The United States Presidential Election of 2008 was one of the most important in history. George W. Bush was completing his second and final term in office, a tenure that was marked by the attacks on Sept. 11th, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the fall of Saddam Hussein, and the economic meltdown. America was ready for a new start, but who would it be? John McCain, the former Naval aviator who was tortured as a POW in Vietnam? Or Barack Obama, the African-American junior senator from Illinois, who was extremely eloquent, but lacked a military background, in contrast to many former presidents before him, and even McCain himself? The political landscape in America was hot—people were more divided than ever because of the issues on the table. Yes, racism had reared its ugly head many times, but, the beast was only so big.
Young people came out in huge numbers to vote on that November day, participating in an event that so many politicians and soldiers had fought for our right to do. With that, America elected Barack Obama as the first African-American president of the United States. It was a historic moment, regardless of who you voted for, or even if you were too young to vote: something had happened that had never happened before—and people filmed reactions on their phones around the world. Each video is unique, each threaded together by the same unique event. Though there is no specific video to play above the rest, each one is important, if not for us, but for future generations to look back on, to witness what this event meant to the people of our time.