Jim Jenkins declared in his Jan. 12 column that “Obama never feared challenges.” I propose President Obama’s next one – a rational, balanced and progressive movement on behalf of people beguiled by Donald Trump.
The words of Obama’s farewell have set in motion startling, but fitting, roles for him as advocate and community organizer for “the middle-aged white man who from the outside may seem to have all the advantages, but who’s seen his world upended by economic, cultural and technological change.”
Recasting last July’s Obama observation in Dallas: “When Americans voice a growing despair over a game that’s fixed against them, we can’t simply dismiss it. To have your experience denied like that, dismissed by those in authority (or politicians, Hollywood, campus and media elites); dismissed again and again and again, it hurts. Surely we can see that, all of us.”
Building upon and refashioning Obama’s own farewell words, we are admonished that hearts must change; that we must feel others value hope, fairness, and family like we do; that they can make a fair point; that morals, science and reason matter; and that fears, perceptions of injustice, and experience of rebuke, must be listened to and understood and our own thinking, not deserted, but recalibrated.
Douglas A. Johnston