“We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers,” said Obama, halfway through his speech. “We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth. And because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself.”
I have heard or read this sentiment in countless speeches, but when I heard it said by Obama, who has come to embody diversity rather than blackness, it felt like a promise and a benediction. It must have been for this, this talent for making the worn piety sound true, this knack of restoring to good intentions their original force and urgency, that millions upon millions of Americans gave him their money and their votes, even the plutocrats, in fact, especially the plutocrats, who Obama had promised to tax. And he ends with:...Substitute partition for segregation and these words could have been written for India, only I can’t see the man that Mittal, Ambani and their fellow billionaires want for our next prime minister, saying them. If these hatreds were to pass, who would elect him?
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