I attended election nights with President-Elect and President Barrack Obama in 2008 and in 2012. Both evenings rendered victory, but the nights were drastically different.
The historic evening of 2008 was in Chicago's front yard -- Grant Park on Michigan Avenue. People of all ages, and stages of life were in attendance. Grandparents held their grandchildren tight. Couples embraced. Black people were very still to record and savor every moment. It was an unusually warm night for November. TV cameras and media were stationed. The crowd was still, victorious, happy, and most of all crying. 2008 had a rapture of romance.
History had been made in electing the first African American president. The memorable scenes were Oprah Winfrey with her arms around a stranger and Rev. Jesse Jackson's streaming tears. The horns were honking, the crowd was orderly and people were dancing in the street. People mingled joyously. It was an amazing night and one that is etched in your mind, if you were there.
2012 gave us another historic night but it was different.nIt was a rainy night in Chicago. The returns were on the jumbo TV's at McCormick Place. When the win was announced there was a roar of the crowd. Worldwide press attended, but what was strikingly different is the press was separated from the people, separated from the people who had worked and volunteered for the campaign. This did not sit very well because the press wanted to hear what the people had to say, the photographers wanted to capture the moment and the radio people wanted to capture the sound of the people.
People were in a good mood but it was a different one. I wonder why the press was not allowed to mingle with the people. What a difference four years makes. 2008 was the best night.