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Friday, January 11, 2008

Signs of the Times

For a few days we had an African American Presidential front runner. Now we have "solidly middle class" single mothers. Mark Kleiman reports

A progressive colleague writes:

Based on Obama's speeches, I don't get a strong feeling that he identifies with the poor.

Based on "reading" The Audacity of Hope as an audiobook, I think that's true, but it only expresses half of the truth of the matter.

Obama doesn't identify with the poor in the sense that he doesn't think of himself as poor, or formerly poor, or having poor relatives. He grew up without much money, but in cultural terms his upbringing was solidly middle-class. (Maybe he has poor in-laws.)

Obama's parents separated when he was two. Look the guy is young, but that was not a solidly middle class experience in 63 or 63 when it happened. A "broken home" could not be solidly anything except an explanation of grimlife outcomes back then.

I remember (my parents just celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary and I my background is solidly upper middle class).

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