News

New York's Harlem Joyful About Obama Victory

Multimedia

Audio

Senator Barack Obama has been chosen by the American people to be the 44th president of the United States. President-elect Obama is also the first African American to become the nation's chief executive. This historic milestone was celebrated with intense hope and pride in Harlem, the mostly black New York City district many consider to be the cultural capital of African American life. VOA's Adam Phillips was there.

The thousands of African Americans who gathered on 125th Street, Harlem's main thoroughfare, to celebrate President-elect Obama's decisive victory on Tuesday night could not contain their joy that one of their number had been chosen to be the lead the nation.  A young woman named Joy had come from Brooklyn, a subway ride away.

"We are so excited.  Black people are just overwhelmed and very grateful.  We worked very, very hard.  We are just happy to see a black man in office.  I thought it would never happen," she said.

This young man said Obama's election made the future brighter for all African American youth.  

"Everybody born after this day is gonna grow up thinking they can do anything they want.  The greatest man in the world - that's the president.  I could be that way in 20 years.  I ain't old yet! " he exclaimed.

Jareau Hall, another Harlemite, seemed calm. Yet his broad grin said it all.

"I'm trying not to get too emotional," he said.  "This was probably one of the best nights of my life, right now. [And] being here in Harlem, I don't think anything could really compare."

"Mark," from the neighboring borough of Queens, was also jubilant, but recognized that lots of hard work lies in store for the new president-elect - and for all Americans.

"It feels good to be a black man, tonight," he said.  "This is an opportunity that I'm sharing.  I'm glad I'm able to see this today, my brother.  I know it's going to be a long time to get everything back on the path, but I believe he got the energy and the power to do it."       

With a solid bloc of fellow Democrats in Congress, Barack Obama will have much the political clout necessary to enact an ambitious agenda to deal with the many challenges he will face.  He will also draw on the public good will new presidents traditionally enjoy early in their administrations.  As the nation looks ahead to January 20, when President-elect Obama takes office, one thing is clear: he's got the people of Harlem behind him all the way. 

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs