I settled into my usual Sunday talk show routine this morning. I got my coffee and some breakfast and settled on the couch with one of my cats curled up on my lap. There were a few moments that brought me to the following conclusion:
Be prepared on election night to see people break down on national television. With the exception of Fox News, I expect to see at least one national media figure/pundit/politician on each major broadcast break down in a teary, emotional reaction because of the enormity of Barack Obama's win.
This morning I was watching David Axelrod. Towards the end of the interview, he said the following in a comment, "I love him." And I thought that was an amazing thing for him to admit. I don't doubt it either. I love Barack Obama too. I really do. There is no better word to describe it.
Donna Brazile, later on that same program, looked as though she was containing an emotional reaction. I recalled back in the primaries how she so often barely contained her emotions. I expect to see tears from her on election night.
Chris Matthews on the Chris Matthews show made a closing comment that showed how this election is an overwhelming moment for him. And don't forget his infamous thrill down the leg comment.
I watched a live Obama event and I cried. Why I think that is important is the fact that I'm not even an American. However, the Obama message is so human that it affects almost everyone on some emotional level. The message of Hope is truly powerful. I liken it to how it may feel to be oppressed and finally set free. I know that is extreme but I just can't think of a better analogy. The Republican party has held America hostage for eight years and the moment of freedom is just two days away. Not only that, but the racial component adds another layer of complexity and emotion that I can't even begin to address.
Obama has used hope and change as his core message. But what he has also done is linked these ideas to emotions and feelings through an unexpected conduit: Patriotism.
The enormity of the Obama campaign is difficult to describe. His win will produce powerful emotional reactions on Tuesday evening. Many will be overcome. There will be many tears and they will be happy tears for the first time in a generation. So do not be surprised. And do not be afraid to cry your heart out.
I know I will.