Who suspected we would witness the inauguration of a black American, Barack Obama, as President less than two years later?
In that posting I quoted President Abraham Lincoln's 1863 Gettysburg Address looking back to the founding of our Nation "Four score and seven years ago ..." and added:
"It is now eleven score and eleven years and our flag still flies proudly. Despite our many problems, we remain the last best hope for the crazy proposition free men and women can govern themselves. We are honored to live in the country with the highest degree of freedom, the widest availability of opportunity, and the greatest prosperity that has ever existed in the history of the world."
One-hundred years after Lincoln, in 1963, Martin Luther King gave his "I have a dream" speech including the memorable "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
How far we have come! In my own lifetime I personally witnessed "Negroes" required to move to the back of an interstate Greyhound bus as we crossed the Maryland border on the way from New York City to Washington DC. As a child I was appalled by "White Only" and "Colored" toilets in the South.
But, we have not come as far as I would like. We are still far, far, far from "colorblind". All the celebrations this week have focussed on Obama's skin color to a far greater extent than the content of his character.
Of course, we will always notice things like skin tone and eye color and gender and height and so on, but I long for the day when our regard for skin color falls to the level of emphasis we devote to other physical characteristics. Perhaps the historic events of this week will get us closer to MLK's dream come true.