Fellow citizens, pull up a chair.
Make yourself comfortable, my Yankee siblings.
Smoke if you got 'em, American brethren and sistren.
You're voting for Obama--the man of the hour.
Oh, that's fine--a free country, one man one vote and all that.
All I ask is that you do it for the same time-honored reasons you'd vote for any other presidential candidate, e.g., he's the best man for the job or the thought of the other guy/gal getting the job makes you physically, emotionally or morally ill.
Do not--notnotnotnotnotnotnotnot--vote for Senator Obama because you think he's going to miraculously heal the nation's ills, specifically racism.
Yes, the election to the highest office in the land of a man who would have been forced by Jim Crow to sit in the back of a bus less than fifty years ago would be a stunning, and in a very concrete way, welcome development, unparalleled in modern history.
But if that should happen, the dawn of January 20, 2009 won't see the end of racism in America. Nor will it scribe "Paid In Full" on the debt owed to the victims of racism. It's an election, not an absolution. Another one will happen in 2012. And another one in 2016. Unless that Mayan calendar thing is right, that is.
Vote for the man because of who he is, and what he stands for--or against.
Investing a candidate with transcendent expectations is a sure way to make things worse, not better.