A Day to be Proud Of

Date: Tuesday, November 4, 2008 11:38 PM
Category: Allgov Blogs
One evening in 1964, when I was in high school, a man telephoned our home and warned that he was coming to our house to kill my father. What had my father, Irving Wallace, done to provoke someone to want to murder him? He had written a novel, The Man, about a black man who becomes President of the United States.
Forty-four years after that night, we really will have a black president, not in a work of fiction, but in real life. In The Man, the hero becomes president through the law of succession. Real life has turned out even better because the majority of American voters chose Barack Obama to be their president.
Who are the big winners in this event? Obama, of course, because he will now wield an enormous amount of power. The Democrats, too, because a lot of money that has been filling Republican pockets the last few years will now migrate into Democratic pockets.
But I think the real winners are the American people. We Americans like to think of ours as a special nation, one that inspires and sets an example for other nations. In this case, this is exactly what is happening. 
No matter what kind of president Obama turns out to be, the American people have demonstrated that, despite a long history of racial discrimination, they could choose as their leader a member of a racial minority. Not only does this raise enormously the prestige of the United States around the world, but it serves as a true inspiration for other nations. The United States is hardly the only country in the world that faces problems of racial and ethnic conflict. Around the world, hundreds of millions, if not billions, of people are thinking that if the American people can overcome their differences and elect a member of a minority, maybe we can overcome similar differences in our country.
The nature of an Obama presidency remains a mystery, and the United States is still, by no means, a racial and ethnic utopia; but to progress, in the space of one lifetime, from death threats about a fictional black president to electing a real one…that’s something we Americans can be proud of.

Latest News

Texas Included State’s Drunk Drivers and Child Support Evaders in Tally of “High-Threat” Immigrant Border Arrests

Texas classified more than 1,800 offenders arrested near the border by highway troopers in 2015 as "high threat criminals." But not all live up to that menacing label or were anywhere close to the border — and they weren't caught entering the country illegally, as Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who is Texas' chairman for GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, has suggested. Crimes lumped in with suspected killers and human traffickers were speeding teenagers and harmless hit-and-runs.   read more

For-Profit School Continued Predatory Practices for 17 Years after Whistleblower Gave Evidence to U.S. Government

Not everybody was a loser in this tale. ITT’s top five executives received princely compensation over the period — $117 million in total. Lobbyists for ITT also benefited. The company has spent almost $1 million on lobbying since 1998. “They were abusing that system for years and ripping off the government for billions of dollars and we brought that to light," said whistleblower Graves. He said he was frustrated by the outcome of his case. and wonders what had taken the government so long.   read more

New Jersey Senate Passes Bill Requiring State to Forgive Student Loan Debt of Deceased Borrowers

After her son was murdered, Marcia DeOliveira-Longinetti requested that the state agency forgive her son’s student loans, which total about $16,000. The agency refused, requiring Ms. DeOliveira-Longinetti to continue to pay off his debt. Nearly a dozen people testified before legislators at a Senate hearing in August, saying they were troubled by the agency’s loan program. Several families described how they had resorted to bankruptcy to manage their high debt burden.   read more

U.S. Sees Increase in Number of Americans with Bank Account Access

The portion of Americans who do not have a bank account, known in industry jargon as the "unbanked," declined to 7% in 2015 from 7.7% in 2013. The improvements came mostly from households making less than $15,000 a year and among minority populations. Another way of looking at it: For every 10 households that were unbanked in 2013, one of those households is now banked. "The improving economy no doubt impacted these numbers in a positive way," FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg said.   read more

U.S. Ambassador to Brazil: Who Is P. Michael McKinley?

In Africa, he helped pressure the government to sign a natural gas pipeline deal with Enron. McKinley went to Afghanistan in September 2013 as deputy ambassador. He was nominated as ambassador the following May and was confirmed in December 2014. During his tenure there, McKinley was the face of U.S. efforts to rebuild Afghanistan even as fighting continued in some areas. He also promoted the expansion of women’s rights in that nation.   read more
see more...