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October 2, 2008

Why Obama, by Alex Lilly (Obi Best)

Why Obama is a series of guest essays by musicians and authors, where they share their support for Democratic United States presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama and offer arguments why he needs to be elected president of the United States.

Alex Lilly is the keyboardist and vocalist for Obi Best.The band's debut album, Capades, is available as a limited edition CD from the band's website and at digital music outlets.

In her own words, here is Alex Lilly's Why Obama essay :

Elitist. Hmmmm…McCain and his Republican colleagues have called Barack Obama an elitist. This remark, meant to be a criticism, was ironically aimed at a man raised by a single mom, and issued by a man who owns seven houses and is part of the party that has widened the gap between wealthy and middle-class to an unprecedented level. But if by elitist, they mean someone who doesn't say "misunderestimated," then Barack is indeed an elitist. And thank God because it's time to have a president that's not only far more educated than our current president but perhaps even smarter than the average American!

When September 11th hit, there was such an outpouring of sympathy extended towards the United States. I remember watching the news and seeing people's tear-stained faces speaking on the US's behalf in foreign tongues; people lighting candles in countries I couldn't identify. That would have been a time to unite – to work with allies and other foreign powers to find those actually responsible for the terrorist attacks. Instead, we alienated ourselves from the world by forging an unjust war. And from the very beginning, Obama had the foresight to know that this was a war not worth fighting. (I'll admit right now that even though I strongly opposed the Bush administration's domestic policies, I did not realize then that we were being duped by our government. I trusted that the war was necessary. And that is why I am not writing an essay called "Why Alex"!)

We need Barack Obama in office -- we need a thinker, not a reactor. We need someone who is respectful, who brings dignity back to the US, who can unite countries and people. During his days as an editor at Harvard Law Review, Obama was famous for finding common ground among seemingly disparate voices. Is this not an essential part of foreign policy? This seems like a particularly important ability for the president to have in our current political climate.

For those of you who are concerned about Global Warming, vote for Obama. For those of you who want the troops to return home from Iraq within fourteen months, vote for Obama. For those of you who do not want our sisters, our daughters our friends and ourselves to be denied the right to seek an abortion, vote for Obama. For those of you who want our veterans to get adequate care when they are released from duty, vote for Obama. For those of you who think education is a priority, vote for Obama. For those of you who feel that it's time to seize power from a corrupt party that is steadily gutting this country of its wealth, resources, and beauty, vote for Obama.

Let's talk economics…briefly. I want to insert an interesting fact regarding our economy under a Democratic administration compared with our current economy under the Republican administration. At the end of Bill Clinton's term, we had an enormous surplus and we were not involved in a complicated, costly, losing war. Under our current administration, we are trillions of dollars in debt and in an economic crisis worse than any period since the Great Depression.

For a moment, let's push aside emotionally resonant words like "change" and "hope", which have been the spirited cornerstones of Barack Obama's campaign. Let's vote for Obama out of pure self-interest; Out of a need to receive social security when we're 65; Out of a want to not die early from cancer because of lax environmental regulations; Out of a desire to avoid paying for unprepared teenagers' children because abortion is made illegal. Let's do what the corporations do – let's vote for what best serves us. Perhaps there is something we can learn from Republicans. Let's take a page from their book – let's get selfish; let's get single-minded; let's vote, rain or shine -- Let's win.

Obi Best links:

Obi Best's website

Barack Obama link:

Barack Obama presidential campaign website

also at Largehearted Boy:

other Why Obama essays
Book Notes (authors create playlists for their book)
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
guest book reviews
musician/author interviews