I recently read “Audacity of Hope”, an exciting, and inspiring book written by Barack Obama. I’ve followed his presidential race from the fall of 2007, the rise of a sincere politician, who stood almost no chance of making it to the most powerful position, but for his sincere love towards his country and the principles that he cherish the most. I had read few other books on him, but none so profound as this (mostly because this is his own view about the world).
The book was an experience, rather than a literary piece of work. It factually describes the current situation in the backdrop of a nation whose image has been tarnished largely due to its foreign policy and whose economy is tumbling. The book gives a direct insight into the thoughts and principles of a person, who is half black, half white, grown up in trans-continental conditions (Indonesia, Hawaii…), worked hard at everything he believed in, and most importantly stood for the welfare of people. I may sound a bit pro-Obama, but can’t help it. “May be I am on the wrong side of history…”, a quote from his book is the best answer I could give you.
The story of this young politician, (often quoted in India as a lucky chap to have won the presidency with just two years of work) is deep rooted in his ability to touch the heart of millions. His concern for the food, health, job and security of his countrymen and the world as a whole. Now, what am I doing, as an Indian, boasting off a book written by an American politician (another cliche??). This is exactly what I thought when I decided to put a post on my blog.
Here is a person who is not just interested in the rhetoric of American nationalism, and the pride of being an American, but a sincere, family man, having two children, concerned about the whole of humanity. A man who believes not in the tactics of politics, but in the power of men and women to make a change in that politics. “I am asking you, not to believe in my ability, but in your ability to make a change”, was a catch phrase during his presidential race. It gave a hope, unprecedented in the recent past, to the millions of poor and middle-class Americans. His principles cross far beyond the boundaries of nations. The principles of charity, humanity, a willingness to share and cooperate (rather than compete mindlessly). These principles, which none could use to win an election these days, are the very same that won him the presidential seat.
This is exactly what I liked about the book. It makes me think straight. Gives me hope that things could change, however bad the situation may be. A sense, somewhere deep in my heart, that things could change for good back in my country too. That, when people are given a choice, a fair choice, to choose between good and bad, they will always choose the right one. It is here, that our role as people who are forged into a nation of a billion, with an inherent diversity (unlike the west), has a fair chance to choose. Not politically between party lines, but between a true sense of humanness and an ugly face of selfishness. This is a choice that all of us can make. When Warren Buffet speaks against “lavish tax cuts for the rich”, my beliefs in the core values, that make a human, are reinforced. This is the essential message that I gained through this book.