Politics

Moms Talk Obama

Mocha Moms talk with Madeleine Brand
NPR Staff Photo

I sat down with a group of African-American moms the other day to talk about what it means to them that the country may, for the first time, elect a black president. Well, actually, I was more a fly-on-the-wall, privy to a private conversation I don't usually hear, as I'm not black.

No surprise that everyone in this group is voting for Obama and is happy and proud to do so. Yet their views are more complicated. A couple of the moms voted for Hillary Clinton in the primary, and were skeptical of Barack Obama's celebrity.

"I'm uncomfortable with the idol worship," said Ellen, who is voting for Obama, but not-so-secretly likes Sarah Palin.

Nicole said she didn't want to drink the Obama Kool-Aid initially, but then was put off by what she called Hillary Clinton's sense of entitlement. "He asked for my vote," said Nicole. "That was important."

The moms argued about whether - if Obama is elected - there could be a racial backlash. Shauna said she thought his candidacy has ushered in a new era in race relations. Other moms were more cynical and even fearful that African-Americans could be the targets of anger come November 5th. Our interview ended with this question: what do you tell your children about this election?

Your turn, now. What do you tell your kids? What do you think about what Obama's candidacy has or hasn't done for race relations?

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