On Nov 4, the citizens of the United States voted for their next president. Barack Obama won the elections. He will be the first African-American to be elected President of the United States. Obama was born in 1961 in Hawaii, United States. His father was a black Kenyan and his mother was a white American. He was raised partly in the United States and partly in Indonesia.
This election is quite a historic moment for the United States. To understand the significance, let’s take a step back to 1961 – the year Obama was born. Back then, blacks were not treated properly simply because of the color of their skin. In some parts of the United States, it was illegal for a white person to marry a black person, black and white students could not study in the same classroom, and blacks could not eat in the same restaurant as whites. So in electing Obama as President, America has come a long way!
The election had very high participation by US citizens. In fact, two citizens even sent in their votes from the International Space Station 220 miles (350 km) above Earth!
Obama’s victory was celebrated by many. Some French folks partied at the Eiffel Tower in France and champagne was poured when the election results were declared. People in a small town in Japan called “Obama” danced and sang. Indonesians cheered and celebrated. Sand sculptures of Obama’s face were made at beaches in Spain and India. Kenya declared the day after the election as a national holiday. Some babies born after the election have been named “Barack”.
The United States is a country known for having invented many many new products. Some you use regularly – toilet paper, blue jeans, zippers on your pants, coca-cola, crayons, band-aid, bubble-gum, scotch-tape, vacuum cleaners, popsicles, photocopiers, the computer mouse, chocolate chip cookies, iPods, cell phones – the list is quite endless!
Image Credits: senate.gov for Obama picture