You might have noticed that the superheroes have been silent since the election. We talked about hanging up our capes until the election in 2010, but recent events have made me change my mind about that.
In the last week alone, the horrible, terrible New York Post published a racist cartoon with the image of a gorilla being shot with the caption, “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill.”
Then there’s the case of the mayor of Los Alamitos, CA (thanks, Ripley, for the tip). He sent a picture of the White House in an e-mail. That should be fine, right? Nope. Instead of grass, the picture had a watermelon patch in in the front lawn. The title of the e-mail: “No Easter egg hunt this year.” Just in case you didn’t get the “joke,” the implication is that because the Obamas are different, everything will fundamentally change. Oh, no. There are scary black people in the White House. And they aren’t servants. Eek!
Still don’t think there’s anything going on?
Well, around time time of the inauguration, a bakery in New York came up with the fabulous idea of selling pastries commemorating the historic day. Great idea, right? Nope. This baker decided that he would sell “Drunken Negro Head” cookies. Think I’m kidding? Watch this news report on the bakery and see for yourself.
What does this say about race in our country? We have elected an African-American as president, but how far have we really come?
These incidents remind me of the racist yard sign Ferosha saw during the campaign. The fact that people think blatant racism is something they can get away with kind of makes me worry about where race relations in our country are headed.
I don’t really know how to talk about this. But I feel it would be wrong for me not to. After all, I am a black woman and now I’m a blogger, too. That means I can get on my soapbox and talk about whatever I want. And you can read it or you can ignore it, but at least I get to say what I want. If you don’t like it, post a comment or get your own blog.
But, like I said, I don’t really know what to say about this. All I do know is that these events have compelled me to write. And I’m putting it out there because I think that race is an issue that should be talked about. What do you think?
It’s blueberry and raspberry — both fresh and frozen, since fresh berries are so damn expensive. Best served with chocolate and vanilla ice cream, of course.
The pastry is store-bought because I’m lazy. I need to work on my technique a little (where’s America’s Test Kitchen when you need them?), but it wasn’t difficult and, in the end, it tasted pretty good. The next time, I might try baking the pastry parts of the logo design separately and dusting them with powdered sugar before putting them on top of the fruit. That way, they’ll look more like the white parts on the logo. And what doesn’t taste better with powdered sugar?
An easier variation would be to make a custard pie and put fresh berries and whipped cream on top in the logo design. But I prefer baked fruit pies and I’m not a fan of whipped cream.
~Ripley, who don’t like the cornbread either.
After four days of canvassing for Obama in Hampton, Virginia I want to paraphrase JFK in declaring, “Ich bin ein Virginian.” Or maybe it’s more appropriate to say, “Sugar, honey, I am now a Virginian.”
Because it was this previous bastion of conservatism, a former confederate state, that voted for Obama – the first black prez of the United States.
Yes, this calls for a chorus of Hallelujah.
Hampton, Virginia, a town of 150,000 on the Southeastern tip of Virginia, where I “lived” for four days, is now my favorite place on earth. Adopt me, Hamptonians, adopt me.
Carrying literature for Obama, I wove my way through primarily working class African American neighborhoods with names like RipRap Road and Kecoughtan, door-knocking and shaking hands and slapping people five, and weeping when people told me what an Obama election would mean to them.
I cried when a 76-year-old woman, Mary, told me, “Girl, I’ve lived through a lot of elections but I never thought I’d see the day when a black man was elected president.” I cried when I met a young woman from Hampton University who was voting for the first time, and called her grandmother in the hospital to tell her she was voting for her too. I cried when my friend Joan called me from Newport News (where she was posted) to tell me about driving a middle-aged woman named Peaches to the polls. When Joan showed her how to fill out an absentee ballot, she realized that the woman didn’t really know how to write and, in fact, had never voted before. But when Peaches came out of the booth and placed the “I voted” sticker on shirt, she just stood there radiant, beaming with joy. Peaches had been transformed by the process.
That’s not to say that everyone in Virginia was totally enamored with Obama. I met a white woman living in Section 8 housing, on Social Security disability, who was sure Obama’s election would mean that his Cabinet would be filled with angry black people who were out to get her. But when I told her that Obama was a lot more fair-minded than McCain who would likely try to privatize Social Security – cutting her disability benefits – she said she might just vote for Obama. And who knows maybe she came around.
On the evening of November 4th, I joined hundreds of party-goers at the Hampton Holiday Inn to watch the results. When Virginia went blue, I and, everyone next to me, shouted themselves hoarse, with a cacophonous roar of “YesObamaOhmyGodYaayyyyyyy.” And I can safely say I have never hugged so many strangers of so many colors, sizes and ages at one moment in time.
As one woman, Kimmi, told me as I was leaving the party after Obama won, “The feeling I have is indescribable…this is for all my ancestors, those seniors who fought the civil rights struggles to now have an African American President stand up for all people, of all races.”
Amen. This election has already made the world a better place. Ich bin ein Obamian.
This was cross-posted on Huffington Post
Everyone experiences election night in a different way. Some want to be alone with the TV to intently listen to everything said by the networks. Some find the anticipation stressful and read a book or escape to a movie and only check the numbers when it is all over. Some watch the returns with a group of friends gathered in the living room with pizza and soda. And some party in the streets. Tell us about your election night experience. Where were you on this historic evening, how did you feel, who were you with and what was said?
It took Ferosha, Capitan O’Biden and Vulcanella about 1.5 hours to vote today, but we’ve heard from more than one person that it took as little as 10 minutes. How long did it take you? Inquiring minds want to know.
Want to know when polls close in your area?
SwingStateProject.Com put together this handy map of when the polls close in each of the 50 states.
Here is what to watch for and when:
6 pm: Polls close in parts of Indiana and Kentucky. The networks won’t be able to call these states until the rest of the polls close. Especially in Indiana where the Chicago outskirts close an hour later and are expected to bring big votes for Obama.
7 pm: Polls close in Virginia, Indiana, Kentucky, Vermont, South Carolina and Georgia. The sooner they call Virginia for Obama the better. The bigger his margin of victory there, the better his victory will be throughout the night. I’ll keep watching the returns but Virginia will be the highlight of my evening.
7:30 pm: Polls close in Ohio, West Virginia, and North Carolina. Let the landslide begin! If Obama picks off NC and OH it’s all over for McCain. Even if McCain hangs on I’ll still be feeling pretty good. Of course this is assuming a smooth day of voting. States are promising that anyone still in line when the polls close are eligible to vote. With 2+ hours of waiting it could be a while but here’s hoping. Order some pizza and open some beer just in case.
8 pm: Here is when the results start flooding in. Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, the District of Columbia Michigan, Illinois, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Missouri, and Oklahoma. Who hoo, enjoy the wave of victory.
8:30 pm: Take a breather while they call Arkansas for McCain.
9 pm: The flood begins again with New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona.
10 pm: Iowa, Montana, Utah, and Nevada close.
11 pm: We close with a bang. Washington, Oregon, California, and Hawaii.
By my count that gives Obama a hearty victory with 339 electoral votes which thank goodness means you can turn off the TV and get some sleep.
However if you really want to see Ted Stevens lose his Senate seat you will have to stay awake until 1am when the last of Alaska’s polls close. Most of the polls close by midnight except for those little islands, you know, the ones that can see Russia.
If you don’t vote today, you don’t get to complain about the direction of the country. You don’t get to complain about the war in Iraq, foreign policy, education, global warming, health care, reproductive rights, or anything else.
Some people find it easy to say, “I don’t want to stand in that long line just to vote.” But by saying that people are forgetting the people who gave their lives just so all Americans could have the right to vote. If you don’t vote I don’t want to hear you talk about politics. If you don’t care enough to vote today, you give the signal that you don’t care about the people who fought and gave their lives so you could have the right to vote. And that’s just plain sad and disrespectful.
The video below comes from Time reporter Jay Newton-Small on the campaign trail.