I am soo glad this is over. Things were looking touch and go for a minute there but President Obama's incredible ground game held true and the polling held up and here we are. They mocked his community organizer background. Seems like that's the perfect skill set to have to win two terms.
Barack Obama had to win. He had no choice. A one term President is seen as a failure but the difference for Obama is that his one term wouldn't just be his personal failure. It would be interpreted as confirmation that a black man couldn't lead this country. That his winning in the first place was a fluke or affirmative action, the perception that the less qualified person got the position only because of the color of his skin. And when the next black democrat throws his or her hat into the ring and vies for the office the dog whistle line for the GOP would be "we tried this before and it didn't work out so well". A one term Obama Presidency would have put doubts in the heart of minority children and they may have thought maybe it was just luck, maybe I don't have a real shot at this.
There were a lot of headwinds Barack Obama had to fight to win this second term. An excruciatingly slow economic recovery, an recalcitrant and obstinate Republican dominated House of Representatives who may be just as obstructionist in the second term as they were in the first. Strife and war in the Middle East that's once more threatening to suck us into yet another military action. And through all of that Team Obama was able to cobble together a reelection campaign that performed nearly as well as the first time and re-energize their supporters.
I truly believe that when its all said and done generations a hundred years from now will look at the Obama Presidency and think..."wasn't so bad really, what was all the hubbub about?" (yes the word hubbub will still be in use). And personally for me, this election win brings great relief. From this point on I will never get this emotionally involved in politics and a candidate on the same level that I felt with this President. I can't, its too draining. The only other time I got this attached to something that I wasn't related to or getting paid for was when I was kid and was rooting for the Philadelphia 76ers back in the early 80s before they finally won the NBA championship in '83. I remember watching the 1982 NBA Finals and crying my eyes out as the Sixers lost to the Lakers in a exhausting six game series. This is after the Sixers had been to the Finals a couple of times and lost each time before. I swore I'd never get that involved in a game after that. It was just too emotionally draining.
I got that same feeling during this campaign, particularly after Obama lost the first debate. That slipping away feeling began to creep in. But the difference this time was this wasn't a sports event, this was history. The events we're living will shape the generations of people and most directly Black people in American from now on. Its one thing to tell a child he or she can be anything they want and its another for them to see a living example of it. And President Obama is our living example that anything is possible.