Last night, President Obama delivered his final speech as president of the United States (cries). For my sixth grade social studies class, I had to research the differences between him and John McCain and choose who I would vote for president. Although 11 year old me chose McCain (why), I’m truly grateful that I was wrong and have grown up with the Obamas as my first family. Because I was too young to remember anything about George Bush other than the effects of his presidency, President Obama has been my leader. I used to question why he was unable to enact the change he campaigned upon, but I recently understood after political research and the actions of his Republican congress. President Obama has made mistakes (far less than any other president in my opinion), but he and his family represent the true American dream.
As the first African-American president from Hawaiʻi, President Obama (I fondly refer to him as uncle Barry) has made history. His intelligence, poise and charisma are unlike that of any previous presidents. I’m thankful for his inclusion to all people no matter their race, gender, documentation, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or religion. America must be a country for all people without a checklist and President Obama has made sure of that. But he’s not the only Obama who has touched the lives of millions of people. First Lady Michelle Obama is one of my own personal heroes who has inspired me through her grace, savvy and compassion. She is one of the smartest women in the spotlight with not only a bachelors from Princeton but also a law degree from Harvard. She has proven that with hard work, women are capable of anything. I’m proud to call her my First Lady.
The Obama family has made many sacrifices and suffered countless amounts of racism and hatred while in the White House, and I’m thankful to have grown up with such a beautiful and inspiring family leading the nation. They will be deeply missed (please don’t leave us!).