So, it finally happened. We went through the entire 2016 election process dreading this day. Many of us voted for a candidate we barely believed in, because none of them seemed good enough to replace our beloved 44th President of the United States. We knew this day would come, but weren’t ready for it. When I say us, I’m referring to the citizens of the United States who believe in, respect and absolutely adore President Barack Obama and the First Family. I can’t and won’t speak for those who may have been indifferent about the man he is and what he stands for.
President Obama’s terms are important to me mainly because he’s the first president who I actually paid attention to. Let’s face it, I voted for the first time in 2004 as a 19 year old college student who hadn’t figured out life yet. I voted because I was supposed to, but I didn’t know much about either candidate at that time. Fast forward to 2008, I was out of school and struggling to find my way in the workforce. Life had become real for me back then, so I paid more attention.
The last eight years of my life have been the most crucial. I started and completed graduate school, found my way into my industry, and am continuously climbing the corporate ladder. Most importantly, I became a parent, which made it even more important for me to know what’s going on in the world around me. I hear so many people complaining about what President Obama did or didn’t do for the country, or them personally. For me, I’d say that he did a lot more than any other political figure ever has, and possibly will. He and his family gave me hope. Hope that even with the skin I was born in, with the racial tensions of the world, I can really and truly do anything I put my mind to. I never expected to see a Black family in the White House, never in a million years.
I get that there’s a lot more to Mr. Obama than the color of his skin, however that made a difference for myself and many others. His resume of accomplishments have been shouted to the mountaintops time and time again, yet many still refuse to admit all that he’s done to better this country. We always talk about how we don’t see enough positive representations of people who look like us in the media or entertainment. We had the greatest example of that in reality with our First Family for the last eight years, and that’s something we will never forget.
Today, we must welcome, whether we like it or not, a new President. We have our feelings about his capabilities, or lack thereof, but regardless, this is happening now. I’m terrified of what’s to come with this term, but also know that even this feeling can’t take away the sense of pride that the Obamas left us with. He’s said it several times, and because of him I truly believe, that Yes We Can! We can and we will make it through these next four years and do our parts to make sure it’s not as bad as we fear it will be. Today is truly a sad day for many. My President has officially left the building.
BEFORE YOU GO
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more information
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place