The Personal is Political

OK, if you have not already seen The Speech, you really should take the time to check it out. It is long, but damn! I mean, just, damn!

Many, many other people have made much more eloquent and moving commentaries on the speech so here are a few I really liked:

From Crooked Timber “Obama seemed to me to be challenging America to be great, which is a very different and much riskier thing, as well as something I find much more compelling and attractive.”

From The NY Times “What is evident, though, is that he not only cleared the air over a particular controversy — he raised the discussion to a higher plane.”

From Mother Jones “Obama was not condemning anyone. His key to post-racial transformation? End the blame game. In the end, he argued, black-and-white matters less—or should matter less—than issues of class and economic power…”

And my absolute favorite response, from Kung Fu Monkey

As we’ve seen, this speech hasn’t shut down the fear-mongering and the “Swiftboating” that is coming from his political enemies (and unfortunately one has to include the Clintons and their Democratic supporters in the camp) but I do believe that he has raised the level of the discussion. At least he’s spoken intelligently and with great courage about a topic that is still very much alive and well in this country, despite what folks on both sides of the political fence would like to think.

Obviously this issue is more than academic or theoretical to us, both because of my own background and because we hope to be the parents of a child of another race some day. We know that we will become a conspicuous family at that point, with the responsibility both to protect our child from and educate her about the realities of racism in the US.

Actually, I believe this is the responsibility of all parents, whether white, black, brown, mixed race etc. Racism doesn’t end unless we we acknowledge that it exists and still has a major influence in America. Only then can we work to solve the problem.

I have come to adulthood in an America that is better than the one my parents grew up in. It is my sincerest wish to hand over to our children an America that is better than we found it. I hope to bring our daughter into an America that will be kinder to her than it was to me and my siblings.

This is the ideal that Obama sees and speaks about: that America is not perfect but we can make a change for the better. And it is because of this ideal that I support Obama.

So, getting off my little soap box now. More another time I am sure.

Blessings all,


PS: yes I know I’ve come to the show a little late but as the issue isn’t going away I still think it’s relevant. Read, think then ACT!


Leave a Reply