What’s all this about? I have a story published in Malamalama, the University of Hawaii biennial magazine, about Stanley Ann Dunham, President-Elect Barack Obama’s mother.
Ann was a student at the University of Hawaii. It’s where she met Obama’s father, Barack Obama, Sr., the first African student enrolled at UH. The story is about a woman who questioned authority, crossed cultural barriers, sought to improve working conditions in third-world countries, in particular in Indonesia and other Asian areas, and helped by establishing microfinancing for the crafts men and women of these areas.
In her eyes, all were equal. Through her eyes, both “Barry” and his little sister Maya, developed a broad view of the world. The skills of a simple villager hammering out a metal puppet or dyeing a gorgeous batik would be compared by Ann to the wisest of government officials. She saw the value that a peasant brought into the world and demanded that those in high places appreciate that value.
And now we have her son as our next President of the United States. Someone who spent time overseas absorbing different cultures, someone who attended the prestigious Punahou School on scholarship, while staying with his grands. Someone who has as often been on the outside as he has been on the inside. Someone with empathy. His Mama must be proud. We in Hawaii most certainly are.
I am honored for the opportunity to have written this story. Anyone would be blessed to know Ann’s story. You can find it here.