Being the President of the most powerful Country is not an easy job, most people would agree. It is even more so when from the very first day, powerful opposition lined up against you and vowed that their major task was to make sure you fail. Not only did they say it, they even went as far as going against their own ideas when adapted for the sake of compromise for bipartisan agreement. Against all odds, “Yes We Can” still turned to “Yes We Did”.
In many countries, woken up from slumber and complacency, spontaneous demonstrations sprung up among women with little planning. There is this innate feeling among the only being God gave the power of creation when human survival is at risk. There is a nature of man to take hard work of others for granted. Just like the fruit of our labor, the germ we appreciate is the one worked hard for. Since we do not have Obama to kick around anymore, Obamacare is hot!
You see, whatever progress we make in life must not be taken for granted. Our grandfathers and mothers die for our civil liberties, economic survival and progressive accomplishment but we sometimes think WE do not have to fight as hard to keep them. This is true not only in the western or Eastern world but also in Africa. We think that after Independence, we are all set and done. Economic freedom will fall into our laps. Not so Buraimo!
Look at America, the progress Obama made in eight years can be wiped away unless the rise of women by that rally is translated into substance in the form of action from the grassroots to the peak of power. Africans have produced many Obama that have never seen the light of the day, have been suffocated within the thorns of flowers that glitters; and where they have succeeded like Nkrumah, Lumumba, Nyerere, Awo, Biko etc. have never been sustained or encouraged.
In African local language, whoever that Babalawo was that washed the head of Obama’s father before leaving Africa, we need more of them. We have our honest man or woman in every village. Most black managers in America would not be surprised at the almost insurmountable oppositions Obama faced. It was beyond that of an opposition party or adversary relationship in a democracy. Black managers are doubted and worked against hoping they fail.
The same people and financial companies that brought United States on its knees that people were asking for their heads, are back. This time not as campaign donors but in charge of Govt.! Since Obama succeeded, every Jack or Harry thinks if a black man could do it, so could he. But for Obama, United States could have slipped into a depression and could have taken the rest of the world with it. It is no more a discussion topic since Obama succeeded where others failed.
The people that benefited most from Affordable Care Act known as Obamacare, voted against their self-interest because some do not want “government in their Medicare”. Even when they know Medicare is Government, they voted for the Party that will privatize healthcare as long as they were told it is going to be “cheaper, better and accessible” to all. Well, just like lottery and billion dollars are accessible to everyone but only a few got it!
The naked truth about healthcare in United States is that more money is spent than any other country but life expectancy is lower than some developing countries. The whole truth is that the rich and upper middleclass have life expectancy like the rest of the western world while the poor are worse off than the poor African or Asian countries: dragging down the average life expectancy of United States. In short, the anger is about the rich paying for Obamacare (ACA).
The amount of brothers locked up for drugs, equally abused by whites and blacks, cannot be restored while private sector made money off private jails. Even after Obama pardoned more of them than any President in history. They lost the most productive times of their lives behind bars. Politicians claimed they were being tough on crime. Whenever minorities are involved, the only solution is more police, more jails, tougher sentences and throwing away the keys.
A little experiment if performed in high school or college could have demonstrated the lives of two or four mice in a pen compared to the consequences of throwing too many in the same pen with limited space, food and water. When we are talking about human, children born by women that found themselves condemned into ghetto, underfunded schools and recreation, in dilapidated lead poisoned invested homes and water; we must all share the blame with victims.
Just like healthcare, American schools are flushed with money but not equally distributed. The best healthcare and schools are not for minorities in the cities. The police are asked to do the impossible job of repression in depressed areas of the cities while others in the same country enjoying a nourished environment get treatment in rehabilitation hospitals not jails. Obama did not create unjust communities. He, like any other black man had been stereotypically accosted.
Where Obama met the Country and where he left off will be a tough act for any President to follow. His accomplishments have been distorted and repainted even when America leads economic recovery, better than any other country. Obama may have lost the public relations game when in power, they have inadvertently sent themselves up for failure by comparing what they would accomplish to his record. Facts are stubborn; there are no alternative facts.
Though unemployment among African American has been cut in half, it remained the highest of any social-economic group. They should be angry. But the promise is to solve “carnage” among African Americans in the cities with more force, law and order; while the rural areas have been promised jobs they know have been taken over by automation, skills and maximum profits. It is maximum profit that looks for cheap labor all over the world, not Obama and not Unions.
Indeed, United States gains more jobs from selling talents, products, machineries, or weapons abroad than any country in the world. If every country decides on its own community for jobs, workers and materials first; African countries will be the richest. African consumers of all goods, even food and producers of little; provide more foreign jobs for exporters than for themselves.
If Africans want their own Obama to do what he has done for America in Africa, that man in every village must be respected for his honesty, skills and selflessness in leadership positions. Africa needs to replace ethnic war with free trade. It replaced war in Europe, Asia and America.
Written by Farouk Martins Aresa