Transcript of Obama’s Speech

for one thing – Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old.  

She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn’t vote for two reasons – because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin. 

And tonight, I think about all that she’s seen throughout her century in America – the heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can’t, and the people who pressed on with that American creed:  Yes we can.  

At a time when women’s voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot.  Yes we can.  

When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs and a new sense of common purpose.  Yes we can. 

When the bombs fell on our harbor and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved.  Yes we can.  

She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that “We Shall Overcome.”  Yes we can.  

A man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in Berlin, a world was connected by our own science and imagination.  And this year, in this election, she touched her finger to a screen, and cast her vote, because after 106 years in America, through the best of times and the darkest of hours, she knows how America can change.  Yes we can.  

America, we have come so far.  We have seen so much.  But there is so much more to do.  So tonight, let us ask ourselves – if our children should live to see the next century; if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change will they see?  What progress will we have made?  

This is our chance to answer that call.  This is our moment.  This is our time – to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth – that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can’t, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people: 

Yes We Can.  Thank you, God bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America. 

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  • Lynette D. White

    I’m still in shock. I’m still in awe. I can’t sleep. I don’t want to wake up for this dream. I feel like America was reborn today. I finally feel american.

    Thank you and god bless us all.

  • Jeffrey Jenkins

    Matthew 20:16, So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.

    Deuteronomy 11

    8 Therefore shall ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it

    9 And that ye may prolong your days in the land, which the LORD sware unto your fathers to give unto them and to their seed, a land that floweth with milk and honey.

    10 For the land, whither thou goest in to possess it, is not as the land of Egypt, from whence ye came out, where thou sowedst thy seed, and wateredst it with thy foot, as a garden of herbs:

    11 But the land, whither ye go to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinketh water of the rain of heaven:

    12 A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year.

    Jeffrey Jenkins

  • Alfred Howard, Jr

    I think it was an excellent unifying and sensitive speeech
    He spoke confidence and inspiration that America can get
    better and is getting better inspite of how bad it is.
    Bad times won’t last forever. We can change the future.
    Yes we can!.

  • http://fredilynn3116.livejournal.com/344.html Karoline Zachry

    You’ll haven’t intended to do thus, however I suppose you have managed to precise the way of thinking that a lot of folks are in. The sense of wanting to help, however not knowing how or where, is one thing a lot people are going through.

  • AC Johnson

    Profound and real. I am glad that such a man of discipline, character, and resolve will unite the people of America to overcome some of the greatest challenges we have seen in our lifetimes. His focus in this speech spoke to the way I believe Obama will lead this country. It is a beautiful day in America – especially in Black America. Congratulations!