The legacy of Barack Obama

The+Obama+family

The Obama family

Barack Hussein Obama II made history when he was elected President of the United State of America in 2008. Opinions aside, that one fact cannot be denied. When a black man was elected to the highest public office in the world, it was bigger than politics.

     Think about it. George Washington was a slave owner. Thomas Jefferson had a plantation in Monticello that was run using “free labor.” Some claim that Harry Truman himself was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. The White House, the home of the President and his family, was built on the backs of the slaves. So when a black man stepped over the threshold of the White House, when he took the office that his predecessors had prevented people of color from contributing to, it meant something.

     When Barack Obama was elected president, the United States was irrevocably altered.

     Throughout his presidency, the Obama family was the epitome of class. Michelle Obama, an Ivy League graduate, was always cool, calm, and collected even when she had reason not to be. The Obama daughters, Sasha and Malia, were everything a teenage daughter in America is supposed to be. Even the dogs the family adopted were seemingly perfect for the First Family.

     President Obama brought the country out of a recession. He was able to restore the job market and help those unemployed to get back on their feet. He handled international relations admirably and negotiated a partisan capital to the best of his ability.

     Most remarkably, the President was able to do all of this while fielding criticism about his race, his heritage, his hometown, and his name. There were pundits who claimed the President was not born in the United States because of his skin color, those who thought he and his wife were lesser because they did not come from glowing places, and even those who called him a terrorist due to his name. This is ignoring the fact that being a Muslim, which the President is not, does not make a person a terrorist.

     President Obama defied all of the odds to take the highest office this nation allows. He navigated the harsh world of politics with ease even when it would have been easy to break. This first African American President of the United States was a model of determination and excellence.

     Now it’s up to us, those who believed in the president from the start, to make sure his work was not done in vain. It is up to us to continue the work of Barack Obama and provide a standard of excellence to follow even when those higher up give a different appearance.

     From here on out, it’s on us.