In his last speech, Barack Obama, as a president gives a promise that authoritarianism and terrorism will be unable to defeat America until people betray their principles and constitution in the fight. Authoritarian forces and terrorists are putting American Democratic Experiment to test pressurizing the people to make government based choices more on fear and less on hope. Fear can buckle democracy he said. As citizens, people must be observant against external aggression and must resist weakening of values which makes people who they are. Outlining specific core principles which he believes are under threat primarily and the forces challenging those principles like human rights, the rule of law, freedoms of speech, religion, assembly and an independent press, he says that these are under assault due to growing inequality, demographic change, specter of terrorism and a shrinking world. Political actors compound those tectonic forces taking advantage for personal gain.
The threat that these facts impart on democracy are far more dangerous than a missile or car bomb, argues Obama. This represents fear of change, he said, fear of people who pray or look or speak differently, fear of disagreement and free thought, a fear making people believe that the bomb, propaganda machine or gun is the judge of what’s right and what’s true. His final address was conveyed with the backdrop of scandal of Trump’s alleged cooperation during the campaign with the Russian government officials reported by the New York Times and CNN. Further, they reported that operatives of Russia were collecting personal and financial information over five years on President-elect, a compilation more than sufficient, in future dealings, to blackmail him.
Obama, shedding a tear himself while thanking his daughter and wife who were already in tears, bid his final farewell turning to his supporters saying that it was an honor of his life to serve them, which he will never stop doing, maybe not as a president but as a citizen for all the time he lives. He asked them to believe, not in his ability to obtain change, but in the ability of theirs.