Asked to define sin, Barack Obama replied that sin is
"being out of alignment with my values."
"My friends, we live in the greatest nation in the history of the world.
I hope you'll join with me as we try to change it."
"And I am running for president, because the dreams of
the American People can not be endangered anymore."
"I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to
look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began
to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was
the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet
began to heal."
"I ceased to advertise my
mother’s race at the age of twelve or thirteen, when I began to suspect
that by doing so I was ingratiating myself to whites."
"To avoid being
mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully. The more
politically active black students. The foreign students. The
Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists."
"I learned to slip back and forth between my black and white worlds.
One of those tricks I had learned: People were satisfied so long as you
were courteous and smiled and made no sudden moves. They were more
than satisfied; they were relieved -- such a pleasant surprise to find a
well-mannered young black man who didn't seem angry all the time."
"I had learned not to care. I blew a few smoke rings, remembering
those years. Pot had helped, and booze; maybe a little blow when
you could afford it. Not smack, though."
When he’s working on Wall Street, he’s creeped out by his visiting
mother’s insistence on seeing her favorite film, the 1959 Brazilian
art-house classic "Black Orpheus." He belatedly realizes that his
very fair-skinned mother is sexually attracted to dark men. He
pompously intones, "The emotions between the races could never be pure;
even love was tarnished by the desire to find in the other some element
that was missing in ourselves. Whether we sought out our demons or
salvation, the other race would always remain just that: menacing,
alien, and apart."
"...I've got two daughters. 9 years old and 6 years old. I am
going to teach them first of all about values and morals. But if
they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby."
"I opposed the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996. It should be
repealed and I will vote for its repeal on the Senate floor. I
will also oppose any proposal to amend the U.S. Constitution to ban gays
and lesbians from marrying."
"If [black] nationalism could create a strong and effective insularity,
deliver on its promise of self-respect, then the hurt it might cause
well-meaning whites, or the inner turmoil it caused people like me,
would be of little consequence."
"I am not in favor of concealed weapons. I think that creates a
potential atmosphere where more innocent people could (get shot during)
"We're going to reshape America in a way that is less mean-spirited and
"I can no more disown (Jeremiah Wright) than I can disown the black
"The point I was making was not that Grandmother harbors any racial
animosity. She doesn't. But she is a typical white
"That’s just how white folks will do you."
"We've got to make
sure that people who have more money help the people who have less
"Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately and see what they charge
for arugula? I mean, they’re charging a lot of money for this stuff."
"We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and
keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times ... and then just expect that
other countries are going to say OK. That's not leadership.
That's not going to happen."
"You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot
of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years
and nothing's replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton
administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive
administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna
regenerate and they have not. And it's not surprising then they
get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who
aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as
a way to explain their frustrations."
"The one thing that I want to insist on is that, as I travel around
the country, the American people are a decent people. Now they get
confused sometimes. You know, they listen to the wrong talk radio
shows or watch the wrong TV networks, um, but they’re, they’re basically
decent, they’re basically sound."
"Let me be absolutely clear.
Israel is a strong friend of Israel's. It will be a strong friend of
Israel's under a McCain...administration. It will be a strong friend of
Israel's under an Obama administration. So that policy is not going to
"If you’ve got a
business -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen."
● "And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they
cling to guns or religion or antipathy toward
people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade
sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."
● "I'm not interested in suburbs.
Suburbs bore me."
● "...so I know whose
ass to kick" (regarding the Gulf oil spill)
● "I believe in
American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that.
the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in
● Americans have become "a
little soft..." a
little bit lazy..." "have
lost our ambition, our imagination, and our
willingness to do things that built the Golden Gate Bridge" before he
● "Take off your bedroom slippers. Put on your marching shoes.
Stop complaining. Stop grumblin'. Stop cryin'." (addressing a
group of blacks decrying lack of support for
● The police "acted
stupidly" and it is "just a fact'' that
African-Americans and Latinos are disproportionately stopped by police
(weighing in on the arrest of Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr.)
● Elections are tight when you have a "funny
name" like Barack Obama and don't "look like
all those other presidents on dollar bills."
● "They talk about me
like a dog." (because, after all, Americans are
inspired by self-pitying presidents).
Republicans are "bomb throwers" and "hostage
takers" who sip Slurpees while driving the economy into the ditch; they
will "have to sit in the back of the bus". Republicans want to dig moats
and fill them with alligators to kill Hispanics slipping across the
border; they are "members of the Flat Earth Society."
● "No, no. I have been practicing... I bowled a 129. It's like
-- it was like Special Olympics, or something." --making an offhand joke
during an appearance on "The
Tonight Show", March 19, 2009
Cats" "I'm standing between you and the pitchforks."
● "I don't want to quell
anger... what I want to do is channel anger."
● "You would think they'd be saying
thank you" on Tea Party protesters who received
● "Companies like
Solyndra are leading the way toward a brighter
and more prosperous future."
are the reason I ran for office." while addressing the
Occupy Wall Street movement.
Latno voters: 'We're gonna punish our enemies and
we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are
important to us.
And my all-time favorite -- so far: