Obama's Audacity of Hope Contagious in Africa
By Ben Nakomo,
US Senator, Barack Hussein Obama has officially declared his candidacy for the US 2008 Presidential elections. With an appeal to his generation to transform America, the Illinois Senator said on Saturday, February 10, 2007 that he's running for the Democratic presidential nomination. Obama made the announcement at the Old State Capitol, where Abraham Lincoln in 1858 called for Unity against slavery and charting of a common course for all of America's citizenry. Obama's bold attempt to take on America's political establishment and gunning for a whitehouse under the tutelage grip of caucasian special interest groups, is carefully being watched by political analysts and commentators in the African continent.
Obama, 45, who has been a U.S. senator for two years and served seven years in the Illinois legislature, acknowledged his inexperience, and stated; "I recognize there is a certain presumptuousness in this, a certain audacity to this announcement," "I know I haven't spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington. But I've been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change." In his view, "the failure of leadership, the smallness of our politics" has held America hostage. "The time for that politics is over. It is true. It's time to turn the page, right here and right now," he said.
Obama had a date with history on Saturday, February 10, 2007 at Springfield, Illinois. He joins other Democratic candidates that include New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and John Edwards, the 2004 vice presidential nominee. "Let us be the generation" to reshape the economy, end poverty, tackle the health care crisis and free America "from the tyranny of oil," Obama said. "Most of all, let's be the generation that never forgets what happened on that September day and confront the terrorists with everything we've got."
Obama is an intellectual by every indication. His assuidity and grasps of issues belittles the mumbling and fumbling slips of the former Governor of Texas, George W. Bush, who became the President of the United States . The theme of Obama's speech reflected the title of his best-selling 2006 book, The Audacity of Hope. "It's humbling, but in my heart I know you didn't come here just for me," he said to the cheering crowd. He castigated the Bush administration with its tyranical foreign policy. "You came here because you believe in what this country can be. "In the face of war, you believe there can be peace. In the face of despair, you believe there can be hope," he said. "In the face of a politics that's shut you out, that's told you to settle, that's divided us for too long, you believe we can be one people, reaching for what's possible, building that more perfect union."
Obama, born of a Kenyan father and a caucasian American mother, truely has the audacity to bid for the highest office in America. Obama, the Senate's only African-American, traced his personal history as a $13,000-a-year community organizer in Chicago's black neighborhoods, civil-rights lawyer and professor of constitutional law. It was among Chicago's poor, he said, "that I received the best education I ever had, and where I learned the meaning of my Christian faith."
It is time for a new generation in America to recoup America's spent capital and influence around the world. Every time the nation has faced great challenges, Obama said, "A new generation has risen up and done what's needed to be done. Today we are called once more — and it is time for our generation to answer that call. For that is our unyielding faith — that in the face of impossible odds, people who love their country can change it." That's what Lincoln understood, he said. "He had his doubts. He had his defeats. He had his skeptics, he had his setbacks. But through his will and his words, he moved a nation and helped free a people." Africa is watching the Obama trail to the White House. Will it be an African-American first?
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