My grandson looks like Barack Obama

We're a multiracial society and should stop listening to reactionary voices

OPINION He really does. I was sitting and reading (that's what I do most of the time) and I came across a picture supplied by Obama's half-sister (who is half-Indonesian) of their mom and Barack at around two years of age. I was struck by the similarities between young Barack (taken some 44 years ago) and my grandson, Wesley, who is two and multi-racial — the new zeitgeist.

Kamala Harris is multiracial. Elaine Santore is multiracial. So is my granddaughter, Tandiwe. And Tiger Woods. And Derek Jeter. It shouldn't be a big deal anymore.

But it is.

I want my multiracial grandkids to spend the next eight years of their development thinking that having a black President of the United States is the most natural thing in the world. I want my white grandson to think the same thing. I want America to think it too.

Obama's mom reminds me so much of my own daughter. Barack's mom joined United Nations efforts. My daughter joined the Peace Corps. Neither ever worked anything but a life of service to America and the needy people of the world (my daughter went from Peace Corps to America Corps and then back to Peace Corps.

I thought these things as I hung out on my balcony (OK, it's a Tenderloin fire escape) and watched the St. Patrick's Day parade go under my perch. The first ranks had the cops and an Asian woman at the head. The black cops walking with her seemed normal now, because my grandkids are black and Irish. I read a book once that said that 25 percent of American black folks have American Indian blood in them.

In other words, we're a multiracial society and should stop listening to the reactionary voices like Hillary Clinton and her supporters who think that any person of color who has a top job or candidacy is there due to some racial quota.

"I've been to the jungles and the lowlands beneath / where tigers question jaguars about their teeth. / Never forget the moral that I trace. / This world is a dangerous place."

Bertolt Brecht

One thing that most of the people of the third world agree upon is that you can't trust white men. That can be something of a hindrance when you're trying to negotiate something. That's why Colin Powell and Kofi Annan get much better receptions in the world's capitals. Imagine going from sending the likes of Dick Cheney to talk to the Iraqis to having Barack Obama represent you.

I'm not trying to be trite here, but let's face it — most of the world is a lot more likely to have someone in their family who looks like Barack Obama than are most Americans. That counts for a lot.

So let's be sensible and elect a president who looks like my grandson. It works for me.

h. Brown

h. Brown is a 62 year-old keeper of, an eclectic site featuring a half-dozen City Hall denizens. h is a former sailor, firefighter, teacher, nightclub owner, and a hard-living satirical muckraker. He also writes the Court Jester column for, where an earlier version of this column appeared.