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Barrack Obama was 44th President of the United States. He served for 8 years from 2008 to 2016 and was the first and so far only black president that the United States has ever had. His road to the presidency was an unusual one as was his upbringing. He was born on August 4, 1961 in Hawaii. His mother was a white woman named Stanley Ann Dunham and his father was a black man from Kenya. Stanley, of course is strange name for a girl. This name was given by her father, who was also called Stanley, because he had expected a son rather than a daughter. Obama’s mother naturally didn’t want to be called ‘Stanley’ and used the name Ann instead.
Ann’s parents were liberals and liked to live an adventurous life. They were against any form of racism and their daughter Ann had similar views. The Dunham family travelled a lot and lived in a number of states in the United States, and when they moved to Hawaii, and Ann started studying at the University of Hawaii, she met a man from Kenya called Barack Hussein Obama. They married but their parents were unhappy. Ann’s parents were worried that the couple would face problems because American society would not welcome them easily as an interracial couple and Barack’s father said he “didn’t want the see the Obama blood sullied by a white woman”. Barack, who was a Muslim, also had two other wives in Kenya, which Ann and her parents did not particularly like. Ann, at the age of 18, gave birth to a boy who was named after his father. Barack senior wanted to take Ann and their son to Kenya and live there when he had finished his studies but Ann disagreed because she didn’t believe she and her son would be safe there, and so she ultimately divorced and took Barack junior to stay with Ann and her parents. Barack senior then left for Kenya and Barack junior would not see very much of his father as he grew up.
Ann later met and married another man at university, Lolo Soetoro, who was an Indonesian. They later moved to Indonesia and Barack, who was 6 then, went to at a Catholic school and his mother gave birth to his half-sister, Maya. Three years later, Barack went to a government school, and since his step-father was a Muslim, Barack had to learn about Qur’an but Barack did not seem very interested. He also had to learn the Indonesian language, which he did to a certain level. Ann, however, was worried about Barack’s education so she sent him to live with her parents in Hawaii. Also, she later separated from her second husband and took her daughter Maya with her to Hawaii. She didn’t stay in Hawaii for a long time but went back to Indonesia with Maya to do field work in anthropology. Barack didn’t want to go back to Indonesia and asked his mother to let him stay in Hawaii with his grandparents, which she agreed to.
Being half black and half white, Barack was still trying to figure out his identity. He had grown up in white liberal environment but to most Americans he was thought of as being black. As he grew older he got accustomed to this label and thought of himself as black. When he went to college in Los Angeles, he joined the Black Students Association where he began to get involved in political issues and helping people. He later moved to New York City and studied at Columbia University. He did well there and after graduating got a job as a research assistant in a company that published newsletters that gave advice to companies that did business in foreign countries. Barack, however, was more interested in doing community work and left this well-paying job to work as a community organizer in Chicago. He worked in Chicago’s South Side, which was predominantly black, and had some success in making some improvements but he realized that it was in politics that more significant changes could be made. To do that he first had to know the law so he applied to and was accepted to Harvard Law School. He did well there and after graduating and got a position in law firm in Chicago. It was there that he met and later married Michelle. After working as a lawyer, he entered politics and won a seat the state senate in Illinois as a representative. He later ran for Senator of Illinois and won and became Senator Obama in 2005. In 2006 he started thinking of trying to run for President and two years later succeed in winning the Presidential election in 2008.