This has been an interesting election season. Lots of stupid stuff, tons of really heartbreaking moments. Living in Colorado, it has been interesting. There has been a heavy dose of candidate attention especially from the Obama campaign. The picture in the Sunday edition of the Pueblo Chieftain was amazing.
For me, this election was about the local issues as much as the Presidential election. Growing up with Martin Luther King, and in adulthood, Nelson Mandela, I have never been one to let the colour of someone’s skin be an issue. It’s the issues the candidates stand for that are important. I voted for Obama, because I feel he holds a clearer view of what this country needs in the next four years. Something that was made more clear to me as I spoke to Daniel this morning.
I was awoken at 8:45am by Daniel who was on his way to vote for the very first time. He was worried about choices. Obama, McCain, or no one. Should he vote, should he just vote for local issues. As he walked to the poles, we talked. I told him where I stood on local issues. What I was voting for, and who I was voting for. To me, party lines don’t mean much. It is the person who is important.
When he got nearer the poles, he said he understood which issues that hadn’t gotten national coverage were important. He was also still uncertain about who to vote for for President. He’d heard a lot of stuff from friends. Some of it good, some of it bad. Trying to explain dirty campaign tricks over a cell phone is difficult. Daniel is so “in the moment” that he doesn’t see the long view whereby people want to subvert the mind of the voter via misleading adverts and interviews. So, this made it difficult for him to understand what was truth and what was lies. I did my best to clarify some misconceptions. I told him that in the end, it is his choice. We ended the call and I called the high school to let him know that Daniel would be late because he was voting. Gee…. the secretary was fine with that!
About 30 minutes later, he called back. He’d voted for Obama. Not because I wanted him to, or that his grandma who urged him to register to vote wanted him to, but because when he thought about it, Obama was the right man. Obama and his campaign had made enough of an impact on an 18yo who normally thinks no farther than the next day. Gives me hope for a lot of things.
Now of course, we are watching the election information roll in. It’s 9:15pm, and Obama has 306 electoral college votes. What a moment in history.