President Obama’s Remarks at the National Action Network

REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT

AT THE NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK ANNUAL GALA

Sheraton New York Hotel

New York, New York

6:01 P.M. EDT

     THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  Good to be in New York City.  Let me begin by acknowledging some very, very special guests.  Dr. Richardson, thank you.  Charlie Rangel, for your outstanding work on behalf of your constituents.  Mayor David Dinkins.  (Applause.)  Governor David Paterson is here.  (Applause.)  State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.  DiNapoli, excuse me.  This is another one that’s hard to pronounce:  Stevie Wonder.  (Laughter.)  Martin Luther King III.  (Applause.)  All the Keepers of the Dream honorees with us tonight, and the National Action Network.

It is wonderful to be here as you celebrate your 20th anniversary.  Some things have changed a lot since 1991.  I told Reverend Al backstage he’s getting skinnier than me.  (Laughter.)  He’s getting skinnier than Spike.  (Laughter.)  But he hasn’t lost his sense of style.  The other thing that hasn’t changed is the National Action Network’s commitment to fight injustice and inequality here in New York City and across America.  And that’s not only a testament to Reverend Sharpton.  It’s a testament to all of you who are here tonight.  I want to commend you for the work that you’ve done over the last two decades to lift up not only the African American community but the broader American family.  That’s what you’re about.  (Applause.)

The last time I came was in April of 2007, four months ago — four years ago this month.  Back then I had fewer supporters.  Most of you couldn’t pronounce my name, so Tom, don’t feel bad.  (Laughter.)  I had a lot fewer gray hairs.  I was looking at some pictures — I looked really young back then.  (Laughter.)  I said that we were facing extraordinary challenges in this country, but that what was stopping us from solving them wasn’t a lack of policies; it wasn’t a lack of plans.  What was stopping us was a broken politics.  A broken politics in Washington — a politics that was all about the next election instead of the next generation; that was all about what we disagreed about instead of what we had in common; a politics that made us cynical about our ability to change this country.

And I said that if you stand with me and believe in what we can do together, if you do what civil rights groups like the National Action Network have always done, if you put your shoulder to the wheel of history, then we can move this country toward the promise of a better day.  I told you at the time I wasn’t a perfect person, I wouldn’t be a perfect President, but what I could commit to was always telling you the truth even when it was hard, and I would spend each and every day thinking about you.

And because you made our campaign your own, because you believed in our ability to shape our own destiny, we won that chance to bring about real change.  And I said on inauguration night in Chicago that that was simply the end of the beginning, and that now the real business started.

Because I didn’t run and so many of you didn’t support me just to win an election.  We won the election so that we could then actually get moving on all the work that had been left undone.  Even though we understood, of course, the magnitudes of the challenges we faced, we didn’t fully realize until late in the game, probably the last month of the campaign, that we would be facing the worst recession in generations — a recession that was leaving millions of Americans without a home, without a job, without hope for the future.

And as Reverend Al said, some folks have amnesia about this.  Where are we two years later?  Our economy has started to grow again.  The recovery is gaining momentum.  People are finally starting to get hired back.  We had to make some tough choices in between.  You remember when we decided we had to move to save the American auto industry and everybody said, that can’t happen.  And then two weeks ago, GM just announced that it’s going to hire back every single worker that has been laid off and every U.S. automaker is making a profit.  (Applause.)  But that wasn’t popular.  That wasn’t popular.

A while back, I visited a small trucking business, and its owner Stephen Neal is one of our country’s African American business leaders.  And he told me that because of the uptick in our economy, he was buying new equipment and adding more workers.  And that’s what’s happening all across America.  In the first three months of this year, we’ve added nearly half a million private sector jobs — nearly 2 million jobs in the last 13 months.

So we’re making progress, but we’re not there yet.  And I want you to know that so long as there are Americans who cannot find work I will be fighting for jobs, and so long as the gap between the wealthiest few and everybody else keeps on growing I will be fighting for opportunity.  And I know you’ll be right there alongside with me.  (Applause.)

We are going to keep fighting until every family gets a shot at the American Dream.  That’s our North Star.  That’s the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning.  That’s the last thing I think about when I go to bed at night — the hopes and dreams of people who work hard every single day, look after their families, take care of their responsibilities, and just need a little bit of help to make it.

Now, there are Americans of all colors and creeds who are struggling to live out those dreams today.  That’s part of what our campaign was about, was reminding ourselves that everybody is in this together.  Now, what’s also true, though, is the unemployment rate for African Americans is almost double what it is for other groups.  It’s also true that those with the least have been sacrificing the most during this recession.  What’s also true is that even before the recession hit, too many communities were marked by structural inequalities in health and education and employment that made it profoundly difficult for too many people to get ahead.

     You understood that.  I understood that.  That’s part of the reason I ran for President, because I’ve seen the frustration and the wounded pride in the eyes of folks who’ve lost their jobs or a father who has to go home and tell his kids that we might not have enough this month, might be losing our apartment this month.  I’ve heard the stories of struggling families who are doing everything right and still at the end of the month don’t quite have enough to pay the bills.  I did not start hearing those stories when I became President.  Those are stories that led me to run for President in the first place.  (Applause.)

     As Reverend mentioned, I got my start tackling the problems of joblessness and hopelessness that afflict so many of our cities and rural communities.  I got my start working to bring opportunity to neighborhoods that were full of boarded-up houses and shuttered stores, fighting to keep kids off the street, fighting to get them into school, fighting to make sure that they went on to college, fighting to make real the promise of justice in our judicial system.

And these causes of justice and equality and opportunity, they aren’t just what led me into politics, they’re what led ordinary people to sit down at the front of the bus, to cross that bridge in Selma, to heed a King’s call to perfect our union.  They’re the heart of what makes us Americans.  That’s who we are.  And because of your support, they’re the causes that I’ve been carrying since I’ve been in the Oval Office.

With the help of folks at the grassroots, we passed historic health insurance reform that will not only extend coverage to 30 million more Americans and give Americans more affordable choices, but will narrow the cruel health disparities between African Americans of different backgrounds.  That was because of your work.  (Applause.)

We passed Wall Street reform that will protect consumers from the kind of predatory lending practices that helped cause this recession.  We’re rewarding work with an expanded Earned Income Tax Credit.  We’re tackling poverty with Promise Neighborhoods that build on the great work of Geoffrey Canada up in Harlem.  We’re making sure our civil rights and anti-discrimination laws are enforced.  And if you’re interested in learning more, if you want to spread the word about what we’re doing not just in the African American community but all across the country, go to our website and it will give you a long list of what we’ve done over the last two years — promises made and promises kept.

That’s what we’ve tried to do over these past couple years — advance the causes that make us who we are.  But we’ve still got more work to do.  If we’re serious about opening up opportunity and making sure America prospers in the 21st century, we’re going to have to up our game as a nation.  I was talking to Magic right before we came out — I was talking about the Bulls, of course.  (Laughter.)  He’s still picking the Lakers, but he made the point, a young man Derek Rose upped his game, worked hard, and is having an MVP season.  Well, we have to do that in classrooms, we have to do that in the workplaces, we’ve got to do that in our communities and our neighborhoods.  (Applause.)  Our fathers got to up their games.

If we want to attract new jobs and new opportunities to our shores, we’ve got to make sure America can out-compete the rest of the world.  That’s what we mean when we say we got to win the future.  It means we got to rebuild our crumbling transportation networks with high-speed rail, upgrade our communications networks with high-speed Internet.  It means we’re investing in cutting-edge research and technology like clean energy — and most of all, making sure we are giving every one of our children the best possible education.  (Applause.)  The best possible education is the single most important factor in determining whether they succeed.  But it’s also what will determine whether we succeed.  It’s the key to opportunity.  It is the civil rights issue of our time.

I know education is important to everybody here, especially Reverend Al.  In fact, a while back, he stopped by the White House to talk about education.  He was joined by the great mayor of this city, Mike Bloomberg.  He was also joined by Newt Gingrich.  Newt — hmm.  (Laughter.)  Newt said he and Reverend Sharpton were “the original odd couple.”  That’s an understatement.  (Laughter.)

But I welcomed them to the White House because I don’t think there’s anything odd about the two of them coming together around the importance of education.  When there is an achievement gap between students of different races and backgrounds, that’s not a Democratic problem, that’s not a Republican problem — that is an American problem that we have to address.  (Applause.)  When too many of our schools are failing our children, too many of our kids are dropping out of school, that’s not a black or white or brown problem — that is an American problem.  We’re going to have to solve that problem.  We are all responsible for the education of all of our children.

That starts with parents making sure that we’re doing right at home, staying engaged in our child’s education, setting high expectation.  Without parental responsibility, nothing else we do will matter.  But we also know that each of us has a responsibility not just as parents, but as civic leaders, as Americans, to do a better job of educating our children.

And that’s why, two years ago, we started something called Race for the Top.  We’re saying to states, prove you are serious about improving education not just for some kids, but for all kids.  And if you do, we will show you the money.  And for less than 1 percent of what our country as a whole spends on education each year, Race to the Top has led 40 states to raise their standards for teaching and learning and student achievement, and developed plans for some of the schools that are underperforming the worst.  And all this was done not in Washington.  It was developed by Republican and Democratic governors across the country.

We’re going to have to take same approach when it comes to fixing No Child Left Behind.  Instead of measuring students based on whether they’re above or below some arbitrary test, we need to make sure our students are graduating from high school ready for a career, ready for college.  That’s what we need to do.  (Applause.)  Instead of labeling our schools a failure one day — instead of labeling our schools a failure one day and then throwing up our hands and walking away, we’ve got to refocus on the schools that need help the most.  In the 21st Century, it’s not enough to just leave no child left behind.  We’ve got to help every child get ahead.  (Applause.)  That’s our goal — get every child on a path to academic excellence.

And we need to make sure that that path leads to a college degree.  That’s why we ended a system where we were subsidizing banks in the student loan program.  They were taking billions of dollars out of the student loan program.  We said, why don’t we give that to the students directly?  That would make sense.  (Applause.)  So we made college more affordable for millions of students.  Millions of students across the country are now getting student loans that they weren’t getting before and more loans than they were getting before.  That’s why we’re making it easier to repay student loans so kids don’t graduate, like Michelle and I did, with massive loan payments each month.  It was more than our mortgage for 10 years.  It’s one of the things I try to remember — I try to remind people when they say, well, you’re President now.  You’re out of touch.  I said, listen, it was only a few years ago I was still paying off my student loans.  (Applause.)  And it’s true, I don’t pump gas now, but I remember what it was like pumping gas.  (Laughter.)  I remember.  I remember the end of the month.  (Laughter.)  I remember that.  (Applause.)  

We appreciate all of you buying the book, Michelle and I.  (Laughter.)  That’s the college fund right there.  (Laughter.)  That was not a given.  That’s why we’re reinvesting in Historically Black Colleges and Universities.  (Applause.)  That’s why we are — that’s why we’re upgrading our community colleges that prepare so many working families to succeed in this economy.  And by taking all these steps, I’m confident we are going to meet a goal that I set when I took office that I announced in my first State of the Union:  By the end of this decade, America will once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.  That is something that we can achieve.  That’s something we can achieve.  (Applause.)

That’s how we can out-educate countries around the world.  That’s how we will out-compete.  That’s how we will win the future in the 21st century.

Now, one thing we won’t be able to win is — if some of our people are falling behind, we will not win the future.  The only way for America to prosper is for all Americans to prosper.  We’ve seen that in the census that just came out.  The face of America is changing.  You can’t get away with having a third of our children, half of our children, not doing well.  Not today, not in the 21st century.  All of us — black, white, Latino, Native American, Asian American, men, women, disabled, non-disabled — in America, we rise and fall together.

An America where the American Dream is within reach of everybody, that’s what we’ve been fighting to build over the last two years.  That’s what the National Action Network has been fighting to build over the past two decades.  I know that there are times where the work is frustrating.  I know there are times where it is hard.  There are times when change can seem painfully slow to come by.  There are times when some of you may have said, I don’t know what Obama is doing there.  There are times where you lose hope, times when folks in Washington focus on scoring points instead of solving problems.  And some of you may just put up your hands and say, politics is too tough.

But in those moments when we start asking ourselves if change is possible, you’ve got to remember what we’ve done together over the past few years.  Remember all the children who will graduate from high school ready for college and beyond. Remember all the Americans who will no longer have to worry about going bankrupt because they got sick.  Remember all the families who will no longer be exploited by insurance companies or a credit card company or a mortgage lender.

I’m not asking you to think about what we’ve already done so you can be satisfied with our progress.  I know this isn’t the National Satisfaction Network.  This is the National Action Network.  (Laughter and applause.)  But I am asking you to draw inspiration from the fact that we know change is possible.  I am living testament that change is possible.  (Applause.)  We know we have the ability to put our shoulders to the wheel of history and steer America towards the promise of a better day.  We know that we stand on other shoulders and step by step, inch by inch, we make progress.

That’s what we’ve been doing.  And if you’re as committed as I am to continuing to change this country for the better, if you feel the same determination that I do to tackle the problems that haven’t yet met, if you’re still willing to believe in what we can do together, I am absolutely confident we will do what you’ve been doing for the last 20 years.  We will build an America where the ideals of justice and equality and opportunity are alive and well, and we will reclaim the American Dream in our time.  So thank you.  God bless you.  God bless the United States of America.  Thank you.

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25 Comments

Filed under African Americans

25 responses to “President Obama’s Remarks at the National Action Network

  1. Billy Holloway Sr

    I will donate and support my president

  2. Everyone should be, and I guess need to be reminded that everything coming from Mr. Obama’s mouth is spoken from the mindset of a political campaign that is approaching. Now that he is preparing for 2012 he will pay more lip service to the African-American public. He knows that he’s lost a lot of us because we can see what he and his fellow politicians are really doing. (Serving the Anglo-elite cabal)

    It’s one thing to sweet talk the people, but another thing to be totally silent while our world is spinning out of control and we are the ones (as usual) suffering the most. We are the ones still being shot down in the streets by rogue and very racist cops. We are the ones being stuffed deeply into the prison system in its newly recognize slavery infrastructure. We are the ones who will be denied jobs first. We are the ones who must sit back and watch as our so-called leaders pretend to be the saviors of middle-east and African nations, as they murder and pillage those nations under a ruse which many of us are so confused that we actually believe the abundance of lies we are told.
    We must be thoroughly awash in the ‘Americanized white man’s dream’ to believe in a nation of powerful whites whom every decade continue to tear the world apart.

    You’ve heard it before. We are being played by both sides of the political system and the game they play is similar to good cop bad cop, but both are abusing us in the most harsh, uncouth, and unethical ways to say the least, but at least they aren’t dropping bombs on us…Yet!

  3. EUGENE G. DRAYTON

    TO REV. AL SHARPTON:
    CONGRAULATION ON YOUR 20TH YEARS AT THE NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK IN THE STRUGGLE. I MET TO AT SPIKE LEE’S HOUSE WHEN YOU RAN FOR PRESIDENT OF THESE UNITED STATES IN 2004 . I WAS THE DEPUTY MAYOR OF JERSEY CITY AT THE TIME UNDER THE FIRST AFRICAN AMERICAN MAYOR IN THE HISTORY OF JERSEY CITY NJ , THE LATE , GREAT, HONORABLE MAYOR GLENN D. CUNNINGHAM. I WISHES YOU GOD’S SPEED IN ALL YOUR FUTURE ENDEAVORS

  4. Alfred C. Meyers, Sr

    I have a great deal of value for this president and feel confident that with our uninterrupted help he will continue do positive things for America. The President is one person on the team trying to make a difference in the lives of all Americans. I truly believe that his heart he would like to make things transform with the wave of his hand but you and I both know that won’t happen. Now we can yell at the top of our voices for change to happen immediately but it just don’t work that way.
    Unfortunately, those of color have been held down so long by those repulsive intolerable people in control for so long that neither a one term president nor a four term president can change the cycle but we can certainly put a bite in the system as it is, where change will be forthcoming as long as we continue to bite for justice..
    It begins with the UNITED people and I feel we will see the change we want if we truly got involved and stayed involved. It’s the American people that will have to make it happen. What do you say if we all begin in the homes with mothers and fathers, single Parents and just lump all parents in the fight? The beginning is with the youngest; the babies on up through the young adults.
    This education focus you hear so much about is the real key to the success of our country. As long as parents don’t take a hand in teaching discipline, respect, commitment, just to name a few of the major areas of concern but just as important, a show of active assertive concern for our fellow human beings; I think we will have success at the end of that road. No success comes easily or without difficulty. You remember the old saying “Anything worth having is never easy getting”. Can you imagine what it will take for parents to gather their children up and read the riot act to them relating to the dos and don’ts of being successful in our society; beginning from the day their children feet hit the ground.
    Can you imagine a school like a basic course with children that teachers go through under supervised eyes to insure that they have the tools to actually teach when they hit the class room in the real world? They must be fairly tested with a makeup of children from every ethnic group in our country? It’s a libratory for our teachers before they are given the freedom to work with our children. People can do incredible things on paper but how good can they be where the rubber meets the road?
    Tell me; what President you know of time gone by was able to turn things around as quickly as the society wants from this one? Again! What President ever went into office with the challenges confronting President Obama in his first two years in office? Can you recall any of the issues?
    My goodness folks look at what has happened to our country; I think we all were knocked down but standing tall inside all the time that standing tall is becoming a reality again; we have gotten up and beginning to standing tall again.
    Why all of a sudden the deficit is a problem? It’s been a problem for many years before Obama came into the picture. Even though it cost to invest; investing in the country by not only our government but by the people in the country; more so! It will relive the deficit pressure over the long haul but what do we do about inflation? How long will we be able to sustain increases every year? That is one of our real future battles; inflation. We must get a handle on inflation somehow!
    I know that there are wealthy people who are concerned about the country that made them wealthy and those who are greed blind them from really seeing the reality of reaching out to help their own country because the mighty dollar is first and foremost. This is taught in our society but should we focus on different values or is being rich our only interest; regardless how we get there?
    How many wealthy people prey on the country? Taking jobs, their money and God knows what else out of the country? Why shouldn’t they be a part of the recovery process? All of what they have will be left here when they go to the undiscovered place from which none return.
    As it concerns every living American we must begin the healing by helping, teaching, volunteering, sharing, and giving back. People living in the inner cities have the tough fight but we must understand that every Man, Woman and child in America is in this together.
    If we want to have continuity in the work already put in place by this president it will be absurd to say the least to change presidents in the middle of this fight. He is our man yesterday, today and tomorrow; vote Barack Obama for President in 2012.

  5. pmbalele

    Have you noticed President Obama has similar voice and traits as Dr. King, Jr and Jack Kennedy. Please listen carefully to his voice when giving speech. He sometimes sounds like Dr. King. By other way, do you know when Obama gives a speech he actually talks to your heart and soul? This is because President Obama gives his speech through his own heart and soul. That is what motivates me to support President Obama policies. Let’s prepare for his re-election in 2012. GOP governors have attacked unions in public sector. Now even the private sector employees are scared their unions will be attacked by GOP governors. Farmers, iron workers, doctors, nurses, doctors, auto-assembly workers, high way construction workers, etc are scared of GOP leaders. American people are being abused by GOP. There is now a revolt against GOP. Instead of TEA Party, there is now Labor Union Party. Labor Union Party is composed of all workers in government and private sector. Even TEA Partiers, some of whom are government workers, have now joined Labor Union party. American people have vowed to revenge against Republicans in 2012. No Republicans will be elected next year. I am telling you, there will be largest election turnout in 2012. Guess who will benefit next year- democrats and President Obama. We may as well now prepare for Obama re-election next year.

  6. Pingback: President Obama’s Remarks at the National Action Network – Source: The Boyce Blog « The Political Agitator

  7. Congratulations to Rev. Al Sharpton and The National Action Network on 20 years of political and civil action on behalf of all people. He is an amazing person who is committed to justice and equality. President Obama’s presence and speech at the event was timely and necessary. I have been waiting for him to finally start touting the successes of his administration by referring people to the presidential website. He should also weave these accomplishments into his apppeaances at every opportunity. Rev. Al talks the talk and walks the walk in setting up plans and accountabilities for the African American agenda. All to often in the past their were forums and conferences on the African American platform with noted African American speakers stating what the problems were but offering no solutions. Now that Rev. Al has added an annual accountability factor to the mix, it will be interesting to see what happens. In other words those offering constructive retoric will now have to act and report on the progress or get off the pot so to speak. Continue to do what you do. You are truly making a difference in peoples lives.

  8. Marie Engles

    Thanks for posting the President’s Remarks!!!

  9. It is one thing to talk in the name of a party but another to stand up for the issues one believe in regardless to what party it is. Must America keep waiting for a party or a group to pave the way for the people.

  10. Zelma Owens

    I here PRESIDENT Obama’s plea to the Afircan American People When he only
    constructed policies to service Anglo Elite. What did he do for poor men’s in this county that has been exploitate by State Child Support Laws. He sign the Father Responabilty Act without concern with the circumstance that exist
    How men’s deprive of constitional right and human rights in this country.
    The Government intervenion into the union between man and women has destory our society for there on self interest. It’s profitable for the state to encourage women’s to be a single parent and a single household Revenue. There is a cruel Inhumane Family Law System driven by self interest . I need to talk to president Obama Where questions presented to the president about our
    condition this public forum did not invite poor people

  11. Jesse Bennefield

    The remards by the President are uplifting and is very informative in understanding the pro’s and con’s of this point in our history of America.

  12. James B

    Sounds like you just don’t get it. It appear that the President is in fact in campaign mode and doing what he does best and that is give a good speech. He doesn’t deserve my support and certainly will not be getting it. Hotep

  13. James B

    I concur whole heartly with you and your comments. I could not have said it better myself. Since the president is supposedly so right on with his comments, let’s see how much money he will be spending with the black media outlets, print and electronic around the country this time. Remember he spent little to none in 2008. This man has no affinty for the Afrikans in america community, he talks a good game. I reside in Chicago i know from whence he came. He was selected by the powers that shouldn’t be to do exactly what he has done to date. Hotep

  14. James B

    The President can not hold a candle to either Dr. King or President Kennedy, so said for you to make that connection, what a leap.

  15. William Hilliard

    I hold President Obama in high regard. He is my kind of a man and a leader. He is blessed to have Michelle as his help mate. God bless America and all it’s residents.

  16. Sharon

    Alfred,

    You hit all the key points on this one, it’s not about on party, it’s about one people. After all the years and years of corruption and abuse what did we think would eventually happen to this country. One last thing to add is how much I see our culture (African American) stay divided more than any other group in this country I.M.O.!! That’s why everyone supasses us and we question the motives of this 1st black president? If we don’t stand together and unite you can be rest assured they will make certain another black president see the White House. Like he’s been saying since he started his election, people must to have forgotten where we started before he set foot in Washington. Good, Bad or Indifferent I’ve never witnessed any president step in and make things happen as he did, He faced so many big challengens all at once and began attacking them as his opponents continued to attack him. The other party did everything and still continue to do to keep from supporting this president. The sad part is he’s not the one suffering as a result, it’s the people.

  17. Teresa

    I believe that President Obama is a good man who understands our Constituion and also understands that change does not happen overnight. As he repeatedly stated throughout his campaign for the 2008 election, he cannot do anything alone. It is up to the American people – of every background – to work on changing the policies of this nation. That change will not occur quickly just as the problems did not occur instantly. I trust that President Obama’s heart is in the right place, but I am also aware that the forces of intolerance and greed hold sway. We are the change we have been looking for. And yes, I will again vote for Barack Obama in 2012.

  18. Siddan

    I send best wishes to rev Al and staff at National Action Network for the wonderful work you do everyday…also wishing for your most successful and productive conference yet. Thanks also for reminding the folks at MSNBC once more the prez Obama is not just prez of black america; he’s prez o all of America. Regarding the comments by wizard G, too bad he sees the glass as half empty. You would think that one would see something positive from a 15 minute by the prez of the US, but I guess you call it as you see it. I respectfully differ with you on most of you comments and wish to respond.

    “We are ones being shot down in the streets by…racists cops”. Question, what exactly do you want Obama to do and what exactly are you doing about it. Obama don’t sit on your city or county commission who do the hiring and he’s certainly not a civil rights worker like Rev Al. So what do you want him to do?

    “We are the ones being stuffed deeply into the prison system…”. Again, what are you doing and what do you expect the president to do. One of those admendments to the constitution prohibits the prez from interfering the state selection of more fair judges, so again, will have to be dealt ith at the local level.
    “We are the ones who will be denied jobs first” you claim. Question, don’t you agree that’s kind of generic and dangerous in the sense that it discourages rather than encourage people to look for jobs. Obama has done a good job in terms of expanding opportunities for training. I know there are problems but please clarify what it is you think the prez can do on this count.

    “we are the ones who must sit back and watch as so-called leaders pretend to be savior of middle-east and african nations…”. Am not quite sure what your point is on this, but the policy that justifies US involvement in those areas predates the obama admin. He could fight for a different policy but that would be a losing cause if you understand our history. Go back a hundred years and you will find similar interventions. So more than likely if you disagree on that small but important area of US foreign–which will never change, you may want to consider immigrating to a nation that don’t believe a strong military has a role in foreign policy. All in all this writer thinks the prez gave a good speech today and yes, he is running for reelection, and quite frankly he has loads of accomplishments that should serve him well in that effort.

  19. Ruby

    Too many of us are too quick to desert our president. We have been so patient for so long that we want him to move mountains immediately. What he needs now is not our faint hearts but our strong commitment to help him complete his job.

  20. cedric dalton

    The saying fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me rings true in reference to President Obama and anyone in poloitics who effects the lives of americans in this country. His speech as usual is too polarize the people who have no idea of what is going on in this country. Here we are getting ready to run for office again and the same old promises. I voted for Mr. Obama once and that will be the last time. I am not impreseed that he surrounded himself with corporate elitists who have no idea of the hurts and pains of the common middle class and poor people in this country. What i saw during President Obama’s term was the rich being given breaks and the middle class taken for a ride. Homes were lost, pension plans stolen outright, and business leaving the country in mass. Right now collective bargaining is being attacked by the republicans and he is silent on that .I don’t understand how a President can receive a nobel peace prize and then lead thousands of our youth to their deaths in stupid wars that we do not belong in. ..no I will not vote for any more of this insanity and will not fall for the okie doke as Mr. Obama stated one time.

  21. PHIL BLACKMEN

    NOT VOTING AGAIN FOR HIM..

  22. Sharon

    If it were not for gov’t intervention there would be no consequences to deadbeat parents who do not take care of their own. As a single parent myself raising two children I can attest it was not expected to end as it began??? It’s not the fault of the govt or anyone else for that matter, it was poor choice in selection on my part but a gift and two blessings at the same time. I can proudly state despite the absentee parent I did what I had to do and put both through school and never once sought for child support. Eventually it would not have mattered anyway since they could never hold a steady job but managed to bring as many as 8 children into the world at my last count. The government or any other system should have to enforce responsibility to take care of our own children, unfortunately for many that’s the reality. President Obama has through many efforts tried to correct and mend many of these broken policies and for that I commend him.

  23. ronnie patrick

    I voted for Obama and will vote again for him. I will help raise money, go from door to door, make phone calls , give of my finances, and anything else that needs to be done to get him elected again. Obama has done more in two years than Bush did in eight years. Obama was left with a mess and it is going to take him a second term to clean it up and I am supporting him. For you ney sayers out there be ware of what you say and do. Obama is chosen by a higher power and that is a fact. If you think voting for the Republicans think about last week-end. Some of you people have not learned anything have you. Obama I am on your side and I will be voting and working for you and everyone in my circle will support you also.

  24. ronnie patrick

    Some of you just don’t get it. What is it going to take? I would be ashamed if I were a Republican. I certainly would not tell anyone I was with the TEA PARTY (WHITE HOOD CLAN), GLENN BECK, SARA PALIN and the rest of the really bad, bad people. Obama has more prayers out there then anyone we all know. For that reason he will not fail. Let Glen Beck’s departure be a lesson to the country. Glen Beck was fired from FOXX NEWS and there will be others following him. Don’t try to destory Obama it won’t work.

  25. Rose

    This man is trying to represent All Americans. He cannot single out one group to represent. We all know that Education is the key to better jobs and a better economy. He tried to make it easier for Black Americans to get a good education. I encouraged everyone that I know to get their GED and pursue higher learning. I asked them to go to school while the door is open. A local Techincal School in our town is in a predominately black neighborhood and most of the students are white. Old and young uplifiting themselves, taking advantage of higher learning while the opportunity presents itself. When those republicans get things they way they want, we will see the difference. Our people are busy going to jail and killing police officers when they need to be in school buckling down to be ready when the “real crunch” starts.. You may feel that President Obama is not doing anything, wait and see when the Republican President takes over.. Only the wealthy will have fun as things were in the Bush years.

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