Obama was destined to become our President. But it took an email from my father to convince me.
November 5, 2008
Well, it happened. An old, white man lost to a young, black man. Many people, especially those of a certain age, those who remember Jim Crow, would have never thought to see this day. Frankly, I never thought I’d see this day. Well, it happened.
Maybe the various fictional black presidents on TV were not so ahead of their time. The truth caught up with fiction. There are myriad reasons why. Probably one of the biggest was just how bad the previous regime had fared. The Republicans are undoubtedly paying for the many sins of George Bush. And rightly so. “W” was and is an out and out disaster. Even if McCain were nothing like the President, he was more so than Obama.
While Obama was roundly (and somewhat rightfully) criticized as being untested and inexperienced, the tested and experienced had, arguably, stunk up the White House worse than any governing body in US history. Bush likes to say history will judge him kindly. Nixon said the same thing. Didn’t happen.
Our economy has nosedived, with no recovery in sight. Our deficit is at an all-time high, worsening by the day. The war in Iraq is Viet Nam II. And so on. Couple these “facts” with Obama’s staggering campaign budget and you get a landslide. An unstoppable force for change.
Undecided less than a month ago, the above events are not what turned me to Obama. Rather the change took place in one morning, upon the receipt of an email from my father. He had just returned from a long and lovely vacation to Europe. He’d stayed at the best hotels, ate the finest foods and, in short, enjoyed the sort of high-end vacation a man of his means is entitled to. But it was not any of this that he spoke of in his email. Instead he wrote, “personal reservations aside, if we don’t elect Barack Obama as President ‘brand USA’ is in deep, deep trouble. We will be lost to the world.”
“We will be lost to the world.”
My father is roughly John McCain’s age. He makes serious money –well above the 250k that will most definitely be taxed higher under Obama. Equally important, my father made all of his money the old-fashioned way: he earned it. That he was so forthright in his advocacy of Obama was not to be taken lightly.
And I didn’t. The USA has always been a light in the world. And it was in danger of going out. Without even baring witness to the debates, the SNL caricatures, any of the campaigns in America, my father saw and heard all he needed to… in another country. And it was enough.
Given this is an advertising blog, I’ll end on an advertising note. The existing long-running campaign for America had failed. It needed to be scrapped. If Obama is all hope and charisma, so be it. We need both.