I understand that many folks are really excited that Obama won the election. I admit, I am one of those people. But I know that out there are people who were as passionate as I was about Obama—but about McCain. Those people felt, with all of their heart, that he was the best man to run the country and that he would make changes that fit with their beliefs. They are saddened by his defeat.
While attending several nonpolitical events in the past few weeks, I have heard speakers make pro-Obama comments that assume everyone in the room is of the same mindset. While I personally agree with the pro-Obama comments, I am also very dismayed by them. I’m the Jewish woman who wrote an editorial last year about a Martin Luther King diversity celebration that never acknowledged the non-Christians in the crowd. I felt unwelcomed. How could I support that same exclusionary behavior against others?
Please, unless the event is a Democratic Party gathering, if you must make a comment about Obama’s victory, do so with some outward acknowledgement that some in the crowd may not have voted for Obama. Just a simple statement, something like, “I realize we’ve all come here tonight having voted from our hearts and that that may have led us to vote for different candidates. I’m glad you all are here. From my own experience, here is what I’m feeling—”
Part of my excitement for Obama is the hope I feel about his ability to hear all sides of the issues and work to unite us. Let’s follow his example.
— Linda Block