Obama speaks about black and white

Published on OpenDemocracy, by Kanishk Tharoor, March 20, 2008.

He says: “We cannot solve the challenges of our time unless we solve them together” … and: “if we simply retreat from problem, we will never be able to come together” … and: “bigoted policies still have lingering effect on many black families” … and: “lack for opportunity for black men contributed to the erosion of families” … and: “that legacy of defeat was passed on to future generations” … and: “for many, memories of humiliation & doubt & fear have never gone away” … and: “anger keeps us from facing our own complicity in our condition” … and: “similar anger exists within segments of the white comunity” … etc. etc.

Barack Obama’s speech on race this Tuesday is already being hailed in quarters of American public opinion as one of the finest pieces of oratory in the country’s history. The embattled Democratic presidential candidate turned the pitfall of his relationship with the volatile Jeremiah Wright into a transcendent meditation on the role of race in American society and politics. Few politicians of his stature and exposure have ever dared venture into these dusty corridors of the country’s identity. And few will ever be capable of both the eloquence and the probing seriousness that Obama mustered in speaking the previously unspoken …

Listen this 37.39 minutes speach on this page of OpenDemocracy.

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