So Obama is about to become the new President of the USA. I know it’s old news now, but I was just watching last Friday’s ABC World News webcast and they had the ‘exclusive premiere’ of the music video from Young Jeezy called ‘My President is Black.’
Obama and my generation
January 18, 2009 by Marianne
Despite what you might think of the song and this rapper’s eloquence, when’s the last time you heard a popular song about how great the president is? I’m sure more than one rap/pop song feature digs on how much Bush let everyone down, but it’s been a long time since the US ever had a president that was ‘cool’ to the young generation; one that has created anything but indifference.
The video is here if you want to have a look.
Apart from the fact that I think it’s pretty amazing how much people my age are talking about politics, it got me thinking about the fact that this kind of thing could only happen with a political system like the one in the US.
For a few years now everyone’s been complaining non-stop about George Bush and Tony Blair, and yes they’re both (almost) out of the picture, but what did Blair get replaced with? Certainly not Britain’s version of Obama. I know I’m part of the young generation, so I have a bias here.
If you look at the voting records from last November in the US, the amount of young people that came out to vote is astonishing. This election year gave me a new found respect for the way the US government works. That is to say, no matter who is in the government – the members of the House and Senate, the American people still get to dictate (more or less…let’s not bring up Gore’s election here) who’s going to be the number one in charge. The system’s not perfect (again…Mr. Gore…) but no system ever is. I suppose my point is that even if the young generation in the UK did start to rise up and call for change, who can we follow? No matter what, we still have to hope and pray that the party members pick the right leader. Sure you can say that they’re the ones who know what’s going on and understand what’s needed, but sometimes what’s needed is someone to inspire change, not someone who has been intrenched in old politics for years and was probably part of the problem in the first place.
We’re in an economic downturn right now (in case you’ve been living in a cave for the past few months…just look at any news source – it’s story number two after Gaza/Israel these days) and aside from some miracle plan to switch it into an upturn, what we really need is someone to provide some optimism and inspiration to get us off our lazy arses and doing something about it instead of sitting at home panicking.
Throwing stupid amounts of money at the problem doesn’t seem to have gotten anyone anywhere yet and at the end of the day everyone’s going to have to tighten their belts and re-prioritize what’s important in life, even if that means taking jobs you never thought you’d have – like all these new jobs Obama plans to create that certainly won’t have fancy executive titles and cushy offices. Whether or not Obama turns out to be our man stateside, at the very least he’s created an amazing amount of drive in a generation that previously wouldn’t have dreamed of going to the polls in such numbers.
I just hope that my US peers stay motivated to work through these inconvenient times, I hope Obama does turn out to be our man, and I hope that the government in the UK can find their own way to get the people moving.