Looking at the electoral votes map of the USA makes a very emphatic point - just because everyone you know where you live is voting one way does not mean the majority of the country is doing the same. It is dramatic that the coasts are so different from the middle and South, and we on the coasts just can't comprehend how the others don't understand. Some people at work are wearing black in "mourning" for the next four years. I think that's a bit extreme, and I was disappointed too, but our elections are based on a majority, and the majority has spoken. Perhaps the country is just too large? But what would you do - split the country in three for each coast vs. the middle? That's not very practical now, is it?
I do think that the much higher voter turnout this year was impressive and a step in the right direction. It wouldn't have been nearly as close I think without the higher turnout. With people so active for this election, perhaps the voices can be heard more during the next four years and have an effect on how the Bush administration acts. A long shot, though, since he has no chance of being elected again, so they'll probably just do what they want.
Personally, I was discouraged the whole way along, since I felt I was faced with a similar choice as 2000 - neither major candidate impressed me as a future leader or seemed to represent me - this time I voted for change, but I had the sinking feeling all along that we at the coasts weren't enough to combat the Midwest and South, so I wasn't really surprised.
"We have the chance for a mini-revolution every four years"...I was told this in history class in highschool, and I have always remembered it. In 2008 everything will be up in the air again.