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A Little Piece of History

by Archives January 27, 2009

It’s been the buzz for weeks. Barack Obama’s inauguration was going to be a special moment in history: the first black President; one step closer to the realization of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream; and, many hoped, “Change” day one. Being there would mean a 10-hour drive to D.C., only a few hours on the ground, and then another 10 hours back to Montreal. But it would also mean being part of that moment. Years from now, when people would muse about where they were when Obama took the oath of office, we wanted to be able to say, “We were there.”
And we were. No, not close enough to see Obama without the aid of a massive TV screen, but we were on the Mall – at the Washington Monument to be exact – with hundreds of thousands of people who for the past year told themselves, “Yes we can.”
We stood in the cold together, shoulder to shoulder as he took his oath, and then slowly began to make our way off the Mall and back through the streets of D.C. As we threaded our way past the hawkers with their first family T-shirts and their Obama bumper stickers, I hoped these chilled but hopeful voters would remember what had made this special moment possible: the belief that yes “we” can, not yes “he” can.

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