Section 2 - Aftermath
President Barack Obama
President of the United States
- Name: Barack Hussein Obama II
- Nationality: United States of America
- Political Affiliation: Democratic party
- Education: JD, Harvard Law School
- DOB: 8/4/1961, Honolulu, Hawaii
- DOD: -
- Known Parahuman Abilities: Barack Obama has a relatively minor Talent of unnatural empathy. Whether speaking to someone one-on-one or in the midst of a crowd, he has the uncanny ability to know exactly what others are feeling and how to present himself to maximize or minimize those feelings. He is commonly criticized by Republicans as being “manipulative” and it is a testament to the subtle power of his Talent that he won the election nonetheless.
History: Barack Obama was born at the Kapi’olani Medical Center for Women & Children in Honolulu, Hawaii, United States, to Stanley Ann Dunham, an American of mainly English descent from Wichita, Kansas, and Barack Obama, Sr., a Luo from Nyang’oma Kogelo, Nyanza Province, Kenya. Obama’s parents met in 1960 in a Russian language class at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, where his father was a foreign student on scholarship. The couple married on February 2, 1961, and Barack was born later that year. His parents separated when he was two years old and they divorced in 1964. Obama’s father returned to Kenya and saw his son only once more before dying in an automobile accident in 1982.
After her divorce, Dunham married Indonesian student Lolo Soetoro, who was attending college in Hawaii. When Suharto, a military leader in Soetoro’s home country, came to power in 1967, all Indonesian students studying abroad were recalled and the family moved to the island nation. From ages six to ten, Obama attended local schools in Jakarta, including Besuki Public School and St. Francis of Assisi School.
In 1971, he returned to Honolulu to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Armour Dunham, and attended Punahou School, a private college preparatory school, from the fifth grade until his graduation from high school in 1979.
Obama’s mother returned to Hawaii in 1972 and remained there until 1977, when she relocated to Indonesia to work as an anthropological field worker. She finally returned to Hawaii in 1994 and lived there for one year before dying of ovarian cancer.
Reflecting later on his formative years in Honolulu, Obama wrote: “The opportunity that Hawaii offered—to experience a variety of cultures in a climate of mutual respect—became an integral part of my world view, and a basis for the values that I hold most dear.”
Obama claims not to have noticed when his Talent first manifested itself. Indeed, it may well have happened in childhood but was never noticed until he moved to Chicago, where he was hired as director of the Developing Communities Project (DCP), a church-based community organization originally comprising eight Catholic parishes in Greater Roseland (Roseland, West Pullman and Riverdale) on Chicago’s far South Side. During his three years as the DCP’s director, its staff grew from one to thirteen and its annual budget grew from $70,000 to $400,000. He helped set up a job training program, a college preparatory tutoring program, and a tenants’ rights organization in Altgeld Gardens. One of the tenants in Altgeld Gardens was an elderly African-American veteran of Talent Operation Group 127 in World War II once known as “Slapjack.” The old, nearly destitute, mostly forgotten war hero saw the young Obama at a citizen’s meeting and immediately noticed the Talent aura.
Obama took the news in stride. It had apparently never occurred to him that his uncanny, intuitive ability to “read” people around him and conform to their expectations was anything other than natural ability.
His political career is a matter of public record. Despite the immediate suspicion that knowledge of his Talent engendered, he became a fast-rising star in the Democratic party. When Yama’s apocalypse destroyed most of the major cities on the eastern seaboard as well as Los Angeles, the urban-centered Democratic party took a serious blow. The conservative “States Rights” backlash that swept the United States in response to perceived incompetence and cowardice on the part of the Federal government temporarily stymied Obama’s ambitions.
Despite these serious setbacks, however, and amidst the chaos of reconstruction, Obama handily won the Democratic nomination with no serious competitors. His victory over veteran Arizona Senator John McCain, however, was widely considered a million-to-one impossibility. The entire nation was shellshocked by nuclear attack, rallying around a party traditionally seen as strong in war. Jingoism was even higher than after the attacks on 9/11/01. Somehow, through natural skill and his Talent abilities, an inexperienced Democrat managed to convince hostile crowd after hostile crowd that the way out was to look forward not backward.
Despite these successes, President Obama has a daunting task, to reforge a strong nation out of a rapidly splintering group of increasingly independent states.