Obama: Keep Hope AliveCross-posted at MyDD

It seems whenever people talk about Barack Obama, they talk about hope. Here’s what Shakespeare said about hope:

“The miserable have no other medicine but only hope”. – (Measure for Measure: Act III, Scene I)

Enduring what will likely be seen as one of the worst U.S. presidencies in history has been miserable for thoughtful, observant Americans. Perhaps this is what makes this the right time for a man like Obama to dazzle us with his Audacity and Hope. Isn’t he in many ways the anti-thesis of Prince George the II? Obama was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He’s not stupid. He doesn’t stumble over his own tongue. His career has not been pre-programmed and handed to him on a golden plate. Obama represents all that Americans would like America to be — the land of opportunity in which it does not matter who your parents were or where they came from or how much money or friends they had. The America we all want to believe in promises that the content of your character is what will ultimately determine your success.

Quite a few other things happened this week. Like the Iraq Study Group release, for example. Or the fact that U.S. history was made when a Native American tribe bought a major multi-national corporation for the first time. The most diverse space shuttle crew ever is about to launch. Oh and by the way, the Iraq war is the number one issue for Latino U.S. citizens and non-citizens. That might be in part because Latinos account for the highest number of minority soldiers killed in Iraq.

But when the going gets tough, many Americans like to starfuck. Obama has caught fire as an antidote to what ails the nation. So let’s do a quick roundup of what people are saying about Obama at the crossroads of race and politics in America. Embrace the Obamarama.

Latino Bloggers and Obama

Kos wrote this week that “If Obama runs, he wins.” It’s not an endorsement, just an analysis. It sparked a fair amount of discussion online. Still, does Obama have a problem ahead with Latino voters? Even in Illinois, he took heat for his Nov. vote for the border fence.

Obama defended his position, saying “I am confident that, if you look at my track record, there hasn’t been a stronger friend to the Latino community than me.” Chicago’s CBS2 reports that Obama met with Latino leaders in Illinois and assured them that the vote was “part of a larger strategy”. (Source: VivirLatino)

A strategy perhaps to piss off Hispanic voters?

Black Bloggers and Obama

Progressive: African-American Opinion wonders if Obama will end up like Jesse. “Keep Hope Alive”, indeed. Republic of T has a good piece on the Obama Bandwagon:

And as it looks like Barack Obama is morphing into the Democrats’ Great Black Holy Hope for 2008, I guess I should start now working my way up to a rousing, enthusiastic, heartfelt, “He’ll do. Maybe.”

Hip-Hop: Byron Crawford takes a poll among his readers and finds that Obama has moved the needle on the possibility that an African-American could become president, but that most still think Hillary would beat Barack.

Conservative: Booker Rising discusses the complex relationship between the descendants of slaves and African immigrants that Sen. Obama’s rise has begun to highlight.

White Bloggers and Obama

Much of the Obama-mania writing on the progressive side seem to blend admiration and frustration. Each post has a little of both. Here are some examples. Feel free to disagree with me which way the posts seem to be leaning overall.

The Love: Jerome Armstrong, ArchPundit and Pastor Dan

Pastor Dan:
Changing the conversation is leadership for Obama. It changes the political situation – in a way that traditional partisans like the netroots might not grasp. People talk about Obama’s limitless ambition coupled with his odd lack of apparent passion for controversial topics. It’s all there, but the ambition isn’t to build a stronger party and the passion isn’t to craft legislation. It’s to fundamentally change the way Americans talk to one another, and the way they go about solving problems.

The Fear and Loathing: David Sirota, Chris Bowers and Matt Stoller

And true, Obama is not nearly as much of a party back-stabber as McCain was perceived to be in 2000. Additionally, he hasn’t won or lost a presidential primary, so we have no idea if the progressive movement will start thinking like a movement or not, or alternately, whether Obama will start using his platform to push a real agenda before he ignites a progressive backlash.

Asian Bloggers and Obama

I looked high and low for Asian-American opinion in the blogs on Obama and didn’t find much just yet. I did, however, find this letter to Time magazine right after the election:

To explain the mania surrounding Obama’s political career, Joe Klein quoted Shelby Steele, who said that “it’s all about gratitude” and that white Americans are enthusiastic about the Senator because he allows them to forget about “racial guilt.” As an Asian American who strongly supports Obama, where do I fall? Once again, a conversation on race has been reduced to white and black. I am energized by the Senator because he is smart, thoughtful and pragmatic. He represents me, a Democrat with strong Christian values. He knows the struggle of trying to attain the American Dream and the difficulties of being an ethnic minority in America. It’s as simple as that.

Chong-Hwa Lee
Derwood, Maryland, U.S.

I suspect this is a popular viewpoint among Asian-Americans, but you tell me: what’s up?

Finally, hip hop blogger Asian Provocateur out of New Orleans says: “oh yes Barack Obama should run for president. He’s all that AND A BAG OF DONUTS.”

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