Times, they are a changin’. My own feelings on this sui generis day, when on a day commemmorating the 80th birthday (plus four days or so) of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., coming as it does the day before the inauguration of our first African American President, Barack Hussein Obama (and yes, he’ll be using all three names) are… sui generis. In fact, I find it hard to characterize them… I am excited, to be sure… I expressed my support for Mr. Obama on this blog fairly early on (albeit still in calendar ’08), but certainly while it was still “a contest”. And I did the precious little I could to assist with his candidacy. And certainly, I support his policies, which I hope will be as bold and soaring as his rhetoric will be, rather than as cautious and “prudent” as the man himself has been. (We’ll probably get somewhere between the two, which, with luck, will be what we need.)
As I look back to “the Mesozoic” era of my life, when, had I had so much as a lengthy conversation with the then college junior and senior during our two shared undergraduate years as political science majors at Columbia, Barack (or was it still Barry?) Obama, perhaps his life, or mine, would have come out differently… and who’s to say… we’d have a different outcome… President Talking Dog? No, not a chance. I didn’t have the confidence (the one thing I remember about the young Mr. Obama, if I remember accurately, was his confidence), nor did I have the ambition, nor the vision to see the path chosen by Mr. Obama. I’m glad we do have someone with confidence based on reality… the genuine confidence of someone who can back it up, and right now. I will say that I’m glad I didn’t say something to the young Mr. Obama that might have set his life down a different road! I wouldn’t want that responsibility!
One cannot reasonably predict the next four, or eight years, either. Well… who knows? If we have any significant fraction of the “change” we have been promised, and the enthusiasm out there for Mr. Obama is even remotely justified, then these will be heady times indeed, and a rather dark (IMHO, the darkest and most backward looking ever) period in American history will be replaced with one of the lightest and most forward looking as we overcome the immense challenges laid before us. One man had a dream. Maybe another man will be up to the job of implementing that dream. And that dream can become a reality.