As President Barack Obama is not only the 44th president of our country, but he will also be forever known as the first African-American president.
Brief summary of the basic facts:
His election to the highest office in the land should have been a monumental milestone in the country's history. With respect to the civil rights movement and race relations in America his election would seem to indicate that we as a people have seemingly healed ourselves from many self-inflicted wounds.
On the surface that's how everything should have unfolded and revealed during his first term in office. However, history will show that the man who was expected to unite this country may have brought about even greater division and suspicion between the races. Only history will reveal whether or not we are justified in our thinking.
President Barack Obama does not share a history that is similar to former presidents in many ways. Primarily, his parents and upbringing is quite different and thus has impacted his views of the world and his decision-making.
His mother, Ann Dunham, was married several times to men who were not American in either ideology or lifestyle. His biological father, Barack Obama Sr., was born in Kenya and grew up herding goats. He was able to fulfill a dream of his by attending college at the University of Hawaii by earning a scholarship. Not much is know about the manner in which this scholarship was earned.
While attending the University of Hawaii he met Ann Dunham. They were married February 2, 1961 and 6 months later Barack was born.
Obama Sr. Had very little fatherly impact on his son as he soon left his family to attend Harvard University to pursue his PhD. They Ultimately divorced in 1964. He later returned to Kenya in 1965.
As a result, the future President's first years were spent not only without his fathers presence but also without exposure to the lower 48 states. The Hawaiin culture and mindset is quite different from the masses from the mainland.
It was in 1965 that his mother then met an East-West student from Indonesia, Lolo Soetoro, and were married that year. At this time it appears that Ann Dunham has found a father figure for her son. Unfortunately, the family moved to Indonesia a year later.
The first four years of his life were seemingly very unstable and subject to influences that would color his view of America and the American dream.
With the absence of his biological father the life of President Barack Obama was not an easy one with regard to establishing his identity and self-worth. Going through school as a multi-racial child must not have been easy especially during the late 60's and then the 70's.