Thursday, January 15, 2009

Race in the Election

The UltraViolet December 2008

Setting aside your political beliefs and however you may feel about the outcome of this election, when you look at it from a diversity standpoint, there is definitely something to be proud of and excited about.

Barack Obama, an African- American man and the democratic candidate, ran against John McCain, a Caucasian man and the republican candidate. As I am sure you already know, my fellow students, this is a huge deal.

Although I and most of you reading this were not alive during the Civil Rights Movement, we need to remember that it was not long ago that many Americans were fighting for rights which seem somewhat trivial to us now. Only fifty years ago, Obama and McCain would not even have been able to drink from the same water fountain without serious consequences.

Despite the time it has taken us to do it, America has taken a huge step in diversifying our nation and, more specifically, in diversifying our government. Whether you are white, black, Hispanic, or any other race, Americans are starting to feel good about the steps we are taking towards creating a more inclusive country.

In Marlborough’s African-American Culture Club AACE (shameless plug: You guys should come Friday at lunch in C220 it’s really fun!), we have made it a part of our club’s weekly discussions leading up to the election to set aside some time to talk about this great African- American man’s achievement and about how things are playing out. It is not the young Democrats
club or the young Republican’s club so I can’t speak for everyone in the club’s political views, but I’m sure I can speak for the majority of the club when I say this election has generated a general sense of pride.

Just like many other African-American heroes, Obama has heightened the status of African- Americans across the country. By making it this far in the election (keep in mind I am writing this not knowing the outcome), he has already done something that no other African- American has ever done.

So, to me, it doesn’t necessarily matter if the “Bradley effect” has played a role in this election. The way I see it, Obama has already started to pave a new road for minorities and for all Americans.

-Arielle ‘09

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