Wherefore art thou, Barack Obama?


Has Obama finally answered the question on every Democrat’s mind: Who’s going to bring us together?

When the email showed up in my inbox, I was quivering with anticipation.

“My announcement regarding party unity” was the subject line.

The sender was Barack Obama!

Was this it? Was this finally the moment when Barack Obama took his rightful place as leader of the Democratic party? The moment when the last Democratic president, the man who’s been succeeded by a crude despot wannabe bent on overturning every one of his accomplishments, the man who has refused to speak ill or even speak out about the incompetent who is ruining America and the world, the man who’s leadership is desperately needed to ensure that his successor does not win another election…is this the moment when Barack Obama, seeing his party and his country in disarray, finally stands up and takes charge?

The first paragraph of the email was tantalizing.

“This election will be more important than any in our lifetimes, and I say that having run for president twice. Every ounce of progress that you and I won together is on the line — from health care for all, to an economy that works for everyone, to a habitable planet for future generations.”

What’s next, I thought. What was the announcement that will unite the party in a coordinated, winning approach that will defeat Donald Trump?

The email went on.

All those reasons and more are why we must come together to elect a Democrat to the White House and win seats in every corner of our country.”

OK, you’ve set me up. I’m getting ready, Barack, for you to deliver the punch line, the words that will bring us together and bring an end to the horror show that’s been the Democratic primary.

I can feel it coming. I’m ready for the BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!

Make a $7 contribution to the Democratic Unity Fund to give our eventual nominee for president and Democrats nationwide the resources they’ll need to win.

Wait, what? Barack Obama’s announcement regarding “party unity” was yet another pitch for money? Just like the 30 or so other pitches for money I get in my inbox every day from every candidate and every organization? Is that the best Obama can do?

“Committing to party unity is not always easy. But it is what this moment in our politics — and our history — demands of us. There is too much at stake to let division and hatred win this race, and that begins with unifying as one team.”

Well, Mr. President. Finally some things I can agree with.

Agreed: Party unity, especially this Democratic party at this time, is not easy. Particularly when we have candidates running for president behaving like they’re participants in a circular firing squad.

Agreed: There is too much at stake to let division and hatred win this race, and that begins with unifying as one team.

According to the New York Times, “Mr. Obama hasn’t tried to referee how the current candidates are using his name, image or record, and he has studiously avoided playing favorites. He does have opinions about the race, several of his allies say, but has made it clear that he sees his main role as unifying the party after a nominee is selected and helping ease tensions among warring supporters.”

With all due respect, isn’t that too little too late?

Here’s the thing. My $7 isn’t going to unite the party. My $7 isn’t going to end the division and hatred currently running rampant among the candidates and their supporters. A million $7 donations won’t do that. But strong, focussed leadership might be able to. And, if the best that our best, most admired leader can do is to ask for $7, get ready for four more horrific years.

Published by Ted Block

Ted Block is a veteran “Mad Man,” having spent 45+ years in the advertising industry. During his career, he was media director of several advertising agencies, including Benton & Bowles in New York and Foote, Cone and Belding in San Francisco; account management director on clients as varied as Clorox, Levi’s and the California Raisin Advisory Board (yes, Ted was responsible for the California Dancing Raisins campaign); and regional director for Asia based in Tokyo for Foote, Cone where he was also the founding president of FCB’s Japanese operations. Ted holds a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Queens College and, before starting in advertising, served on active duty as an officer on USS McCloy (DE-1038) in the U.S. Navy. Besides writing Around the Block, Ted is also a guest columnist for the Palm Beach Post.

2 thoughts on “Wherefore art thou, Barack Obama?

  1. Yup…..where the heck has President Obama been….his voice and endorsement are needed…….time to step up! J

    Sent from my iPad



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