Barack Obama: Nominee
Yes, The SuperSpade is brand new again. I’ll write about that specifically later, but I am elated that the first post on this new website is about a genuine Black History, American History moment.
[After giving his wife dap,] Barack Obama stepped to the podium and declared himself the undisputed [by everyone except Hillary Clinton] Democratic nominee for the President of the United States. In the same moment, he made broad statements about who he is, what he wants, and what he believes, and coupled those with thanks to Hillary Clinton and harsh words for hs Republican opponent, John McCain. I actually don’t think it was his best speech of the campaign thus far. But nevertheless, on the biggest night of his political life, he did not disappoint.
The next President
I have been neither a passionate nor overly ardent supporter of Senator Obama to this point. He’s not as progressive a candidate as I feel this country needs in my view. He’s not as outspoken on race as I think he should be. However, most importantly, tonight was confirmation that he is a candidate that the Democratic Party and then entire American electorate is indeed ready to consider and vote for.
As a progressive, as an activist, as a writer, and as a Black man I fight back tears in the same way that Barack Obama had to do in the beginning of his history-making speech tonight while the cheers and chants drowned out his microphones like the roar of a rushing waterfall. Tonight I write and work with the same vigor and recommitment that I’ve observed in the number of my friends that have been working on/volunteering for the Obama campaign for many months. This vigor, this hope, this belief in the best possible future despite seemingly insurmountable odds has been reborn. 16 months ago nobody thought a Black man could even win a party nomination. 6 months from now, a Black man will be the President.
As for Clinton…
As for Senator Clinton, she embodies a politician in need of an intervention more than a recovering alcoholic needs an accountability partner. Her speech actually was a good one, at least on with Obama’s but her premise was so flawed and defiant that it virtually invalidated her message. At a time where the #1 priority for the Democratic party has to be how to win in November, she is still trying to angle her way to a win in August. It is this type of short-sightedness that so indicatively demonstrates her focus on winning political battles rather than fighting the right wars (pun intended).
As for John McCain…
Now that Obama has eclipsed all thresholds set by the Democratic party leadership, it is time for all of those that call themselves Democrats to fall in line behind him. That time actually began a while ago, but it is absolutely time to unite now. “Better late than never” is generally a true statement, but in the case of the Democratic party of 2008, the saying is more like “Unite now or else.” John McCain is a weak candidate, under-supported by the Republican base, and literally a gold-mine of low-hanging-fruit political gaffes, blunders, and inconsistencies. A united Democratic party with a candidate focused on its Republican challenger can mop the floor with John McCain on issue after issue after issue. Obama again set the Democratic frame for this debate in his speech tonight. He needs 100% of the party behind him in order to execute on it and win.
The unprecedented political organization built from scratch by Obama and his leadership team now have the chance to put their efforts to work on the electorate at large. The fundraising machine will be in full swing, a necessary weapon that will be needed to combat the Republican party’s fundraising apparatus. This organization of energized individuals is what sets Obama apart, what differentiates him, what squarely identifies him as the “change” guy. I want the “change” guy to use this machine to use this organization for more than getting out the vote this election season. I want to see this organization be the test bed for bottom-up, consensus policy proposals, campaign [and ultimately government] openness and transparency, and most importantly agents for advancing the populist, progressive agenda.
Having any large-scale, traditional political party do these things effectively is something we have not seen in generations, and it’ll be a hard effort to pull off. But then again, is that harder than getting a Black man elected? I say no.
So let’s celebrate tonight. Rejoice in history. Admire Senator Obama for accomplishing the inconceivable. Tomorrow, let’s get up, give each other dap, and get to work for real.
One Love. One II.