Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Richmond

In Richmond, on a warm June day, the new President of the new nation walked soberly down the street.

He was a tall man. Thin, with a narrow brown beard. He had risen to office on a wave of political passion. His tiny nation was at war and the future was uncertain.

The man walked on, away from the new Capitol Building, where he had just taken the oath of office. This was 1861. The man was Jefferson Davis and he had just become the President of the Confederate States of America.

Though bearing a striking resemblance, he was now at war with another young President, Abraham Lincoln.

The Civil War was about many many things, and I will resist the historical urge to name them here. However, all of these un-enumerated issues, in one way or another, always trailed back to the slavery of Africans.

That was a long time ago.

Richmond, Virginia, was the capitol of the Confederacy, the spiritual center of the Grand Old South. It was the last political bastion against emancipation. So vital was it, that the great General Robert E. Lee named his massive army: "The Army of Northern Virginia."

Richmond remained, after the war, the capitol of the State of Virginia. It has seen, particularly in the last 60 years, tremendous change.

Tonight, as the numbers fell into predictable color-coded categories, as swing states swung either red, or mostly blue, I watched with interest as Virginia votes were counted.

It was too-close to call for much of the night. The winners and losers would be named with or without it. And yet I waited, scanning the channels, surfing the wire sources, playing with CNN's cool on-line map.

It may have been NPR. Maybe CNN. I'm not sure. But after much counting and delay, the call was made. Old Virginia, led by Richmond, the capitol of the Old South, had elected a man with African blood to be President of the Union.

7 comments:

  1. No more Tina Fey returns to SNL?

    I'm still awaiting the Prop 8 results. The gap is narrowing, but will it be enough...?

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  2. btw-- I have to say, after all the hard-charging this past few weeks, I expected a little more jubilation in this post. The serene, almost nondescript ending was kind of... anticlimactic.

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  3. What more could I add to the events themselves?

    Besides, I feel serene.

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  4. The Gin and Tonic is 150 years old today

    Happy Birthday to the G&T

    I'm sorry, were you guys celebrating somthing else?

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  5. It was CNN. I had just switched over from watching the coverage on NPR when they made the call.

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  6. I feel a tear welling up. I sincerely hope that you were not comparing our new President to Lincoln.

    The people of California decided to ban gay marriage but approved a plethora of tax increases for various propositions.

    Makes sense to me.

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  7. And here I thought the people of California were way more progressive than that :-/

    Yup, makes sense to me too, Dr. B.

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Be compelling.

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