- 5 Nov 08, 05:51 AM GMT
John McCain - the veteran war hero - finally gave up the fight on an Arizonan lawn, under a cloudless night sky, by gently swaying palm trees. In front of him of a crowd of several thousand party supporters applauded.
After weeks of sometimes stilted speeches, John McCain spoke well, with a tired, slightly croaking voice. There were several boos from the crowd when he mentioned Barack Obama's name. He silenced them with a quiet "please".
"This is an historical election and I recognise the specific significance it has for African-Americans."
"Although we have come a long way from the old injustices that once stained our reputation (as a country) the memory of them still had the power to wound."
"America today is a world away from the cruel and prideful bigotry of that time. There is no better evidence of this than the election of an African-American to the presidency of the United States."
Some in the crowd cried as the truth set in, that their man had lost. They told me they wished Barack Obama well, but they said the better man had lost. Some expressed a concern for the direction in which they now believe their country will be taken. They don't believe Barack Obama is strong enough for this job. They don't see any evidence that he has ever been tested.
Then they began to file away, into the night. Some to drink at the gatherings they had hoped would be celebrations. Some simply headed home. The party is a thousand and more miles to the north, in Chicago, under another clear sky. There, people will wake up to a brave and fresh new world full of possibilities. Here, when the sun rises over Arizona, many will shake their heads, and fear for the future.
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