These are my friends! They are walking around "Islamic Cairo." We went to old mosques, and stuff.
I just finished having a long string of guests come visit me here in Egypt. It was great to see friends from Oberlin and catch up on gossip and talk about whatever. And I won’t even go into how happy I was to see Helen. I think she liked being here, too.
One of the other things that I’ve enjoyed about having friends come through Cairo has been the opportunity to be a tour guide. It’s made me realize how well I’ve gotten to know the city in my first five months here. At the same time, it reminded me how much more I want to do here. There are still tourist sites I haven’t seen, neighborhoods I don’t know that well, restaurants I want to eat at, etc., etc.
Naturally, I miss my girlfriend, my family, and my friends back home. But these days I’m feeling pretty damn good about living in Egypt. (But not the government, of course.)
Anyway, stay tuned.
I promise that soon I will stop with the Obama lovefest and get into topics that I might have something to say about. But as I’ve been explaining my Obamamania to friends at Oberlin, I realized that I need to articulate a point that is important to me.
I believe in Barack Obama because America needs a new face. We need someone who can change the way that people view our country. Barack Obama can be that face.
George Bush has done one thousand and one bad things for America. But if I were to prioritize that list, I would put discrediting and generally destroying America’s reputation around the world. When I was in Jordan I heard from people again and again—from taxi drivers to teachers!—“Bush is very, very bad. But Clinton… He was good.” People around the world pay attention to who is the President of the United States of America.
Can you imagine how it could look to people around the world—from Jordan to Malaysia to Chad—if Barack Obama were the president of the United States? Barack Hussein Obama, who is half Kenyan. Who grew up in Muslim Indonesia* and multiracial Hawaii. Who once said that the azaan, the Muslim call to prayer is “one of the prettiest sounds on Earth at sunset”? (And it really is!) Who can at least pronounce the name of South Asian countries with a somewhat respectable accent?
I’m not saying that I support Barack Obama because he is the Ethnic candidate. I am saying that I support him because he is the Global Candidate. He is a man who belongs to the Twenty First Century, who belongs to a world where we are all connected to each other very, very closely and the Cowboy shtick isn’t amusing anyone anymore.
The world is changing quickly, before our eyes, and we need someone who understands that fact to lead our country into this new era. Barack Obama can be that leader.
* Correction: Previously posted, incorrectly, as the Philippines
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