“Not in my lifetime.” That is what an older black man said when he saw John McCain concede to Barack Obama this evening. Watching the news, many Black men and women are crying and shaking their heads in disbelief. Black husbands are kissing their black wives and songs are being sung in the streets.
I am not sure even Barack Obama can believe what he is experiencing. He will be the 44th President and the first black President of the United States. With that, this honor and position will be very difficult for Barack Obama. He will be tried and tested by both the Democrats and the Republicans – both the Senate and the House. All eyes will look to him as a leader of a world power.
In some respects, I am extremely happy. There have been a lot of firsts for black people that are historic and important to our history. Jackie Robinson was the first black baseball player in the major league. Ella Fitzgerald was the first black woman to win a Grammy Award in 1958. Nat King Cole was the first black man to be a Network television show host in 1956 – Oprah Winfrey was the first black woman television host in 1986. Willie Thrower was the first black NFL player to hold the position as a quarterback in 1953, and the first black Miss America was none other than Vanessa Williams in 1984. Since her reign, three other black women have held that honor. Tonight, another historic black moment has been witnessed. Barack Obama will fill the highest office of President. I can only imagine why that guy – the older black man – responded, “Not in my lifetime.” Maybe he has seen a lot of hate and struggle as a young black man. Perhaps memories of the Black Panther group, Malcolm X and signs that said, “Whites only” still burn deep into his mind and his heart.
With all of that said, I will be praying for Barack Obama and this nation. Barack has very little experience. In fact, he has all of 2 ½ years of experience. He has also made a lot of promises to the American people that I find to be difficult to keep. He has promised healthcare to the masses, to end the war in Iraq, bring our troops home to reunite with their families, to stabilize the US economy, and to provide the kind of change the American people have been waiting for. For Barack Obama, it seems that many hours of his Presidential elect period will be spent “learning the ropes” of running a country of 300 million people and learning what it takes to be a one-of-a-kind ambassador of the American people to the world. I can honestly say without a burden of conscience that I am not jealous of Barack Obama. The position of president, despite all the jokes made by comedians and analysts, is very difficult on the individual and on the individual’s family.
In closing, I want to ask the American people – black or white, male or female, young or old, Republican or Democrat – to pray for Barack Obama and the leadership and the government of the United States of America. I hope you will join me in prayer for all the “change” we are going to experience – both the good and the bad – that ultimately comes with a new face in the oval office. I firmly believe that God’s sovereign hand is upon His people. I truly believe that God love us individually and corporately. I know God is in control over all things. Let us not waste anytime in taking the Presidential elect to prayer before the throne of God. Pray for his family. Pray for his safety. Pray for his leadership and his plans. Let us be a people of prayer that really cares about what’s going on here in the United States and around the world and how those we have put in those positions act and lead.
P.S. For those who did not vote, shame on you. Please do not sit in front of your TV’s and complain about an action taken by the President or run your mouth about how you don’t agree with something. You didn’t vote. Voting is a right we have been given in the United States. There is this thing called The Constitution of the United States that gave you that right. There was an Amendment that was added so that those of color could vote as well. Black, White, Asian, or whatever colors your skin might be: You could have voted. You could have made your voice heard. If you find yourself getting upset about something that happened, perhaps you will take a moment and get on the ballet for the next election. For now though, the polls are closed, the votes are in, and we will have a new President on January 20th, 2009. His name is Barack Obama. God bless America.