Friday, November 07, 2008
I was asking myself, did I cry when Nelson Mandela got elected President of South- Africa? I did not. I was very touched, moved and proud. This great man has overcome a lot and became the first black president of the democratic South Africa. But tears did flow last Wednesday 5.00 AM (Netherlands time, a night without sleep) when CNN announced Obama President Elected and I saw Rev. Jesse Jackson in tears. When people say ' we have come a long way', he knows what they' re talking about. We all cried. We, not only black people in this world.
I think there are a lot of differences between Mandela's day and Obama' s election. But maybe the most personal one for me is the fact that I am also a black man from the Americas (The Caribbean in my case). Communities which had experienced colonialism (in one from or the other), slavery, racism and other ways of oppression. Barack Obama could have been me, my nephew, our children.
I cried because I was touched, thinking about our whole history, struggles and pain. Mister Obama applied and got ne job, President of the United States. But by becoming that, he served the whole world as a new source of inspiration. YES WE CAN.
And people, please take time to listen to the way he thinks about leadership, politics and the world.