“We Are A Better Country Than This”, “Enough” updated: 11am

Outside of the first line that Obama said (I will accept your nomination to be President of the United States), that was easily my favorite line of the night. I had the unique and special opportunity to spend the day down at Invesco Field at Mile High on the historic day of Obama’s acceptance speech. If you remember from a previous post, I was able to acquire one ticket through my state union’s office.

The day started early with several things going on at home (getting Ahna’s car to and from the shop for belt replacement, finding a place to go tonight, and general things to do around the house). I left to meet up with Adam (he is a good friend from work and our newly elected local President) for lunch at 11am at Govnr’s Park in downtown Denver. We thought that we would try to stuff ourselves with some food and drink before paying stadium prices; as well as attempt to figure out how we were going to get to Invesco. Remember: a sold out stadium was expected – with no use of the stadium parking lots. 

We enjoyed the perfect summer day, some good food, and settled on a plan to leave my car on the street near the restaurant and to take his car to a potential parking spot 3 blocks away from the stadium….it worked. Adam works part time for a private ambulance company that has a ‘station’ near Invesco Field, and they allowed us to park there. The short drive and then shorter walk to the stadium allowed us to get there at around 1:45 and head for security. 

Unlike a lot of other stories that you might hear (including one in a second), we had a great experience in security: 3 minutes total…including the line. The secret? There wasn’t one, just get there early – like they suggested. Some friends of ours were not able to get down there as early as we were due to work commitments, and ended up spending almost 3 hours in the security lines (pictures of those lines are somewhere below). 

Once inside we found our seats (section assigned, but seating was first-come first-served within that section) and waited for the opening act….which was surprisingly one of my favorite bands: the Yonder Mountain String Band! They only played four songs, but did an amazing job…they said that in the 10 years together as a band, this was the ‘coolest thing that we have ever done.’ Several more musicians, many more speakers, and lots of walking around later, the heart of the evening began. PS, in the middle of all of that stuff, we were able to meet up with Joel, who was working there in IT support of the press. We hung out for a while and heard stories of his week at the DNC before he had to head back off to do more work. 

The first big speaker of the night was Al Gore, who gave a rousing speech that obviously focused on the need for environmental change from the White House. Not long after that Joe Biden made a surprise appearance, then Dick Durbin did the intro to Obama. There was a really well done video as a brief overview of Obama’s life…then he simply walked out on stage. No intro from the loudspeaker, no spotlight, no screaming intro speech…just walked out. Of course the already amped crowd lit up – they say that more than 84,000 people were there.

He walked out and said that he accepted the nomination of the party, and I got chills and tears thinking about the historical significance of what just happened. It was amazing, and I think that I could have left then. But there was an amazing speech still to be told: my take on it was that it was exactly what needed to be said. Things that people could wrap their arms around, things that countered future McCain questions, things that defined what he was going to try to do and how he was going to do it. 

I challenge anyone that is not an outright Obama supporter (independent, undecided, Republican) to watch the speech and tell me why you won’t vote for him. Here is another take on it.

It was an amazing day/evening/night that nobody will soon forget. I felt honored to be there and disappointed that I couldn’t share it with Ahna and Ezra. It was the kick off to one of the most important elections in our nation’s history, and it was the most historically significant event of our generation. Oh, and it provided lots of photos…

Ed. Note: as I am writing this post, news sources have confirmed that McCain has chosen Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate. While my initial reaction (and justifiably) was that this means that no matter what happens, history will be made in this election with a woman or minority being placed into the highest office….I think back to a conversation that I had with a Women’s Studies professor at VCU when Elizabeth Dole was rumored to want to run for the Presidency. The gist of the discussion was that even though great progress would be made on many fronts, she would still be the wrong person for the job. Period. Don’t vote for someone just because they are a minority to a female…it does the entire push for diversity injustice. My second reaction to the announcement is: how could they make the case that Obama isn’t qualified, but that Palin is? To quote one of my favorite movies (Tombstone): “apparently his hypocricy knows no bounds.” 

Update, 11am: Two things…the first: I forgot to mention that my car was ticketed for a parking violation near the restaurant – it’s a $25 bummer. The second thing: my latest reaction after watching McCain’s intro speech for Palin, and while holding Ezra during that speech, was one of amazement that Ezra will grow up only knowing that anyone can get elected into the White House. It’s not only a white man’s club anymore.

I guess one more thing: for those who diametrically opposed Hillary (especially for those that lucked out when she wasn’t nominated and therefore didn’t have to admit that you didn’t want a woman in office), how does the nomination of Palin sit with you?  (Ed Note: I’m not in any way suggesting that all/any of you feel this way, but I have heard the conversations and I know that there are people out there who wouldn’t have voted for someone just because they are a female or black or both….and won’t admit it publicly.)

As always, the photos are mixed up (WordPress’ fault, not mine), so bear with them.

Comments

  1. Sounds like an awesome experience, Oren, and I, too, thought the speech was excellent. Glad to hear your description of being there.

  2. Hey I watched the speech as well and remembered that you were going to be there. I didn’t see you on TV though, that would have been really cool. I agree with you that this election is going to make history, regardless of who the winner is.

    As for Hilary, I’m so glad she didn’t get the nomination and it is not because I do not want a woman as President (or Vice for that matter). I think it would be great to have a woman in either job. All I can say for Hilary is that regardless of the issues I just don’t trust her as far as I can throw her and that’s not far.

    I will be watching the Republican convention too to see what’s going on there. I’ve never been one to be interested in politics, I hated that our senior year I had to do an Election project for Mr. Mika (I think that was his name) Anyway I’m curious to see how the election unfolds and for Ian also knowing that it truly isn’t a “white” man’s club anymore. I’m hoping Ian will see a Hispanic in the oval office at some point. After all he is 50%! 🙂

  3. I just wanted to let you know that I changed my affiliation for this election to Democrat- you are partly to blame (or should I say thank?). We really do need a ‘change’. Chuck’s truck is costing three figures to fill, my financial aid interest rates are higher than my home mortgage rates, and I’m tired of breathing this nasty Denver smog! By the way- I didn’t vote for Bush (at least not the second time); and I’m very sorry for the first- I was under the influence of Kroto! Chuck was standing by the stage with the secret service for crowd control at the DNC thursday night and all he could talk about was that he met Fergie, Jessie Jackson, and Jessica Alba! Forget about Obama! He said he wasn’t going to vote for him because of some rumor that he refused to wear an American flag pendant . . . oh, by the way, did you notice Obama’s American flag pendant?
    P.S. Ezra is super cute!!!! Miss you guys!

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