Sadly, we must say goodbye to President Obama. Yesterday, he gave a moving farewell address as his Presidency draws to a close. During his address, he called for the divisiveness which is currently gripping the US to end.
His speech comes about two weeks before President-elect Trump will actually take office. Obama was of course the first President to publicly support same-sex marriage and we saw a lot of progress made under his Presidency, so naturally he mentioned LGBT rights several times.
“For 240 years, our nation’s call to citizenship has given work and purpose to each new generation/It’s what led patriots to choose republic over tyranny, pioneers to trek west, slaves to brave that makeshift railroad to freedom.”
“It’s what pulled immigrants and refugees across oceans and the Rio Grande, pushed women to reach for the ballot, powered workers to organize. It’s why GIs gave their lives at Omaha Beach and Iwo Jima; Iraq and Afghanistan – and why men and women from Selma to Stonewall were prepared to give theirs as well.”
Of course, Obama has achieved a lot during his years in office outside of the progress made within the LGBT space. He spoke on these during his address, saying: ” If I had told you eight years ago that America would reverse a great recession, reboot our auto industry, and unleash the longest stretch of job creation in our history…”
“If I had told you that we would open up a new chapter with the Cuban people, shut down Iran’s nuclear weapons program without firing a shot, and take out the mastermind of 9/11…if I had told you that we would win marriage equality, and secure the right to health insurance for another 20 million of our fellow citizens – you might have said our sights were set a little too high.”
“But laws alone won’t be enough. Hearts must change. If our democracy is to work in this increasingly diverse nation, each one of us must try to heed the advice of one of the great characters in American fiction, Atticus Finch, who said “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”
“The refugee, the immigrant, the rural poor, the transgender American, and also the middle-aged white man who from the outside may seem like he’s got all the advantages, but who’s seen his world upended by economic, cultural, and technological change.”
If you like, you can watch his full address below but you’ll be in for the long haul as it’s over an hour long. From us here at Pride Life: goodbye, Obama. Your presence in the White House will be missed.