Saturday, November 08, 2008

What Obama as President means

In a little over two months, Obama will become president.
A historic moment, to be sure. The first black president. The first minority president period. That Americans voted for a black president is a good sign indeed. There may be some racist hold-outs (only three areas voted more for Kerry in 2004 than for Obama in 2008--Arizona, because of McCain, Alaska, because of Palin, and then this huge monster area in the deep South...) (Utah, by the way, gave Obama more votes than any other Democratic presidential candidate in a long time).
But racism, at least towards blacks, is not as big of an issue as it was even thirty or forty years ago.
Obama's presidency isn't just a sign of America overcoming racism.
Consider this--a guy with a Muslim father and the middle name of Hussein (repeated endlessly by schlobs on talk radio, like it was his first name or something...)
Seven years ago, 9/11. But Americans (well, most of them) are smart enough to realize that Obama, despite his Muslim middle name and his Muslim father, is in no way connected to that horrible incident. When we think of 9/11 we don't think "Muslim." We think "terrorist." That shows some maturity.
Obama's presidency is also proof that you don't have to come from a rich or powerful or political family to become president. You don't have to marry into money. You don't have to have fame and fortune from an acting career. You can be president even if you're not McCain or Romney, Bush or Clinton, Clinton or Bush, Gore or...well, you get the idea.
A kid who's parents never envisioned him as president--if they had, do you really think they would have named him Barack Hussein?--if a kid like that can grow up and become president, what else is possible? And that--that's what America's all about.

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