Suddenly the feeling that we are all witnessing history in the making seems real. We have become spectators to Barack Obama’s battle for the presidency.
By now we’ve all come to realize that Obama represents change; change in the way elections are run, change in the way politicians relate to their constituency, and what we hope will be change in America’s future. We know what Obama represents but the larger question still remains: who does Obama represent? This question has led to some of his harshest criticisms, claiming that he is “not black enough” or an “elitist snob who alienates women.” To some extent these critiques hold true. Obama is half black and half white. This forces him to bridge the racial chasm that has divided the country for over two hundred years in just a few months.
However, criticizing Obama’s skin color as being too dark or too light seems almost as petty as arguing whether the glass is half empty or half full. With a biracial presidential candidate, isn’t America taking a giant leap toward racial equality and understanding? Along with being judged by his skin color, Obama’s appeal to the masses is also judged by his education. It is undeniably true that he appeals to historically elitist crowds of intellectual liberals as well as the hipster youth culture that has glorified him as the hope for the next generation.
Yet, with college degrees taking the place of high school diplomas, shouldn’t our leader represent the higher education that for so many has become the new American dream? Finally with his defeat of democratic rival Hillary Clinton, Obama faces what may be his toughest battle yet: uniting a divided Democratic party under his banner of change.
Nevertheless, Obama marches onward, ever stronger, toward November with his popularity seeming to increase as time passes and his banner of change flying high. Because change, in the end, is not only what Barack Obama stands for, but what he represents. Obama’s campaign symbolizes the future of America. He stands for a country that sees beyond black and white, a country that is learning at an ever increasing rate, and a new kind of Democratic Party that represents men and women equally.
Suddenly we have all become aware that we are witnessing history in the making as Barack Obama battles not only for the presidency, but also for the future of America.