, Muhammed Ali, Malcolm X, Charles Johnson, Ralph Ellison and Rosa Parks. And I thought of Barack Obama. And I thought of the nearly 20 million Americans who've exiting a polling place after casting their vote for him.
I felt it all. And midway through the day, I can't shake that feeling. Today I am proud of my country and the citizens who call it home. This is progress.