Perhaps it doesn't equate on the level of a great disaster or a major event in the history of America, but it makes me a little sad.
Mostly, it makes me sad because I'm a cynic, and I'm pretty sure of two things. 1 - That the romanticism that has been attributed to Barack Obama is misplaced and 2 - That the Hillary Clinton campaign is much like a freight train that can only be stopped by someone placing themselves directly in the tracks.
I'm not going to sit here and tell you that John Edwards was some sort of savior to the nation or the perfect political candidate, but I will sit here and tell you that it's symptomatic of the political system in America that Edwards had to drop out of the race today, mostly because a major event is coming up on Tuesday, and the Democrats need to plow the road (or, in Edwards' words, "so that history can blaze its path") and America can best decide whom they will run against the Republicans in November.
I'm not sure who is the best qualified to be president. I know that in the last two elections, America didn't know either, or else we wouldn't be saddled with the man who sits in the chair today. My sadness is compounded by the fact that we repeated our mistake from 8 years ago 4 years ago and proved that history does indeed repeat itself.
Whomever we place in that chair next January isn't guaranteed to be any better than the man they are replacing - that I do know. Mostly, I think, Americans place too much emphasis on form over substance and often get the two confused, to the extent that John Edwards was referred to as the "Breck Girl" or some other appellation, merely because he appeared polished or perhaps too much so to be placed on a political stage. That notwithstanding, we refuse sometimes to look inside a candidate and prefer to look at the exterior, which is an all too easy sell.
My inherent cynicism is telling me that we are being sold a bill of goods with Mr. Obama and an old bill of goods with Mrs. Rodham-Clinton, and that perhaps neither one of them is overly qualified to inherit the office from a man who clearly isn't qualified to hold it.
But America, being what it is, will surely cling to one of them and perch them high on a pedestal until one of them does something that knocks them down, at which point the hue and cry will be "I told you so!"
Perhaps the best qualified have already abandoned the race, fighting either lack of funds or lack of popularity. Whatever, the race has come down to four - Obama, Clinton, McCain and Romney - one of which will occupy the office in less than 12 months.
As for me, I wish us all Godspeed.