Dear All – I wanted to offer a brief reflection on this momentous day in American history when we have awoke as a nation for the first time to an African American president. Our first African American president when twelve previous presidents were slave owners. We have turned a page in our cultural imagination, we have moved as a nation not divided along lines of color but united for a common purpose toward a future for the United States and the world that is not based in the ideology of fear but of hope.
It is a new day, a new opening, a new worldview that has been waiting for centuries to be realized from the depth of the ships that carried prisoners to be forced into a life of slavery to the millions who marched for civil rights to the unique struggle and life of Barack Obama. Together we greet this precious new day and as Maya Angelou says below we rise…
“You may write me down in history with your bitter, twisted lies, you may trod me in the very dirt but still, like dust, I’ll rise. Out of the huts of history’s shame I rise up from a past rooted in pain I rise. I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise into daybreak miraculously clear I rise. Bringing the hopes that my ancestors gave, I am the hope and the dream of the slave.’ And so, we all rise.