Tuesday, January 20, 2009


As I write this, a few hours from now Barack Obama will be called 'Mr. President'. If you haven't heard already (just about every news outlet has blatantly pointed this out...), this will be a great day in history. Millions will witness it, and some of those people who were one of Dr. Martin Luther King's audience members over 40 years ago will be part of Obama's inauguration audience.

So what do I think about Obama? Well, I still have to learn how to be one of his supporters or cult members (sorry, that's too harsh...). I'm sorry, it's just I know its a historical moment, but I'm sick of seeing people looking at him as 'the Saviour' and people trying to make money off him. But, as an American, I gotta support my President and his decisions. I see him as a guy I would watch baseball with, and have an intellectual conversation with. Of course, I disagree with some of his views. But everyone in the big cities cast their vote and 'change' was voted in. If you're curious about what I just said, I'll give you a link to show you what I'm talking about. Anyway, I'll give Obama a chance. He may have the right answers. I know it will take half his term to clean up the economic mess, if he were to do so. Let's all 'hope'. The one thing that has crossed conservative minds is that homeland security may be a threat again.

I remember the day after Obama won the election, I was getting off work at 6 in the morning and I asked one of my African-American friends/co-workers how he felt about Obama. He started cheering and clapping in the empty restaurant. But then he said, "It's awesome. But if Obama f***s it all up, then he's going to make us all look bad. What I mean by that is all black people...". I totally disagree. I already see him winning in 2012. But if something were to happen, it may all change. His administration members may not know how to handle stuff like a natural disaster or a terrorist attack, and I would see his points go down. Then again, he may still have support from the American people. I'll put it this way, the media will be on his side (at least CNN and PMSNBC).

Overall, I'm proud to witness the first African-American achieve its way to the highest office. During my time at SIUE, I took two Black American History classes. I took those classes, not because they were for my minor, but I wanted to learn how to relate and talk to black people and learn from their backgrounds. I ended up learning twice as much as I did when I was in high school. Did you know that several Presidents after Andrew Johnson had at least one black person in their cabinet? One of those that didn't was Woodrow Wilson, who was arguably known as the 20th century's most racist president. Did you also know that half of the men that founded the NAACP were white people? As required reading, we read 'Warriors Don't Cry' by Melba Beals (who was one of the Little Rock Nine). It's hard to imagine that over five decades ago, it was very difficult for African-Americans to get an education. It all comes down to this day that we have now judged by character, not by color, as according to MLK's dream.

So, good luck to Obama, and he shall not let us down!

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