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Wednesday, May 12

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News Thu Nov 06 2008

Our Native Son

Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Barack Obama's victory during post-election coverage on ABC:

"This is Joe Lewis, it's Jackie Robinson, and it's sort of the opposite of what the great African-American novelist Richard Wright wrote in his book, I think it was Native Son, where the character, Bigger, in that book is walking down the street, I think it was written about the South Side of Chicago, and he had no hope and he had no prospects and he knew that growing up African-American in an urban area, in a society that was governed and dominated by whites, that at the time legally prevented him from having opportunities, he didn't have the kind of hope and opportunity that he should have had. And there's a plane that flies overhead in that novel and he looks up at that plane and he says, 'Fly that plane, white boy. Fly that plane,'* because he knew it couldn't possibly be an African-American flying the plane in the late 1940s. Now look where we are today. And if that young boy in that novel was walking down the street today, he could look up to the sky and he could dream big dreams and all he's got to do is see Barack Obama and he could say, 'Everything's possible in America if you believe and if you're willing to work hard and believe in the American dream.' And as President-elect Obama just said, 'Yes we can.'"

[*Actually, Bigger says, "I could fly one of them things if I had a chance." But I only know that because I looked it up, so I'll cut the Governor some slack.]

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