A new president, a new beginning

Editor's Note

December 07, 2008|By Michelle Deal-Zimmerman | Michelle Deal-Zimmerman,michelle.deal@baltsun.com

I've come aboard as the new editor of UniSun at a time of great promise and strong pride for people of color.

Indeed, it's been an inspiring year for black Americans, many of whom never thought they would live to see a black man in the White House's Oval Office.

With Barack Obama's amazing and historic triumph on Nov. 4, we now have a president-elect and first family who look a lot like you and me.

I know it took a lot of sacrifice and struggle to get to this moment of change. But as a daughter of the South, too young to have participated in the civil rights movement, I see it as a beginning, not an ending.

A beginning to a new dialogue, and I hope, a new understanding, about race. A beginning to friendships between black and white and red and blue. A beginning to the process of a more diversified government that truly represents all people.

A beginning to the hard work we'll each have to do to reach across the grocery aisle, the cubicle wall or basketball court to express our goodwill and explore our commonality.

We all know that there are many negative stereotypical views of black men and women. Having a black president cannot make them all go away, but on Election Day voters put 65 million cracks in the walls between Americans, and that's a great start.

Together, let's make a New Year's resolution to keep chipping away at ignorance, hatred and discrimination. From and by people of any color.

As Obama said on that historic night just one month ago:

"This victory alone is not the change we seek. It is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were."

So, in the spirit of moving forward, this issue we bring you a guide to the inauguration, the next step for Obama as he officially takes office and brings his family to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. It will be a huge, joyful celebration not to be missed. And we've got you covered on what to wear to the parties, too.

Speaking of parties, Kwanzaa festivities begin at the end of the month, and we have just the right recipe for your feast.

Finally, in keeping with the theme of change, we talk with E. Faye Butler, the leading actress in a local production of Caroline, or Change, a moving Tony Award-winning musical about a black maid and the white family she serves. It's a reminder of how far we've come.

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