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Monday, January 7, 2008

The Best is Yet to Come

Guy Djoken

With less than a day from the New Hampshire primary, Senator Barack Obama's (Illinois) lead has jumped into a double-digit lead in the latest CNN/WMUR nightly tracking poll. He stands at 39% compared to 29% for Senator Hillary Clinton of New York.

This result shows once again that despite all the challenges we have been facing in the last hundred years, we still live in a country in which anyone with a little bit of hard work, courage and hope, can rise above difficulties and turn a dream unto reality. His last victory with a 9 point difference over Clinton was a resounding success that took many by surprise coming from a state in which minorities represent less than 8%. As we watch history in the making, it is quite important to pause for a moment and process the real repercussion of such an event.

For millions of African Americans and other minorities in America for which this was just unthinkable a few months ago, Obama's success is as resounding as Dr. King's Dream. It is an event perceived by some as the materialization of that Dream.

While waiting for the experts to rationalize this and explain to us why they failed to see this coming, we need to bow down once again and pay tribute to all the Civil Right Fighters who decades ago paved the road that Obama and us are now walking on.

Obama's victory is a testament to the young generation of Americans who may be less inclined to give their seat in a bus to an elderly or disable person on the bus, but yet are more tolerant and acceptant of other races and cultures unlike the generation that preceded them.

Jim Crow and his descendant's worst nightmare is becoming a reality in the America of the twenty-first century and I can imagine him spinning in his grave. Dr. King on the other hand may be smiling on the idea that his death may after all have not have been in vain. Let's build on this success and plant the seed of change all over Frederick County in the hope that by 2009, they may be ready to blossom.

The recent election of Mr. Daryl Boffman as President to the Frederick County Board of Education, the only non Caucasian elected in any office in Frederick County was a milestone that many of us see as a sign for a new era for Frederick County. Looking at that success as well as the Obama phenomenon and projecting ourselves to a hopeful future, we can comfortably say "The Best is Yet to Come".

Guy Djoken is President of the NAACP, Frederick County, Maryland Branch

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