There was a lot of waiting for over 200000 Michiganders trying to catch a gander of Barack Obama today at the Heart Plaza in downtown Detroit. I live about 1 mile away from Heart Plaza so my goal was to park as close as I could without getting stuck in after event traffic. I took Atwater drive and parked within a 20 minute walk. Now with this being Labor Day, I was hoping that the GM Starbucks was going to be not excercising the holiday. And much to my happiness there were four baristas ready to take my order. With a caramel macch I was out the door charged to document this event. First photo I took was of a group of pigeons that reminded me of the workers taking a lunch break over the skyline of New York photograph.
Getting closer to the crowd the noise made it clear that there were a lot of people waiting for Obama. You needed to arrive 3 hours earlier than I did to be able to get a golden ticket to get into the actual event. For the 40000 others like me who did not, we were stuck outside watching a huge screen. Obama took the stage and the crowd erupted. Just a few days after taking the nomination, I was expecting a go get’m speech from Obama. Instead in what seemed to be only 3 minutes, Obama hit the Detroit crowd with as few of words as he could have said to make his points clear and still woo us, the audience.
In between photographs I was pumping my fist in support after he opened up his speech with singing the Aretha song, “Chain Chain chain” which received a lot of clapping and started the mass to become a choir. From what I hear, Obama cut short his planned speech and instead asked for prayers for those in the Gulf Coast facing the wrath of Hurricane Gustav. After the moment of silence he stated that in this America, many of us are going through silent storms in our own lives. Even though the speech was only a few minutes long, I was further charged to vote for Obama. As quickly as it began it had ended and the exodus had begun.It was clear some supporters were disappointed in Obama’s small speech but I have a feeling he will be back here before the election.
McCain’s big week is being trumped in the news by the hurricane in the South. I have a friend, Garrett Hubbard, who is there right now covering the hurricane for USA Today.
For his second event in Michigan, Obama went to Monroe and began speaking a little after 1:15 p.m., telling the audience that he was again going to shorten his speech in light of Hurricane Gustav, just as he did earlier in Detroit.
He championed the labor movement saying “if it had not been for organized labor America wouldn’t have the middle class that we know. ”
Referring to Hurricane Gustav, Obama said “in times like these it’s a reminder that with all our differences, we are one America.