Obama: African-American museum helps tell fuller story of America

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Barack Obama, History, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2016-09-24 23:17Z by Steven

Obama: African-American museum helps tell fuller story of America

Cable News Network (CNN)
2016-09-24

Eugene Scott, Politics Reporter

Suzanne Malveaux, National correspondent

Kevin Bohn, Supervising Producer

Washington (CNN) President Barack Obama said Saturday that the new Smithsonian museum devoted to African-American history elevates the often-overlooked impact of black Americans and will help others better understand the breadth of the American story.

“This national museum helps to tell a richer and fuller story of who we are,” Obama, the first African-American president, said at the National Museum of African-American History and Culture.

“By knowing this other story we better understand ourselves and each other. It binds us together. It reaffirms that all of us are America, that African-American history is not somehow separate from our larger American story,” he added. “It is central to the American story.”

Saturday’s opening ceremony for the museum also was attended by civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis, former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton and Chief Justice John Roberts. Thousands are expected to have descended on the National Mall this weekend to celebrate the museum’s opening…

Read the entire article here.

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Emotional Obama Tearfully Thanks Trump for Granting Him Citizenship

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Videos on 2016-09-18 22:06Z by Steven

Emotional Obama Tearfully Thanks Trump for Granting Him Citizenship

Borowitz Report
The New Yorker
2016-09-16

Andy Borowitz

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Calling this “the greatest day of my life,” a visibly moved Barack Obama held a news conference on Friday to thank Donald Trump for granting him U.S. citizenship.

“The issue of whether or not I was a U.S. citizen has been a dark cloud over my existence for as long as I can remember,” a tearful Obama told the press corps. “Only one man had the courage, wisdom, and doggedness to make that cloud go away: Donald J. Trump.”…

Read the entire article (with tongue-in-cheek) here.

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Unwinding a Lie: Donald Trump and ‘Birtherism’

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2016-09-16 18:50Z by Steven

Unwinding a Lie: Donald Trump and ‘Birtherism’

The New York Times
2016-09-16

Michael Barbaro

It was not true in 2011, when Donald J. Trump mischievously began to question President Obama’s birthplace aloud in television interviews. “I’m starting to think that he was not born here,” he said at the time.

It was not true in 2012, when he took to Twitter to declare that “an ‘extremely credible source’” had called his office to inform him that Mr. Obama’s birth certificate was “a fraud.”

It was not true in 2014, when Mr. Trump invited hackers to “please hack Obama’s college records (destroyed?) and check ‘place of birth.’”

It was never true, any of it. Mr. Obama’s citizenship was never in question. No credible evidence ever suggested otherwise.

Yet it took Mr. Trump five years of dodging, winking and joking to surrender, finally on Friday, to reality after a remarkable campaign of relentless deception that tried to undermine the legitimacy of the nation’s first black president…

Read the entire article here.

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Trump Drops False ‘Birther’ Theory, but Floats a New One: Clinton Started It

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2016-09-16 18:43Z by Steven

Trump Drops False ‘Birther’ Theory, but Floats a New One: Clinton Started It

The New York Times
2016-09-16

Maggie Haberman

Alan Rapperport

Donald J. Trump publicly retreated from his “birther” campaign on Friday, tersely acknowledging that President Obama was born in the United States and saying that he wanted to move on from the conspiracy theory that he has been clinging to for years.

Mr. Trump made no apology for and took no questions about what had amounted to a five-year-long smear of the nation’s first black president. Instead, he claimed, falsely, that questions about Mr. Obama’s citizenship were initially stirred by the Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, in her unsuccessful primary contest with Mr. Obama in 2008.

Still, Mr. Trump’s brief remarks, tacked onto the end of a campaign appearance with military veterans at his new hotel in downtown Washington, amounted to a sharp reversal from a position he has publicly maintained, over howls of outrage from all but the far-right extreme of the political spectrum, since 2011.

“President Barack Obama was born in the United States, period,” Mr. Trump said. “Now, we all want to get back to making America strong and great again.”

Mr. Trump’s refusal to disavow the birther issue helped drive his standing among black voters to historically low levels, with some public opinion polls showing him supported by zero percent of African-Americans…

…Mr. Trump made no apology for and took no questions about what had amounted to a five-year-long smear of the nation’s first black president. Instead, he claimed, falsely, that questions about Mr. Obama’s citizenship were initially stirred by the Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, in her unsuccessful primary contest with Mr. Obama in 2008…

Read the entire article here.

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Toronto Film Review: ‘Barry’

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Biography, Book/Video Reviews, Media Archive, United States on 2016-09-11 19:40Z by Steven

Toronto Film Review: ‘Barry’

Variety
2016-09-10

Owen Gleiberman, Chief Film Critic


Devon Terrell in Barry. Courtesy of TIFF

Set in 1981, a canny and absorbing drama paints a highly convincing portrait of Barack Obama when he was a 20-year-old college student in New York, still piecing together who he was.

In the movie world, there is often a fine line between coincidence and karma. It’s not really all that hard to fathom how two filmmakers, within a year of each other, could each come up with the notion of making a kind of snapshot biopic about the young Barack Obama. Yet the fact that both movies are emerging near the tail-end of the Obama presidency is surely no accident. The time has come to take stock, and Obama, at the twilight of his leadership, with eight years of policy and scrutiny, controversy and (yes) celebrity behind him, is ripe for the kind of mythological intimacy that the movies, perhaps uniquely, can provide.

Southside With You,” the Sundance hit that was released into theaters just two weeks ago, is a deft and observant talkathon that turns Barack and Michelle Obama’s first date into a touching political spin on “Before Sunrise.” The Barack of that movie, which is set on a single day in 1989, is still finding his way, but he’s already a precocious young version of the Obama we know: impeccable and confident, a fusion of insight and arrogance and clarity and empathy, speaking in those rolling information-age cadences.

The Barack Obama we meet in “Barry,” on the other hand (a movie set eight years earlier), is a very different sort of cat, a young man you feel you scarcely know at all, because he doesn’t totally know himself — which turns out to be the theme of the movie. As played by the canny Australian actor Devon Terrell, he’s not even Barack yet, he’s just Barry, rolling with the punches, a slightly gawky handsome angular dude with a fringe of Afro and a way of falling into pensive trances when he’s chain-smoking. Terrell nails the clipped vibe of awareness, and a youthful version of the stare, to an uncanny degree. His Barry is reasonably self-possessed, with a lot of ideas, but he doesn’t have a clue as to how they fit together. He’s not the talkative lawyer-professor we’re used to. He’s tentative, his brashness weighed down by hidden doubts…

Read the entire review here.

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The Trouble with Post-Blackness

Posted in Anthologies, Barack Obama, Books, Media Archive, Philosophy, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2016-08-25 21:25Z by Steven

The Trouble with Post-Blackness

Columbia University Press
February 2015
288 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9780231169356
Hardcover ISBN: 9780231169349
E-book ISBN: 9780231538503

Edited by:

Houston A. Baker, Distinguished University Professor
Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee

K. Merinda Simmons, Associate Professor of Religious Studies
University of Alabama

An America in which the color of one’s skin no longer matters would be unprecedented. With the election of President Barack Obama in 2008, that future suddenly seemed possible. Obama’s rise reflects a nation of fluid populations and fortunes, a society in which a biracial individual could be embraced as a leader by all. Yet complicating this vision are shifting demographics, rapid redefinitions of race, and the instant invention of brands, trends, and identities that determine how we think about ourselves and the place of others.

This collection of original essays confronts the premise, advanced by black intellectuals, that the Obama administration marked the start of a “post-racial” era in the United States. While the “transcendent” and post-racial black elite declare victory over America’s longstanding codes of racial exclusion and racist violence, their evidence relies largely on their own salaries and celebrity. These essays strike at the certainty of those who insist life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are now independent of skin color and race in America. They argue, signify, and testify that “post-blackness” is a problematic mythology masquerading as fact—a dangerous new “race science” motivated by black transcendentalist individualism. Through rigorous analysis, these essays expose the idea of a post-racial nation as a pleasurable entitlement for a black elite, enabling them to reject the ethics and urgency of improving the well-being of the black majority.

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction: The Dubious Stage of Post-Blackness—Performing Otherness, Conserving Dominance, by K. Merinda Simmons
  • 1. What Was Is: The Time and Space of Entanglement Erased by Post-Blackness, by Margo Natalie Crawford
  • 2. Black Literary Writers and Post-Blackness, by Stephanie Li
  • 3. African Diasporic Blackness Out of Line: Trouble for “Post-Black” African Americanism, by Greg Thomas
  • 4. Fear of a Performative Planet: Troubling the Concept of “Post-Blackness”, by Rone Shavers
  • 5. E-Raced: #Touré, Twitter, and Trayvon, by Riché Richardson
  • 6. Post-Blackness and All of the Black Americas, by Heather D. Russell
  • 7. Embodying Africa: Roots-Seekers and the Politics of Blackness, by Bayo Holsey
  • 8. “The world is a ghetto”: Post-Racial America(s) and the Apocalypse, by Patrice Rankine
  • 9. The Long Road Home, by Erin Aubry Kaplan
  • 10. Half as Good, by John L. Jackson Jr.
  • 11. “Whither Now and Why”: Content Mastery and Pedagogy—a Critique and a Challenge, by Dana A. Williams
  • 12. Fallacies of the Post-Race Presidency, by Ishmael Reed
  • 13. Thirteen Ways of Looking at Post-Blackness (after Wallace Stevens), by Emily Raboteau
  • Conclusion: Why the Lega Mask Has Many Mouths and Multiple Eyes, by Houston A. Baker Jr.
  • List of Contributors
  • Index
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JUSTIN WEBB: The tragic irony is, that under Barack Obama’s policy of not being black, America has become MORE divided by race

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2016-08-16 00:45Z by Steven

JUSTIN WEBB: The tragic irony is, that under Barack Obama’s policy of not being black, America has become MORE divided by race

The Daily Mail
2016-07-19

Justin Webb

Like many of the most persuasive public speakers, Barack Obama has always had a neat line in self-deprecation.

Shortly before being elected President in 2008 he told an audience: ‘Contrary to the rumours you have heard, I was not born in a manger. I was actually born on Krypton and sent here by my father, Jor-el, to save the planet Earth.’

In other words, he was saying, he was Superman, not Jesus.

Sometimes I used to wonder if he was completely joking. Be in no doubt that this man, when he arrived on political Earth, was not coming among us to make up the numbers.

He was on a mission — a mission to bring change…

Read the entire article here.

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Barack Obama and Immigrant Blackness: A Catalyst for Structural Change

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Communications/Media Studies, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, United States on 2016-08-15 20:18Z by Steven

Barack Obama and Immigrant Blackness: A Catalyst for Structural Change

The International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations: Annual Review
Volume 12 (2012)
pages 33-42

Kirin Wachter-Grene, Acting Instructor of Literature
New York University

This essay builds upon an argument I make in my article “Beyond the Binary: Obama’s Hybridity and Post-Racialization” to read Barack Obama through post-colonial scholar Homi Bhabha’s theory of “hybridity” to advance “post-bichromatic racialization.” Obama’s cultural identity is more complex than the limited bichromatic (black/white) ways—such as “multiracial” or “African American”—it is imagined to be. He can be read as a hybrid individual, understood in a multiplicity of ways including as non-bichromaticly multiracial in which his blackness is derivative of African, not African-American heritage, and as a second-generation immigrant. Hybridity values difference without trying to systematize it into hierarchical classifications, thus it suggests potential for structural change to the concept of black racialization. Some may regard the complexity of Obama’s cultural identity to be a moot point due to a consideration that in 2013 his public persona is no longer capable of being discursively manipulated regarding race. However it is crucial to remember that cultural understandings of powerful public figures are never static concepts. All subjects remain full of discursively transformative possibilities. This article therefore seeks to advance a discourse that may eventually complicate the predominant manner in which subjects are categorized as black in the United States.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Othering Obama: Racial Attitudes and Dubious Beliefs about the Nation’s First Black President

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2016-08-07 23:29Z by Steven

Othering Obama: Racial Attitudes and Dubious Beliefs about the Nation’s First Black President

Sociological Perspectives
Volume 57, Number 4 (December 2014)
pages 450-469
DOI: 10.1177/0731121414536140

Daniel Tope, Associate Professor of Sociology
Florida State University

Justin T. Pickett, Assistant Professor
School of Criminal Justice
State University of New York, Albany

Ryon J. Cobb, National Institute on Aging Postdoctoral Fellow
Davis School of Gerontology
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California

Jonathan Dirlam
Department of Sociology
Ohio State University

The literature on descriptive representation indicates that the election of black political leaders may prompt white enmity. We assess this claim by examining the relationship between whites’ racial attitudes and their likelihood of othering Barack Obama by labeling him as a Muslim and/or a noncitizen interloper. The findings reveal that both symbolic racial resentment and traditional racial attitudes are associated with othering Obama. In addition, the results reveal that the relationship between racial resentment and othering is substantially mediated by the use of seemingly nonracist frames based on emotional reactions and negative expectations about an Obama presidency. Conversely, much of the effect of belief in traditional antiblack stereotypes was transmitted directly to othering Obama without the use of justificatory frames. Despite claims of racial progress, our findings suggest that racial sentiments—both overt and symbolic—continue to play a major role in politics.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Glamour Exclusive: President Barack Obama Says, “This Is What a Feminist Looks Like”

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Women on 2016-08-04 17:40Z by Steven

Glamour Exclusive: President Barack Obama Says, “This Is What a Feminist Looks Like”

Glamour
2016-08-04

Barack Obama, President of the United States
Washington, D.C.


The Perk of a “45-Second Commute” The President has spent “a lot more time” watching Sasha and Malia (here, meeting Mac the Turkey in 2014) grow into women.
Official White House Photos by Pete Souza

There are a lot of tough aspects to being President. But there are some perks too. Meeting extraordinary people across the country. Holding an office where you get to make a difference in the life of our nation. Air Force One.

But perhaps the greatest unexpected gift of this job has been living above the store. For many years my life was consumed by long commutes­—from my home in Chicago to Springfield, Illinois, as a state senator, and then to Washington, D.C., as a United States senator. It’s often meant I had to work even harder to be the kind of husband and father I want to be.

But for the past seven and a half years, that commute has been reduced to 45 seconds—the time it takes to walk from my living room to the Oval Office. As a result, I’ve been able to spend a lot more time watching my daughters grow up into smart, funny, kind, wonderful young women. That isn’t always easy, either—watching them prepare to leave the nest. But one thing that makes me optimistic for them is that this is an extraordinary time to be a woman. The progress we’ve made in the past 100 years, 50 years, and, yes, even the past eight years has made life significantly better for my daughters than it was for my grandmothers. And I say that not just as President but also as a feminist…

Read the entire article here.

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