Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., wasn't my first choice for president; he was my third, behind New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and New York Sen. Hillary Clinton.
Richardson soon proved that experience wasn't enough. He even lacked gravitas. Hillary Clinton could woulda shoulda been the Democratic Party's nominee, but Big Media threw so many sexist slings at her while elevating Obama as the Great Black Hope that she succumbed to the powerful forces of NBC, CNN, ABC and the rest. For a long time, I couldn't even talk about it. Sexism was allowed to flourish and be renamed Bill Clinton. It quickly became impossible for Hillary to overcome the partesan pundits in Big Media who have become too powerful for the nation's good.
Millionaire blovioators like Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann of MSNBC who think they represent Everyman and Everywoman, were part of a dismaying chorus of self-appointed progressive white men who could not abide Hillary and adored Obama. They helped pave the way to his victory as the nominee. They, and the so-called "Lion of the Senate," Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., he who killed Mary Jo Kopechne and has, according to one of my sisters, never again leave anyone behind, moved mountains to crush Hillary.
They crushed my spirits, too, for a while. Sexism is still OK. Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., recently won over a contender, Ed O'Reilly, in the primaries in Massachusetts. O'Reilly should have won -- he brought new ideeas, new energy; he brought views that were strkiningly similar to that of Obama, but Kerry still could help but do all he could avoid a debate. The two finally did have a debate, and Kerry, in an intervew afterwards, said dismissively of O'Reilly, "I go back to work in Washington. I've got a full-time job, unlike my opponent."
Kerry went back and voted for the $700 billion Wall Street bailout bill that paid for executives at AIG to have a $400,000 retreat.
Obama, meanwhile, had seemed to me, from day one, to be a naive yet arrogant contender for the party's nomination. After all these years of W., I didn't want another unprepared president, no matter how gifted with words.
In one editorial, the New York Times bemoaned Obama's stance of awaiting for a coronation rather than enduring the primary process.
In the end, though, because of superior organizational skills matched by sexism, Obama won.
The irony is that Obama became a candidate worth supporting. He endured, matured, he kept making those poetic speeches in front of crowds in the thousands because he knows that we need policy points and poetry; he changed the landscape of what is expected of a politician running for the presidency. He has been consistently a statesman in the face of attacks and disdain by opponents. He has shown his mettle.
I always knew he was smart. Finally he doesn't appear smarmy as well. In these last three weeks, I have come to know a candidate who has worked hard to persuade me to his side by showing up again and again in the line of fire by Republicans and repelling their insults with his own ideas -- health care for everyone ("It is a right," he said at the second debate).
A friend said to me, "History is calling Obama and he is answering."
A few months ago, I thought Sen. John Edwards would win, since is a white man. This primary season has taught me about hope. Hillary gave the best speech in Denver that showed why she was the best presidential candiadte. But Obama is just as deserving of the nomination. He earned it.