[Photos first seen on Ezra Klein’s Blog]

Well, now that it’s over, I think I’ll say a word or two on the election.

I am so glad that Barack Obama won the election. I was afraid it was going to be closer that it was and that he was going to get robbed like Al Gore did.

But it didn’t happen that way and I think we’ve got a good chance at seeing some Change – the byword of his campaign, by the way – and I think it will be in a positive direction.

A message of Hope wins over Hate and Fear [seen on Twitter]

One of the things I like about Obama is he doesn’t seem to be caught up in the Old-Boy network of Washington Politics. Yes, he’s a Senator from Illinois, and he is adept at working in that framework, but he’s not afraid to go his own way. He seems to genuinely care about the people of this country, not just the rich and powerful ones, but all of them.

Obama has a reputation as a uniter, a facilitator who brings both side of an issue together and reaches a solution that benefits both. I think, if given half a chance – and let’s face it, a President doesn’t work alone, he needs the cooperation of Congress – he’ll do the right thing for all Americans.

It’s an historic page in American history. Our first Black, or African-American, whichever you prefer, President. That’s pretty important, but I think the really important thing about it was that the election wasn’t about race. I think America has finally reached the point where the majority of Americans can accept the right candidate, whether he (or she) be black, white, pink, brown, or purple. It just wasn’t about race, it was about what was best for us for the next four years and to most Americans who are tired of the way things have been going, that means Change.

Sure, there were some pockets of hate that are probably doing a slow burn today over the thought of a Black man running our country, and maybe there were people who voted for Obama just because he was Black, but I think mainstream America has put that aside and it’s a milestone in measuring the decline of racism in America and a sign of real progress.

Frankly, I’ve been a political cynic for a long time. I’ve believed that most of Washington politics is about special interests and lining pockets for personal gain. I didn’t think necessarily all the people we elected were bad people, but that the system surely turned them that way. I’ve distrusted mainstream politics for so long that it’s finally refreshing to see someone who holds himself above all that.

And I didn’t get that feeling from John McCain. Sorry. You’ve got to admire a war hero, and there is no doubt about his having done much for this country, but I was just a little scared he was too much of a war-hawk and a little too embedded in the Old-Boy game, Maverick, or not.

I hope Barack can take his high standards and set them for all of our politicians, to hold them to it. We don’t need lobbyists and special interests to tell our congressmen and senators what to do. What is good for the American people will, in the long run, be good for the companies and industries that the lobbyists claim to represent. Washington needs to put the interests of it’s citizens first, not the Military-Industrial-financial complex.

I did go and vote. The election in Lockport was a little unexciting. Other than the presidential election, there wasn’t a lot of activity. The biggest contest here was for the County Sheriff, which in a rare occurrence, there were two good, qualified choices. The one time I heard them both on the radio, the striking thing was how much they agreed upon.