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Good morning world. Yes, Obama was elected yesterday.

What has happened to the state of politics in the USA now? Will people continue to stay engaged? And what were the triggers that led to the highest voter turnout in ages? I believe there were a few things that led to this: the internet, the state of our country, and an Obama campaign that stayed optimistic and focused on resolving our country's issues. It's no question that negative campaigning, while dramatic, is fleeting and doesn't manage a sustainable interest. It's like a sugar high and both are unhealthy.

My mom, I'm proud to say, voted for the first time in her life for an American president after becoming a US citizen a few years ago. Though she's lived in the US since 1970, she is still working on a strong command of the English language. Yet, she had a point-of-view on the key issues being debated. Where, in the past, we avoiding talking politics, we talked genuinely about the economy, health care and education in the days proceeding the election. Something was stirred.

Yesterday, as my mom routinely picks up my nephews from elementary school, my nephews called to say hello on their way home. One of them had a mini-election in their classroom and Obama won handily 17-3 (this in NM which voted Republican in the '04 election). 10, 9, and 8 years old, they were screaming for Obama to win (even though their parents seemed to oppose the candidate). Something was stirred. I thought more about creative ways that teachers could introduce the notion of a political system at an early age.

This is indeed a new era in the American political system which has (to a pleasant surprise) created a sense of ownership and participation among the masses. The streets of SF were alive and with energy last night - hooligans - but, for an election?! Something deep was stirred and there is great momentum in the country right now. As Obama mentioned yesterday, this first step is but a chance to enable change. There is a responsibility we all carry now. But, no doubt, there is even more confidence in our abilities after yesterday.

Congratulations to Mr. Obama, his family, and the entire campaign. I'm giddy.


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