Wednesday, November 5, 2008

American Dream

Yesterday, on 4th of November 2008, Americans have chosen their next, 44th, president. To relief and happiness of many, a democratic candidate, Barack Obama, was elected for this important position. Election of Barack Obama has great symbolic (and historic) value as he happens to be an African-American, the first one ever to hold a such prominent function in the US.

The story of Barack Obama's election is like fulfillment of "American Dream". Obama realizes it well himself, as he started his victory speech with words: "If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer."

I listened to Obama's (and McCain's) speeches with thousands of other San Franciscans at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and it was definitely a very moving experience. Everybody had tears in their eyes and people were kissing and hugging each other. History was being made just in front of our eyes.

Obama's victory was great, but it felt bitter-sweet to me. I hoped that since Americans proved to be mature enough to elect a black president, they would be also mature enough not to take away rights from the same-sex couples to get married. Even in a such (supposedly) progressive state as California, 52% of people supported an addition to Californian constitution that would effectively delegalize marriages between gay couples (link). Why so many people are against it, is beyond my comprehension.

Photos taken yesterday during the election party at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco: