Barack and Sasha Obama, Abu Aardvark and daughter: Yes We Can
We did it. America did it. A new dawn for American leadership has indeed arrived. I've devoted hundreds of hours to the Obama campaign since May 2007, working on Iraq and the Middle East - one of the reasons, obviously, why blogging here has slowed down so much. But this isn't the time for talking about that. This was never about me. Today is for America and for the world.
When they called the election, a room full of friends from the campaign and others who I had just met exploded in joy and tears. Once the reality of it settled in, my thoughts turned immediately to my former Williams College students, Ari and Kaveri and Shomik and so many more, who had put their all into the campaign - canvassing, phone-banking, fund-raising, campaigning, organizing - and saw their faith and passion rewarded.
To my parents, proudly backing Barack Obama in the heart of Pennsylvania's God country.
To my sister, bravely displaying an Obama sign in deepest red Tennessee.
To my grandfather in Florida, at ground zero of the whispering campaigns and smears, who nevertheless for the first time in his 92 years voted for a Democrat.
To my daughter Sophia and Imani, her African-American best friend, whose delerious ObamaMama dance at the end of the primaries had pointed the way to a brighter future. (And to the exhausted ObamaMama in question, who was home but singularly failing to sleep amidst the excitement and anxiety.)
And to America, where so many people came together and rejected the false choices, the vile propaganda and whispering campaigns, the cynically cultivated stupidity, the recklessly stoked fear and hate. I've never been prouder to be an American.
They said this day would never come. It did. The hard work only begins now, and nothing will come easily. But yesterday is a day to relish and to remember forever.