The following piece, written by the editorial editors, reflects the majority opinion of the editorial board.
Regardless of your thoughts on President Obama’s politics, there’s no doubt that the guy is, put simply, just really cool. He has the casual air of the law professor at University of Chicago, where he worked before his presidency. He has an ability to connect with people through speaking skills that rival JFK’s and he gives the American people a sense that they matter to him. And in the final weeks of his presidency, we at The Miami Student are getting Obama nostalgia.
We’re going to miss him because of his personality. Before Obama, there was a general rule that presidents could not be funny lest they put the seriousness of their politics in jeopardy.
Not Obama. He’s been on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon,” “SNL” and “Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis.” He’s cracked savage jokes at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, sent the first tweet from the Oval Office and created somewhat of a communication legacy.
He’s set an almost unfollowable precedent in terms of connecting to the American people: by speaking effortlessly, honestly, bluntly, humanely and without script about issues facing all Americans, not just certain groups of them. In a way, he’s created a new challenge for both of America’s presidential candidates in the upcoming election. One speaks bluntly, but in a way that has alienated much of the American public. The other avoids alienation, but in a way that does not “wow” the American public like Obama’s soaring “Yes, we can” rhetoric.
We’re going to miss Obama because of the way he cared visibly about the state of the country. He cried during his speech about gun control and the Sandy Hook shootings back in 2012, and again in January of this year in a speech about gun control. He has the ability to connect with his audience on a human level, coming across as both authentic in his words and informed in his policies.
We’re going to miss Obama because we’re going to miss Michelle. The relationship between POTUS and FLOTUS is so celebrated for its mutual respect, its strength and its intimacy that in August, Miramax released “Southside with You,” a biographical film detailing the first date of Barack and Michelle.
Michelle Obama embodies excellence for women and has attempted to create a country in which all females can feel strong, important and empowered to do anything they want to do. She declared that “black girls rock” earlier this year in an encouraging statement that no other first lady has ever uttered.
She founded Let’s Move! in hopes of tackling America’s unique obesity problem, and because of her implementation of The School Lunch program, she’s responsible for making school lunches free for low-income kids, as well as making them healthier and well-balanced. She co-founded Joining Forces to help support our veterans. In short, she’s dedicated the last eight years to lifting everyone up. And we’re going to miss her —and the president — for that.
We’re going to miss Obama because he is the only president in decades that has gone this long in office without a “scandal.” We’re going to miss him for the novelty with which he has treated the position of the presidency, molding it into something that fits him and the American people of the 21st century.
We will miss his charm, the poise of his family and the way he did not allow politics to obscure his personality. His time in office has divided the country in terms of whether or not his presidency has helped or hurt America. But history will surely paint him as the most connected, genuine president this country has ever had.