November 06, 2008

A vote to transcend politics of prejudice

On Tuesday, I voted, with my daughter by my side, and I experienced something unexpected: My eyes welled up, and a tear dropped. I suppose I was simply overwhelmed by the fact that I was actually voting for an African-American candidate for president ("Making history," Nov. 5).

I am too young to remember the civil rights struggle. But I am a student of history, and I live in this world where prejudice and ignorance still reign.

And frankly, I never expected that this day would come.

But maybe we have turned a corner. Maybe the politics of racial divisiveness, of greed, of fear, of ignorance and of scripted morality have finally given way to a desire for our nation to achieve goodness and hope.

To me, this election was not about "Joe the Plumber" or socialism, or a few more dollars in taxes for the rich.

To me, it was about our ability to evolve as a nation and as a people into something better than what we have been.

As I write this, the election is not over, so I am not sure who won. But I am so happy to have had the opportunity to sit with my daughter and push that button for Sen. Barack Obama.

The two of us looked at each other and smiled.

And when I wiped my tear, I hugged her, because I knew that her world would be better than mine.

Andy Lazris, Columbia

Election judges make voting system work

Wanting to take part in this historic election, I volunteered this year to be an election judge in Baltimore ("Making history," Nov. 5).

I turned up at my polling place on Election Day at 5:30 a.m., and spent nearly 16 hours working with 10 other election judges. What I saw there was truly inspirational.

Each and every judge worked hard all day long, with a quick smile and a friendly laugh for every voter, every child, every family member who came to our polling place.

No one complained, and every judge took his or her responsibilities seriously. Authenticity and accuracy were clearly on everyone's mind.

I came away from the experience with a new respect for the voting system in Baltimore and the unquestionable integrity of our election judges.

Kris Appel, Baltimore

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