On Sunday morning, I boarded a bus in Brooklyn with a group of approximately 40 citizens from New York, all African-American, each of whom, would not have missed for almost anything, the inauguration of President Barack Obama. I have been a photojournalist for the past 25 years, and have had the incredible opportunity to witness many of the worlds’ defining moments of modern history; the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of Communism in Eastern Europe in 1989; the end of apartheid in South Africa and Nelson Mandela walking out of prison in 1991; and most of the worlds’ conflicts of the past three decades. When our bus pulled into Maryland, on the eve of the inauguration, I knew after hearing the words of my fellow passengers, in some sense fellow pilgrims, that I was in the midst of a moment of history like maybe no other in terms of its historic magnitude, that I had ever witnessed and certainly not in America.
It is the words of these passengers, and those of many others that I have met in the past two days, that are representative of some degree of what this moment means. I would prefer to let them speak for themselves.
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