Obama Vs. American Views
The positive views will always take over the negative.
Recently I wrote about the U.S. presidential election, but even with the results in, I continue to be struck by the international response. Shortly after the results were announced, I began receiving calls and emails from friends and clients all over the world, expressing a range of emotions including excitement, discomfort, reservation and hope. This in itself is quite remarkable and gives me hope at a time when our world needs, more than ever, to work together to face our mounting challenges.
Of course, in Britain and in much of Europe, Obama’s victory has been met with both excitement and enthusiasm for the American people and for what they accomplished. Europeans seem to believe that this election represents a shift in thinking about American policies and racial issues. They feel that this decision will help to redeem America in the eyes of those who have developed negative feelings over the last decade.
A long-time client in Hong Kong also rang to tell me how pleased the Chinese people seemed by the fact that the U.S. has finally elected a bi-racial president, especially one who has been so vocal about his strong global views. Even in the Middle East, there seems to be a feeling of relief as a result of president-elect Obama’s views on the U.S. involvement in the war-torn regions in that part of the world.
I very much enjoyed following the enthusiastic responses in Africa, and in particular in Kenya, the homeland of Obama’s father. The African people obviously feel a close tie to this man who represents a strong connection between the two continents. Likewise, the pride that many African-Americans have expressed in lieu of the president-elect’s achievements has also been very touching.
Of course, I know that not everyone is happy with the election results but there are still points that should be celebrated. It is good to see that so many American citizens chose to take advantage of their right and privilege to vote. The substantial increase in voters who actually went to the polls is remarkable and represents hope for the democratic process. Likewise, the fact that many Americans looked beyond race when they marked their ballot choice is a win for democracy for all the world’s citizens.
It is important for all of us to feel hope and to feel the ability to make our world a better place.