Politics

Coffee and Hope

 

Obamaa Parked in Front of Starbucks, Credit: Steve Proffitt/NPR

hide caption—Steve Proffitt and Alex Chadwick We've been spending a lot of time at a Starbucks about 15 minutes from our studios. It's an interesting place, for a few reasons. Among others, this is a Magic Johnson Starbucks (there are 110 of them across the country), and maybe THE Magic Johnson Starbucks. This outlet is at a busy intersection in the Ladera Heights neighborhood, home to many comfortable black families in L.A. And it has a large, outdoor seating area, where people hang out, sometimes all day long. On election day we met a young woman who said she was saving the receipts for every item she bought that day, and anything else she could find with the date on it, November 4, 2008. She remembered a lesson from her junior year in high school, about Japanese-Americans and the World War II internment camps. It's when she realized she was living in a hyphenated country; everyone is a something-American. Not today, she said. Today, I'm an American...and that's all. We met a woman who said she'd been invited to at least a half-dozen election night parties. We overheard a group of retired folks arguing about the economy. And mostly, we saw a lot of smiles on the faces of people who were filled with hope. Today, we are back at Magic Johnson Starbucks, talking to people about their reaction to the results. One of the questions we are going to ask: If your cell phone rang, and it was Barack Obama, what would tell him he should do first?

OBAMAA parks in Ladera Center. Credit: Steve Proffitt/NPR

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