chapter  1
16 Pages

INTRODUCTION

By the time this book comes out Senator Barack Obama will either be the fi rst Black president of the United States or he will be the fi rst Black person who came the closest to becoming president. Th is realization occurs even though it is well known that Senator (or President at this time?) Obama has a White mother and an African father. He is the product of a multiracial marriage, a fact that is not insignifi cant in shaping his chances of winning the election. Th is important phenomenon demonstrates how race relations has changed through the years and shapes who we are in this country. Even today, many perceive multiracial families as the hope for our future despite our racist past. Historically individuals who have partial Black heritage have been seen as Black (note that Senator Obama is not seen as White even though he has as much European genetic lineage as he does African). Since it can be argued that Senator Obama’s multiracial background has helped, not hurt, his opportunities to become President, it can be argued that this political race is indicative of the changing racial climate in America.1