Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Dawn of the Obama Era: In Memory of the Ancestors

The Obama era has begun. Like millions of people in the United States and around the world today I sat glued to the television watching the historic inauguration, relishing the man and the moment, its substance and symbolism. Tomorrow, of course the hard work starts and the harsh realities facing the new president will break today's magical spell. America's daunting challenges will puncture the bubble of messianic expectations invested in the young president. The extraordinary euphoria that has gripped this nation and parts of the world is obviously unsustainable, and it will inevitably evaporate in the predictable whirlwind of stumbles, setbacks, even scandals, not to mention the structural obstacles, the systemic imperatives of this mighty but beleaguered capitalist country and imperial power that will constrain bold changes, truly progressive transformation.