Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Grandma Hussein (Barak's other Grandmother) Out of House Arrest

Barak Obama placed his other grandmother in an Aung-San-Suu-Kyi-style home-arrest while the election was going on: "Family members and security officials barred the Media from accessing her." I guess it does not help that her name is Sarah Hussein. She gets out today.

Obama's use of his white maternal grandma as an example of an ignorant racist from another era prompted some pundits to say she has been "thrown under the bus" to score political points. Snarky comments that she recently "died from injuries from being run over by a bus" are inevitable.

Nearby cousins in Kenya also were ordered to be silent: "We were instructed not to talk to the media or anybody about the Senator"

And the Kenyan government forbade coverage of the family's election night gathering.

Hopefully the US press will now cover what is clearly a newsworthy story: the first US President to have immediate family in another country, and in such a different culture. Especially since Obama knows his family there, visits them, and writes about how important his Kenyan roots are to him.

Not covering Kenya is as clear an example of the media's self-censorship we've seen since the run-up to the Iraq War.

I wholeheartedly support Obama's presidency. The political need to manage decent and honorable, but culturally-inconvenient family members during an election may be an unpleasant but necessary evil. In the future, I would like to see a better example from him of the kind of respect we should show for our elders and family members.

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