Thursday, 28 July 2016

Barack Obama at the 2016 Democratic National Convention

I watched the speech that President Barack Obama gave yesterday at the Democratic National Convention. Once again, it was a speech I was happy with but I was also pleased to see a return of the President Obama we knew and loved in 2008 and 2012 - with his no-nonsense yet unifying speeches filled with hope rather than fear.

Obama was wise to remind his audiences of the achievements he and his administration have made since taking office, such as the pursuit of greater environmental protection, marriage equality and dealing with Iran's nuclear program via the use of diplomacy. These are promises he made back in 2008 and, in one way or another he has delivered; Hillary Clinton is expected to carry on with Obama's legacy and the case is being made that if Americans are happy with such progress, they should vote for her. Like Bill Clinton in his speech, Obama was sure to note Hillary's achievements, such as the healthcare program she helped bring about for children.

His speech was a stark contrast to that made by the Republican nominee, whose speech was designed to instill fear. Obama's focus on what all Americans have in common with each other and the rest of world was a welcome change from all the hatred that's constantly in the media. Yes, people might be of different ethnicities, sexualities and religions but at the end of the day they're all still Americans and all still people;

And finally, I thought it was absolutely wonderful when Obama tied together the important of supporting downballot races in with Bernie Sanders. A brief mention of the persistence of Sanders' supporters along with telling the crowd to "feel the Bern" was an excellent way of strengthening party unity. A Hillary Clinton presidency will be trapped if she is left with a Republican-controlled House and Senate; as President Obama himself said, "Don't boo, vote."

The transcript of his speech can be found on the Los Angeles Times.

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