A friend told me this story. A white friend. Some volunteers were in Appalachia doing door-to-door canvassing, an integral part of the Obama campaign's massive and successful get-out-the-vote effort.
A white woman answered at this one home. When asked who she planned on voting for in the presidential race, she yelled to her husband somewhere else in the house and asked: "Who we gonna vote for?" He answered back: "We're gonna vote for the n-----r." She then turned back to the volunteer and repeated matter-of-factly: "Oh, we're gonna vote for the n-----r."
Knowing how stories can get reshaped in multiple re-tellings, this one could wind up being apocryphal. But in hearing that story – even as I cringed at the n-word – I couldn't help but think civil rights leader Martin Luther King would see this as a partial fulfillment of the dream he expressed so eloquently 45 years ago.
To read the complete column, visit The Charlotte Observer.