Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The 44th President of the United States of America

A family picture, taken a few years ago. May God keep this family safe and grant wisdom to do what is right.
Today was an historical day in the history of the United States of America.

In my own lifetime, having travelled as a young girl in the Southern States, I have seen the prejudice and nastiness shown to people of colour.

Even as late as 1994, I have heard nasty remarks made about people of colours while in Florida.
It gives me much pleasure to know that the President's Dad was from Africa who, by his own choice, immigrated to the States.

Unlike so many other people of African descent who live in the States, this man was not forced to come but chose willingly to go and take his chances in a new land.

Having come from a family where one of them was an immigrant, it most likely will give the new President a better insight into the problems that immigrants face coming to a new land.
I also like the fact that he has lived in Indonesia for four years, which of course, has one of the biggest Muslim populations in the world. Thus, he will have a more accurate picture of what Islamic life is all about, rather than just what is reported through the media.

My greatest happiness was hearing God's name mentioned and the prayers of two pastors during the ceremony.

I would pray that this signifies a change is coming, that once again, the States will become a God-fearing nation.

As a poet (although not a good one), it pleased me to hear the poet, Elizabeth Alexander, read her work at such a great event. Perhaps people may turn back to language as expressed in poetry and the written word again.
Elizabeth Alexander's credentials are above reproach and I found information on her on the internet which was posted below this article. I think perhaps I may have enjoyed her other poetry better than the one she used today but her credentials are certainly excellent and she is a well known American poet.
Information on Elabeth Alexander.

Elizabeth Alexander is a poet, essayist, playwright, and teacher born in New York City and raised in Washington, DC. Alexander has degrees from Yale University and Boston University and completed her Ph.D. in English at the University of Pennsylvania. She has published five books of poems: The Venus Hottentot (1990), Body of Life (1996), Antebellum Dream Book (2001), American Sublime (2005), which was one of three finalists for the Pulitzer Prize and was one of the American Library Association’s “Notable Books of the Year;” and, most recently, her first young adult collection (co-authored with Marilyn Nelson), Miss Crandall’s School for Young Ladies and Little Misses of Color (2008 Connecticut Book Award). Her two collections of essays are The Black Interior (2004) and Power and Possibility (2007), and her play, “Diva Studies,” was produced at the Yale School of Drama.Professor Alexander is the first recipient of the Alphonse Fletcher, Sr. Fellowship for work that “contributes to improving race relations in American society and furthers the broad social goals of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision of 1954.” She is the 2007 winner of the first Jackson Prize for Poetry, awarded by Poets and Writers. Other awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, two Pushcart Prizes, the George Kent Award, given by Gwendolyn Brooks, a Guggenheim fellowship as well as the Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching at University of Chicago. She currently teaches in the Department African American Studies at Yale University.

I am so happy to have been able to see the ceremony on my local station and participate, even in such a small way, in this event.

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