Best Speeches from Barack ObamaIncludes speeches delivered before, during, or after his presidency.
"There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there's the United States of America...The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue States...But I've got news for them, too...We coach little league in the blue states and, yes, we've got some gay friends in the red states...We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America."
"In the end, that's what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism, or do we participate in a politics of hope?...I'm not talking about blind optimism here...I'm talking about something more substantial. It's the hope of slaves sitting around a fire singing freedom songs; the hope of immigrants setting out for distant shores; the hope of a young naval lieutenant bravely patrolling the Mekong Delta; the hope of a millworker's son who dares to defy the odds; the hope of a skinny kid ...more
" This election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. But one that's on my mind tonight's about a woman who cast her ballot in Atlanta. She's a lot like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election except for one thing: Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old. She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons -- because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin. And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in America -- the heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can."
"The church contains in full the kindness and cruelty, the fierce intelligence and the shocking ignorance, the struggles and successes, the love and yes, the bitterness and bias that make up the black experience in America... I can no more disown [Reverend Wright] 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."
"This whole week, I've been reflecting on this idea of grace. The grace of the families who lost loved ones; the grace that Reverend Pinckney would preach about in his sermons; the grace described in one of my favorite hymnals, the one we all know..."Amazing Grace. How sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now I'm found, was blind but now I see."
"It has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things -- some celebrated, but more often men and women obscure in their labor -- who have carried us up the long rugged path towards prosperity and freedom...For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate...This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed, why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall; and why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served in a local restaurant can now stand before ...more
"Each time I learn the news I react not as a President, but as anybody else would -- as a parent...The majority of those who died today were children -- beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. They had their entire lives ahead of them -- birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own. Among the fallen were also teachers -- men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams. So our hearts are broken today."
"That's what it means to love America...For we were born of change... We're the immigrants who stowed away on ships to reach these shores, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free, Holocaust survivors, Soviet defectors, the Lost Boys of Sudan...We're the slaves who built the White House...the fresh-faced GIs who fought to liberate a continent...We're the firefighters who rushed into those buildings on 9/11...the gay Americans whose blood ran on the streets of San Francisco and New York, just as blood ran down this bridge. We are storytellers, writers, poets, and artists who abhor unfairness, and despise hypocrisy, and give voice to the voiceless, and tell truths that need to be told... Because Selma shows us that America is not the project of any one person. Because the single most powerful word in our democracy is the word 'We.' We The People. We Shall Overcome. Yes We Can."
"I have no more campaigns to run...I know because I won both of them."
"As I go around the room suddenly I hear this voice cry out behind me 'fired up'...And the 20 people in the room act like this happens all the time and they say 'ready to go'... After a minute or so I am feeling kind of fired up. I'm feeling like I'm ready to go. So I join in the chant... Here's my point, Virginia. That's how this thing started. It shows you what one voice can do. That one voice can change a room. And if a voice can change a room, it can change a city, and if it can change a city, it can change a state, and if it can change a state, it can change a nation, and if it can change a nation, it can change the world."
"I've come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition."
"I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn't steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. These are not just American ideas; they are human rights."
"Ignorance is not a virtue. It's not cool to not know what you're talking about. That's not keeping it real, or telling it like it is. That's not challenging political correctness. That's just not knowing what you're talking about."
"You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African American community at least, there's a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it's important to recognize that the African American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that doesn't go away."