It is difficult to belittle how important Obama's success is to many African Americans who lived through appalling bigotry only a generation ago. If they now feel they can participate in the political process, that may well be nothing other than a good thing. Accusations that the USA does not have a system that offers opportunity can be put to one side.
However Obama has promised much, on the basis that government can deliver economic recovery, jobs, health care and a better society. He has promised cheap energy, he has promised a new foreign policy that makes friends abroad.
Now he will be expected to deliver - with a majority Democrat Congress.
Will he discover how hard it is to get government to deliver anything? Will his supporters learn that relying on government to save them is a lost cause?
Hopes have been raised high - on the basis of little more than Obama being a star. How will his groupies react when they find he can't deliver?