Today is history. I cannot remember ever feeling this thrilled or so hopeful about a new president. The closest thing I can associate with this was the tenor of the nation during the years before the Kennedy assasination. The country was unified behind him and he was beloved by almost everyone. When he was shot I was in school, and I remember students were either stunned or openly weeping. My daughter Wenonah reminded me this morning that once many years ago I spoke to her about the Kennedy years, about how he was loved, how everyone was so positive about—and supportive of—our government. She had told me that she just couldn’t imagine ever feeling that way, or even relate to that experience. After the inauguration this morning she told me that now she understood what I meant.
After November 22nd, 1963, our country entered a long dark era, from which only now it may be emerging. I never thought a day like this would be possible in my lifetime. After all the US has been through I never imagined that we could again elect a person of such intellect and potential as Barack Obama. I believe he is capable of being one of the greatest leaders this nation has ever had. We will all need to re-evaluate what is truly important in our lives, and he and his administration will need the support of all of us to tackle the monumental challenges that lie ahead.