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Obama's blackness raised the stakes of his success, exposed the constraints of his office, and made the whiteness at the center of American politics permanently visible. Includes links to related podcasts.
Demby, Gene. “Obama's Racial Legacy: Some Last Words On The First Black President.” NPR, NPR, 20 Jan. 2017, www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2017/01/20/510676874/obamas-racial-legacy-some-last-words-on-the-first-black-president.
Kaleem, Jaweed, et al. “America Just Spent 8 Years with a Black President. For Many African Americans, It Meant One Big Thing: Freedom to 'Dream'.” Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times, 16 Jan. 2017, www.latimes.com/projects/la-na-obama-african-americans/.
The first African American to win the presidency, he made history with his resounding victory over Republican John McCain in the election of 2008. His eloquent message of hope and change attracted voters across the country, even in states that had gone decades without supporting a Democratic presidential candidate.
As a candidate, Barack Obama said we needed to reckon with race and with America’s original sin, slavery. But as our first black president, he has avoided mention of race almost entirely. In having to be “twice as good” and “half as black,” Obama reveals the false promise and double standard of integration.