As the child of a black man and white woman Barack Obama is often (simply) referred to as 'black'. A description that will one day serve to display a time of ignorance - because Barack Obama is much much more.
"There is not a black America and a white America and Latino America and Asian America - there's the United States of America," Obama once wrote.
However, note in the above paragraph from his book The Audacity of Hope that there is no capital letter on black and white. In fact, neither is a nation, and neither is a culture. Obama, born between the two, has already made the journey and knows this. And, although many in the US have leaned heavily on 'skin' difference for quite some time this presidential candidate - if elected - would help a young nation recognise that any 'difference' between them is countered by that which unites: America.
Meanwhile, in 2008, a fledgling nation stands at the crossroads. A presidential candidate, born in the racial melting pot of Hawaii, with a half Indonesian sister, a brother in-law and niece of Chinese descent, with blood relatives who resemble Margaret Thatcher, and others who could pass for Bernie Mac? America, you decide.
But before you do: ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.