Every generation has its photos that seem to capture an entire era in a moment. When we think of WWII, we think of this photo:
For most baby boomers, these photos capture the times in which we grew up:
Today I think we could do far worse than to have this photo epitomize the Obama era:
I saw this photograph last week and it's stayed in my mind ever since. Look at the smile on that child's face as he's held by a man who just might be our next president -- a man who looks like him. Look at the man, presumably the child's father, getting ready to take a photograph that both he and his son will treasure forever. Look at Barack Obama's face as he holds this child, fully aware of what he has come to mean to not just this child, not just this father, not just to black Americans, but to all of us who think that America has a responsibility to be better than the hate and fearmongering and narrow-mindedness and racism of the Republican party in this millennium.
I love this photo. I love this photo because in capturing three American black males at a critical point in our history, it also depicts a universality that Republicans want us to forget. I look at this photograph and I think of another photo of a boy with a president
; a photo capturing a moment that inspired that boy to a career in public service. And then I look at this child's beautiful, happy face and I wonder if someday we will see him too stand on the steps of a historic hall and announce his own candidacy for the presidency.
Labels: Barack Obama