According to Dr. Gates, one of the defining things about President-elect Obama's campaign was that he took the focus off fear. "It was based on hope, on aspiration, appealing to the best," he says. "That's what's different about his campaign, and what's different about him as a man. He truly is inspiring."
Dr. Gates says his 95-year-old father called him on election night to talk about the moment's significance. "He said, 'Boy, this is the greatest day in the history of the Negro, and I'm glad I lived to see it.'" he says. "That's when I broke down.'"
David adds that he thinks President-elect Obama's campaign was also set apart by its connection to the younger generation, its use of technology and its reliance on the principles of community organizing. "I think it will go down as the best-run campaign in modern times, certainly going back the last 40 or 50 years," David says. "Because of community organizing, along with the Internet, 6 or 7 million people were out there working their tails off. They sent in small amounts of money. It worked."