The Audacity of Hope

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The Audacity of Hope
Wasps are generally thought of as those stinging insects that fly around like bees; however, there is another meaning altogether. W.A.S.P as an acronym stands for White, Anglo-Saxon, and Protestant. To date, only one non-wasp was ever elected President of the United States, and he was assassinated from a grassy knoll and his brother who many thought could also be elected was shot before he even had the chance. So what makes Barack Obama, a non-white, non-Anglo-Saxon, and at one point non-protestant, think he can become the next President? His ability to overcome cultural obstacles in order to succeed.

Barack Obama has all the makings of a cultural melting pot. Born in Hawaii, to a Kenyan father, American mother, and then later raised in Indonesia. Obama attended school in Djakarta, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, and Boston. The schools for the last two cities were Columbia University and Harvard Law School respectively. While at Harvard, he became elected as the Harvard Law Review’s first black president in its 104 year history, and graduated magna cum laude with a J.D.

Obama’s official political career started in 1996 when he was elected to the Illinois state senate. But his biggest break into politics came at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, where he delivered his famous keynote speech. At the time, Obama was still serving as a state legislator of Illinois; however he was also running for an open seat as a U.S. Senator. Thanks in large part to his moving and compelling speech at the DNC, in 2004 Obama won his bid for U.S. Senator with 70% of the vote.

Barack Obama fought the cultural obstacles in America and aimed at the highest prize he could think of, and so in February of 2007, standing in front of the Old State Capital Building, a place where Lincoln once called home, Barack Obama announced his candidacy for President of the United States. This was not just an attempt to get America ready for the idea of a black...
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