Much has been written about Barack Obama as the first African-American to be elected President of the United States — still, I figure that I’d better get in my two cents’ worth, partly because I did vote for Obama. And you’re hearing this from a registered Republican — and no, I’m not kidding.
If anything else, 2008 will be best remembered for a presidential race that not only mattered, but also caught the attention of both the United States and the rest of the world — and President-elect Obama was and will remain one reason why. After all, Obama pretty much dominated the political spotlight this year — perhaps more than even Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin — and not just because he was the first African-American presidential candidate (and eventually President-elect). Obama brought a fresh approach to his presidential campaign — just as Franklin Roosevelt did in 1932, and John F. Kennedy almost thirty years later. And like FDR and JFK, I hope that Obama will inject new blood into the Presidency and bring about the kind of positive changes that our country really needs, given the fact that we’re currently facing the worst financial crisis since the New York Stock Market crash in late-October 1929 that brought about the Great Depression. If Obama succeeds in not only putting the United States back on its feet, but also restoring its place as a major world power and regaining the respect of other nations, he’ll be a credit to not only his own race (and hopefully shattering for good the racial and ethic prejudices that’s been an unfortunate part of American life for over 200 years), but also the rest of the human race. Let’s hope so.
Let the Obama era begin.
— John Lavernoich
November 9, 2008