I am happy that Obama has won, creating history. But it is also fascinating how McCain has graciously accepted defeat.
We never see such speeches in India. Partly because we lack manners and what I would call a spirit of the 'greatest common good'.
But mainly because for the last few elections no one has really 'won'. It's not over till it's over. Horses must be traded, MPs herded into camps. Anything to get the magic number '272'. And then some.
What is also fascinating about Obama's win is that yes, he is the first African American to be elected to the highest office. But he reminds me very much of the story of Prahlad and Hiranyakashipu.
Hiranyakashipu had asked the Lord for a boon whereby he could not be killed - during day or by night, inside the home or outside, not on earth or on sky; neither by a man nor an animal; neither by astra nor by shastra.
But eventually Lord Vishnu took the form of a Narasimha (who is half-man and half-lion) and killed Hiranyakashipu at dusk (which was neither day nor night), on the steps of the porch of his house (which was neither inside the house nor outside) by restraining him on his lap (which is neither in the sky nor on the earth) and mauling him with his claws (which are neither astra nor shastra).
Obama is also neither black nor white. He is either/or and at the best of times, both. Black enough yet 'white' enough. Especially in education and outlook.
Obama was created in a different mould because he was destined to slay the Demon of Race.
And here in India one has to wonder when we will see an 'Obama' who will help us rise above our differences. And lead us into 'change we can believe in'...
Not in 2009... but someday for sure.