Obama and Politics of Blackness

Election of President Barack Obama as the first black president of the United States of America is a subject that has elicited numerous views globally. There is a belief that Obama’s candidacy and election signify the post-racial America. In other words, U.S. has reached a state where it is devoid of racial discrimination and prejudice. The divisive history of racism in America is thought to have ended. On the other hand, there are those who suppose that the presidency of President Obama has led to further ethnic and racial divisions. The paper supports the notion that though the country still experiences some elements of ethnic and racial divisions, the election of President Obama presents a sign of post-racial America.

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Firstly, it is imperative to explain that the US politics in the twentieth century challenged social and cultural inequalities. It particularly advocated political change that could propagate the American dream into a reality. Consequently, it is likely that the ascension of Obama to power is a show of messianic position for the American people as evidence of change (Pitcher, 3). It demonstrates the unalterable racial ordering of the U.S politics. Having appealed to a large white race electorate, Obama demonstrated that the American citizens had grown beyond betrayal in line with race. They had reached a point where color did not matter. It was historical to see millions of white people line up for voting for a black president (Dhanerawala, 3).

Consequently, it is clear that Barack Obama’s color of skin is of great relevance to the United States politics. It acts as a modulating factor that can attract both races of people in the US. The post-racial era has been further illustrated by President Obama’s structural campaign. In the past years, a black candidate was marginalized. In fact, most of his support was drawn from the black community at the margins of the American electorate. Nevertheless, it was through Obama’s campaign that many white voters protected their interests. Moreover, the US history is embedded with the idea of a black president as a symbolic marker of overcoming racism.

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The election of Obama further invalidates the explicit and outright marginalization of the black community. It shows a qualitative new class of the maturing American Black middle class. According to Walters’s (6) statistics, most African Americans feel that the election of President Obama has positively influenced their well-being. In fact, for them, life has become better.

Though some have refuted the argument that Obama’s influence in America as a post-racial state has raised, their arguments can also be criticized. For instance, Pitcher’s (4) argument that the election of a single individual cannot illustrate the post-racial nature of the state can be easily criticized. According to him, Obama could be a distinct case that may not occur in subsequent elections. The argument is emphasized by the reality that Obama himself has transcended his own blackness. In other words, Obama has overcome the black politics mentality and embraced knowledge free of bias and prejudice of the black mind. In fact, Walters observes that Obama is viewed as a race-neutral and pragmatic politician who has gone beyond the limitations of race. However, Obama being one of the American citizens could still be a show of a society whose members have overcome the limitations of race (Walters, 14).

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In conclusion, it is clear that the candidacy and election of President Obama will continue to provoke debates in different parts of the world. The main question, however, remains the same: whether America has entered the post-racial state that has been a dream for most American leaders. While there are diverse arguments that can be fronted, time is a factor to affirm the long-term effect of Obama’s presidency on America’s racial state.

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