The Black President No Longer

Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson says it's "simply amazing" that we're talking about President Obama's legacy, not his race.

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President Barack Obama delivering his inaugural speech (Alex Wong/Getty Images News)

Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson says it's "simply amazing" that we're talking about President Obama's legacy, not his race.

President Barack Hussein Obama's second inauguration was every bit as historic as his first -- not because it said so much about the nation's long, bitter, unfinished struggle with issues of race, as was the case four years ago, but because it said so little about the subject.

Reflect for a moment: A black man stood on the Capitol steps and took the oath of office as president of the United States. For the second time. Meaning that not only did voters elect him once -- which could be a fluke, a blip, an aberration, a cosmic accident -- but then turned around and did it again.

Leading up to Monday's pageant of democracy -- perhaps the one occasion when the phrase "pageant of democracy" can be used without irony -- commentary focused on prospects for Obama's second term.

Would there be more gridlock and paralysis? Would Obama adopt a more conciliatory tone toward the Republican leadership in the House, or would he press the advantage he won at the polls in November? Would he make good on his promise of an all-out effort to pass new gun-control laws, even at the risk of making some fellow Democrats politically vulnerable? How would he approach immigration, entitlements, economic growth, the long-term debt? 

Read Eugene Robinson's entire piece at the Washington Post.

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