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Obama on race

I just watched Obama’s speech on race. Before the commentariat bashes the speech into a shape they can sell for the next few cycles (Wolf Blitzer: “It was a preemptive strike” – feh!), I want to say that I thought this was a fearless speech that shows the way forward on the issue we Americans fear more than death, taxes, and terrorism.

I listened thinking about what Obama chose not to say. He could have condemned racism and tried to put the whole race issue behind him, as Mitt tried to remove religion as an issue. Instead he seized the moment and put a push-pin into the timeline: Here’s where we started to confront in public the racial divides the majority culture has refused to acknowledge.

He could have given simple platitudes. Instead he trusted us with the complex truth. Think how any other major politician would have handled this.

And we saw a bit of how the audacity of hope can not only move us, but move us forward. [Tags: ]

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