Because Barack Obama has been laying low since he left the presidency and Donald Trump became president, many people are relieved and happy that he is finally speaking up about the current state of politics in this country.
In his speech he did not mention the current president by name, which is understandable, because many good Democrats have a very difficult time uttering the name of one of the most unpopular and dangerous presidents to reside in the White House in U.S. history.
However Obama did gratify his partisan audience by making some extremely politicized comments which he has seldom done since he left the White House.
In his remarks Obama said:
“Fear is powerful. Telling people that somebody’s out to get you, or somebody took your job, or somebody has it out for you, or is going to change you, or your community, or your way of life — that’s an old story and it has shown itself to be powerful in societies all around the world. It is a deliberate, systematic effort to tap into that part of our brain that carries fear in it.”
He then advised Democrats to look forward to the 2018 elections as a way to inspire and effectuate change in this country, and to not focus on just one leader to fix the Democratic Party. He said:
“Do not wait for the perfect message, don’t wait to feel a tingle in your spine because you’re expecting politicians to be so inspiring and poetic and moving that somehow, ‘OK, I’ll get off my couch after all and go spend the 15-20 minutes it takes for me to vote. If we don’t vote, then this democracy doesn’t work.”
Obama also seemed willing to accept some of the blame for the state of the Democratic Party, and the fact that Republicans have become dominant not only in Washington but in the majority of state governments also.
“I’ll be honest with you, if I have a regret during my presidency, it is that people were so focused on me and the battles we were having, particularly after we lost the House, that folks stopped paying attention up and down the ballot,” he said.