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Vincent S. Moore Presents:

A Mule And Forty Acres Of My Own: Fear And Loathing Leaves Chocolate City and Mr. Hope And Change And Wonder Goes To Washington

By the time this essay goes live on the web (hopefully), Barack Hussein Obama will have been sworn in as the 44th President of the United States.

As I said many times during 2008, wow.

I don’t believe I ever thought I would see such a thing in my lifetime as an African-American man being sworn into the highest, most powerful political office in this great land. Yes, America is the Land Of Opportunity, it says so right there on the label. Yet, for many because of their color or background or religion or economic status, America can be the Land Of No-Opportunity-For-You. This is not to say that ended miraculously the day when Obama won the election. It is only to acknowledge that it was a sweet miracle to be alive to see this day.

Eight years of fear and loathing, at home and abroad, are slowly coming to an end. George W. Bush, our 43rd President, returns to Texas, to a life out of the spotlight and out of power. The rest of his administration move on to whatever greener pastures they planned for themselves. And the culture of Washington D.C.--Chocolate City, to some--shifts again, trying to restore a semblance of balance to itself.

Days of hope and change and wonder are ahead. As are the aftershocks and aftermaths of the last eight years. Karma is a bitch, this Buddhist often says. The days of wine and roses paid with credit are gone and the bills are piling up and the jobs to pay for those bills go away, far away. The days ahead look dark and bleak. And then again, they do not, for we have a president determined to tell us both as much of the truth as we can handle and as much hope and encouragement as we need in these dark times. The road to tomorrow may be difficult and full of obstacles, but when isn’t it.

I will watch the inauguration in many different ways.

With the eyes of a child, marveling as the simple magic of our political system, the alchemy of changing power and attitude in our nation’s capital.

With the eyes of an African-American, filled with joy at seeing a commander-in-chief that looks like me for a change and with pride at how far a brother has gone, knowing such success asks of the rest of us to rise higher, reach farther, and go deeper than ever before.

With the eyes of the Buddha, finding the moments of Samadhi, or enlightenment, in everything that occurs, understanding that all is change anyway and that the changes we all seek must first begin within before they manifest without.

But I will watch nearly everything I can, to drink in this moment of history to the fullest.

There is something in the air.

Let’s all breathe it in and see what happens next with hope and wonder in our hearts.


Vincent S. Moore

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