Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The Best Birthday Present This Year?

Tomorrow (nov 5th) is my birthday and I have been praying that I won't open up my paper to read that McCain has won the election. The best birthday present I will get this year would be to read about an Obama victory.

Right now it's 9:00 PM, and I'm watching the projection on CNN as the polls start closing, and I'm starting to relax a bit that Obama will indeed win the day. Kay Hagan just beat Elizabeth Dole - yay! Democracy in action as people reject Dole's "godless" ad, which was completely reprehensible.

To say that I've been glued to all information on the American election for the past couple of months is a bit of an understatement. I feel quite desperate about things, and have been wondering why I've felt so strongly - especially since I'm Canadian.

Our Canadian election came and went in just 6 short weeks this fall. My candidate won in my area, but the Conservatives remained in power overall (though they did get hammered in Quebec over their "culture is only for the elite" line which was a sweet victory). Though I was disappointed, I wasn't crushed, and if Obama loses tomorrow, I will be crushed.

I think this is basically because I believe my life will be affected more by who becomes the next President of the United States, then by what Canadian party is in power. This is a strange kind of irony, but I believe it's true. Whether we like it or not, the US. has a huge effect on us here. To paraphrase Trudeau:

"Living next to to the US is like sleeping with an elephant. No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, one is affected by every twitch and grunt. "

Then when I was watching the 30 minute piece Obama put on the national networks this week, I realized that I have a lot in common with him, and maybe this is also why he really touches a cord for me.
  • I also have a mixed race background,

  • Was raised by a single mom,

  • Was incredibly close to my grandparents who were huge influences on me,

  • I know what it's like for people to look at you and assume you're from somewhere else,

  • I've also only met my father once, and feel that I've been shaped more by his absence than by his presence.

Finally, there is just so much that Obama stands for that I believe in, and a loss for him would in some way represent a loss of those ideals for me. Share the wealth - yes, I believe in that. Healthcare is a privilege, not a responsibility. Education for all. Equality for all. The list goes on and on...

I'm thinking that tomorrow will be a brighter day...

November 5th Update -my wish came true and the good guys won! What a great way to start the day!

*Obama image courtesy of Jennifer DeGuzman.

1 comment:

Dave said...

Happy Birthday Sweetie! (I thought my present for you was pretty nice too!)