Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I grew up knowing a family. The father was a doctor. A funny guy he was strict with his kids but loving. Generous. All the other kids in the neighborhood adored him. The mother was a lawyer. It was clear she was the boss of the family. But she was also fun and caring. Everyone knew to go to her if you had a real problem.

They were afluent but not outwardly rich. Intelligent. They were keenly aware of what was happening in the world. I remember passing through their living room and seeing world events on the TV.

Their kids were typical. Often well meaning but making the common mistakes of youth. Usually getting into some kind of trouble but never anything serious. They were like all the other kids on the block. Occasionaly overly virtous.

They were you and me. They were American Pie. They were the best we strive to be.

And the way....they were black. And they were completely fictional (this family at least).

If you haven't figured it out I am talking about the Huckstables (The Cosby show).

As I watched Barack Obama and his family last night I found myself thinking back to all those evenings I invited the Huckstables into my living room.

Over the next few months you will hear the pundits discuss the luminaries of the civil rights movement. I would like to add Bill Cosby's name to the discussion.

Without him, I feel relatively certain that white America would never have had the courage to vote for a black president.

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