President Obama: Inaugural Openish Thread

January 20, 2009

I finally decided that I wanted to stand with the
arrival of the new majority. I wanted to join with millions in flipping
a big bird to those who insisted this country was "center-right." No, I
wanted to say, November 4th showed we are progressive-left. Perhaps
even my father.

Still I couldn't get the words of Rosa
Clemente -- the 36 year-old Green Party vice-presidential candidate who
was for many of us just as much a symbol of hope and progress and
change -- out of my head. "If we become the majority," she told me last
summer, "then we're going to have more people like us put into these
positions from really moving us towards justice."

As we look
at who Obama has brought in to his administration thus far, I'm struck
by the notion that perhaps even he doesn't yet recognize the
transformative possibilities of the new majority that elected him.

West said last March, "I told Obama that when he wins -- which I think he
will --I will celebrate for one day, I'll breakdance in the morning and
party in the afternoon. But the next day, I'll become one of his major

Two -- no, three -- views on today: one from the center and two from out here. (The second vid is from Jay Smooth, the blogger who broke the Hot 97 story, lo, these many years ago. The quote is from Jeff Chang, thanks to Momo.)

What do you think about the inauguration? Obama's address? What he said he was going to do? Are we swinging to the left or is Obama walking right? And are we now, officially, "post-race"?

Some rules: please try to stick to the topic of the inauguration and speculation about Obama's first days in office. I'd also like to hear your thoughts on what the significance to anti-racism will be, that we have just inaugurated our first black president. No grandstanding or agendas, please!




I find this post interesting claire, This inauguration has touched my soul in many ways. I never thought I would live to see this day, but I remain optimistic and hopeful for the future. I was inspired by Obamas speech and for the first time in my life, I want to be part of a grass roots movement, one that will make America better.After today, the honeymoon is over and the real fun begins, people like Sean Hanniity and his fans will do everything they can to blame Barrack Obama for Americas misfortunes, but a cool guy like Obama usually remains calm under pressure.Anti-racism, well its evident to say that the youth of America has spoken. I think racism will fade away with time, but its here for the moment and the 65 and older crowd that voted for Mcain and Hillary are not to happy, but they had their turn, now its ours.Obama Presidency has given hope to all minorities, not just African Americans. In the near future the possibilty of having an Asian or Latino President appears to be an imminent reality. All praises due to Barrack and his efforts for opening the doors up to us all.
Post-race? I am tired of hearing how Obama's victory means a post-racial America. (As if a post-racial society is something to strive for. I'm not interested in a society where we don't see race.) Post-racial is what clueless people say when they don't confront their own privilege and learn more about histories.As to the address, not the most inspirational, but the right tone, I think. (I also appreciated the shout-out to nonbelievers. Is that a first?)
i thought his speech was very appropriate... i was listening to npr and one guy (didn't catch his name) felt like obama should've "sang" aka be more inspirational, which i didn't agree with. we've obviously got our work cut out for us, and even though it is a joyous day, there's no reason to avoid the hard questions and concerns that most americans have on their mind. plus, the speech was inspirational! at least i thought so.
i have to say, as an Asian American, i was so happy thinking about a beautiful black family sleeping in the white house last night! i get teary eyed thinking about it. i never thought i'd see a minority president. it makes me feel proud.
I agree with what Anna said above.I'd add that the idea of the so-called post-racial is a laughable lie to begin with. For proof, see the murders of people like Oscar Grant or better yet, the imprisonment, assaults, and harrassments of Blacks, Latinos, First Nations, and yes even Asian-Americans by the US state in various guises from the War on Terrorism, to the War on Immigrants, to the War on Drugs, to the US Prison Industrial Complex (the largest in the world).But more important, the post-racial idea should NOT be a goal in the first place.What is the actual content of the "post-racial" idea as defined by mainstream America? The end of racism?Hardly.In practice, the very concept of the "post-racial" is just another political attempt to deny the reality of racism and White supremacy in the USA.Worse still, it will mean the denial of one's racial and ethnic heritage and the de facto assimilation into the White mainstream."Obama, King and Kennedy: Empire and the “End” of Racism An interview with Juan Santos"
Call it wishful thinking, but it would be great to live in a world that wasnt divided by race. Yet, the fact reamins that America was built on racism and hate.It would be nieve to fall into a trap that racism has ended in America when it hasnt.I do believe the ideologies between the old generation and the young generation differ. The youth of today are more accepting of each other, this wouldnt be the case 40 years ago. As the demographics in America change, so will the attitudes on dealing with race. I hope for the better