President Obama's recent European Tour (12 cities, each one sold out, rocked them all) has been criticized for every shake, step, or courtesy in or out of place. Amid photos of bows/bends and molestation of queens, it was this quiet photo that stood apart. Of all the so-called breaches of protocol, this one spoke volumes. A black royal cop and President Obama shook hands in passing, as he entered the halls of British royalty. The significance lies in the demonstration of brotherhood. Without preamble, they recognized and acknowledged the perspective and hope virtually universal among people of color. That officer may have never given a second thought to his color in relation to his position, but when a black man came through those gates as President of the United States, he recognized the level of authority being held that was previously unavailable to any black.
Around the world, people of color in any position of authority will look towards a level above and eventually see a white line. Every black corporal has their white Sergeant, black principal has their white superintendent, black secretary of state to their white president. Throughout the history of racial slavery, white supremacy and bigotry have had their institutions breached as humanity evolves, slowly but surely. By shaking his hand, Obama recognized that cop had stood at that post day after day as another black worker in a white institution until he, as the first black president, broke the color line. When Jackie Robinson made it into the Major League, there was pride among blacks as if "we can play professional baseball now." As they shook hands, they were seeing it- a black man can reach the highest elected post. Despite the social stigma associated with celebrating President Obama's race, it happens. The sooner people accept the taciturn brotherhood affiliated with race, the sooner we can expand it to a human sense of brotherhood. Kudos to these to men, for bucking expectations and relating to one another.