I found this wonderful article from Kalamazoo, Michigan where several students were praising the accomplishments of our new President. Keith Berry, a 19 year old, African-American, at Phoenix High School in Kalamazoo states, "He went through a lot of struggles when he was younger -- hanging out with the wrong crowd, smoking things he shouldn't been smoking," Berry said. "I have a lot of struggles in my life, too. But he turned his life around by putting his head into books, just like I want to do. ... It's, like, stop trying to be a thug, making bad choices."
Keith says, he identifies with Obama's adolescence and sees him as a model on how to reform. Berry is now finishing his high school studies at Kalamazoo's Phoenix High School and also is taking classes at Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
This maybe just one story of millions. Obama has brought hope to many of our African American Males who did not have a role model to identify with. They were told by teachers and even parents that they would not amount to anything. Their hope was in gangs, drugs, the prison system. Here is someone who is telling them that you ARE SOMEBODY. Here is someone that is giving so many of our young black males hope.
Obama represents hope and change. I feel through his own sense of education and commitment ot family that these images are more positive then the images our youth are often viewing through our media.