A new era has dawned for Africa and for the entire world. It is almost like what happened in South Africa after Nelson Mandela became the first democratically elected President of that land. Then, as now, people of color everywhere in Africa, in the U.S., everywhere in the world had a new spring in their walk. They held their heads high, and their shoulders were straighter.
Obama's election has given hope to people everywhere that change is possible, that this debilitating status quo of a polarized world of "them" and "us" can change. People the world over want the U.S. to take its rightful place as leader in the commonwealth of nations. They want to see a U.S. without the arrogant unilateralism that led to the disastrous Iraq invasion, to the rejection of the Kyoto Protocol and the refusal to sign the Rome Statute establishing the International Criminal Court. All this left the world resenting a bullyboy U.S.
The world now expects the new President to close down that abomination, Guantánamo Bay; to bring viable initiatives for peace in the Middle East; to bolster a good Bush project, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR); to take real notice of Africa and other developing parts of our global village.
Today, those who want to end the scourges of poverty, disease and ignorance, those who want to promote justice, peace and greater tolerance among different faiths are celebrating because Barack Obama is the new President of the United States.
By Desmond Tutu