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againes654's Journal
Posted by againes654 in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Tue Mar 18th 2008, 11:21 PM
Barack Obama, say what you will, touched this nation in a way that few can.

Part of his speech touched me in a personal way.

I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother - a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.

This statement reminds me of a conversation that I had with my very bigoted grandfather. My Poppi passed away last year, and was 92 when he passed. The majority of his life was lived on the white side of segregation, and he always had a hard time adjusting to desegregation. I still loved him.

I loved him, when I married a hispanic man right out of high school, and had a baby. When he told me that my child would not be welcome in his house because he had "his blood in her body" I cried. Despite his feelings, and statements, when my daughter was born, his first great grandchild, he loved her. He would have spent any amount of money to help her. He even went so far as to buy my hispanic husband, my daughter, and myself a house to live in when we had none. He did this so my daughter would never want. He learned to love her, and I loved him for it.

When that same husband got another woman pregnant, and left me with nothing, my Poppi did not say, I told you so. He sent me money every month, so I could pay for child care. My daughter never wanted for anything. I loved him.

When I met the most amazing man I have ever known, and brought him to meet my grandparents, my Poppi was accommodating but, not very nice, to my new black boyfriend. It stung for me, and I can't imagine how my husband felt at the time.

That was the only time my grandparents met my husband. My grandmother passed away shortly after that. A few years later, I married this man. My grandfather was not in attendance. I didn't invite him; I knew he wouldn't come, and I didn't want to hear him say that. Shortly after we married, my Poppi moved to Az. to live in an assisted living appt.

I went to visit him several times, with my daughter, but my husband never came. Mostly because my Poppi always paid for the airfare for us to come, and I never asked for 3 tickets, and he never offered.

One day, I asked if my husband could come with us to visit if we paid for his ticket. He said, "What will my neighbors think". I cried so hard. That stung to my core. I went on that trip alone. It was a tough trip, and I was ready to go home by the end. I still loved my Poppi though.

He never got past his past, to be happy for my future. It hurt, but I did still love him. I tried to understand the time that he grew up in. I never justified it, and I still struggle with it.

Obama's speech tonight touched me, and I cried again. I understand why he couldn't disown his grandmother, and I understand why he can't disown Rev. Wright.
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