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Barack Obama: Is America Ready for a Black President?


OK, there I said it. I've wanted to make this post for quite some time, but was apprehensive of the message that this would send to some supporters, either Democrat or Republican, male or female, black or white. But with my colleagues, friends and family, the question comes up repeatedly...is America really ready for a black leader?

Barack Obama is a stellar political leader who happens to be African-American. He has many significant attributes and leader traits much like the civil rights icon, Martin Luther King, Jr. and the assassinated president, John Kennedy. His charisma, style and carefully articulated use of words has the ability to motivate hope and change in those that listen. As I listen to his speeches, watch his debates and read the news stories on his campaign, I am convinced that this man is who America needs to set it on the right track. He has the passion and drive, knowledgeable on the issues and the right connections to make things happen. But the question remains…is America really ready for a Black president?

We live in a country where there is a burgeoning of freedom and equality for all, in different cultures, races, and sexes. We are living in a time very different from the climate of the 1960s and an era where people stayed on their “own” side. We have made many strides towards becoming a nation of equality, but no matter how you look at it and how you analyze it, we are STILL living in a time where discrimination is practiced and lines are still drawn in the sand. Even in our modern times, hate disguises itself in various ways; Internet hate discussion forums, job discrimination, cultural stereotypes and others. Yes, we have come a long way, but there is so much more to do to educate and sensitize America. Are we ready?

Barack Obama represents all that we have accomplished in over 50 years of working towards becoming a sensitive nation and a fair nation. Not once in political history has there been a serious African-American, or any other non-white candidate, for the office of the presidency. Yes, I remember Jesse Jackson, but I’m talking about a serious candidate with serious views and on a trek to change things, seriously. Barack Obama represents what this country needs and what we equate to there being “time” for a change in our political climate and in our country. With the ongoing war, issues on healthcare and social security and global warming, people are not only ready but they are starving for a change. But, are we ready?

Obama is a viable, real and serious candidate for the most important job in the White House. I believe that his passion is true to wanting change and the ability to bring about that change. Barack is young and has a young family. He has even said that he had aspirations of becoming the president of the United States ever since he was a young boy. Talk about dreaming! I also believe that if he were elected as president, the country would experience a remarkable difference in international affairs, race relations and social issues in this country. Yes, we need change. Yes, we need adjustments on social issues. Yes, we need someone who knows what they're doing.

But, is Barack the answer to our prayers?

Are we ready?

7 Comments/Trackbacks

Are we ready? I do not know. But I think Obama's campaign seems very impressive. Ambitious -- I saw it on him. Once when I read one of his books 'The Audacity of Hope', I did know it: http://dealstudio.com/searchdeals.php?deal_id=39018&ru=279 , His analysis of the world situation, from the US, to Indonesia, to Africa, to Iraq shows a much deeper understanding than would be evident from the debates. a Black President? Now I really think his ambition will make him big chance.....

Lisa, thank you for your comments. Ambitious, he is definitely. But will ambition and charisma be enough to get him the presidency?

I'd like to think that Americans are ready for a drastic change in leadership and that race, gender, religion, etc. doesn't matter. It remains to be seen if that's the popular opinion or not though.

Susan, I too would like to think that race, gender and religion are of no consequence. But, is that reality?

I don't think its a question of race, gender, and religion being of no consiquence but rather an issue of whether or not focusing on those issues really does us any good. I've heard people say that the only reason Oprah is backing Obama is because he's Black but since she has never demonstrated such an inclination, I think that's just their own racism showing through. Still others say that since Obama mixed and grew up middle class that he is not Black at all (quite ignorant if you ask me).

As far as I can see, Obama's race is just as big an issue as Clinton's gender - they are the most viable candidates and Clinton is actually less viable because she is such a polarizing figure. She says and does things that look and sound like a politician playing her audience as opposed to appearing sincere. And maybe she is sincere in her desire for power but she lacks the charisma necessary to motivate people, which is an important thing for any leader to possess.

I read an article on Newsvine (it was deleated or I'd include the link) criticizing Michelle Obama for saying that her husband would not allow us the citizens to return to our lives as usual, that we would be forced out of our comfort zones and expected to participate in "healing the nation." In fact there was quite a bit of criticism from right wing pundits and media. My question is why is that a bad thing? Isn't that exactly what the best leaders do? The best leaders I've ever had the honor to work with were great at inspiring people with their vision, pushing them out of their complacency and making change happen because they had the people behind them. This is the type of leadership we need.

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As a white man, I am ready to see a black as president, and I've actually been ready for quite some time now. The difference with Obama is that he is not a "token black contender." In other words, he didn't enter the race on race, he entered it on his own political savy and character.

It will truly be a great day in America if Obama stands on that innaugural podium next January. It will heal decades of racism, intolerance, and slavery. It will hearken forth our own declaration of indepedence, reiterating that all men are created equal.

It would close an evil chapter in our nation's history, and begin a new one. Perhaps this chapter would start out with litte black boys holding the hands of little white girls, walking down the street. In the chapter that previously closed, this was just a dream. It is up to us to make it a reality.

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