Jan. 20, 2009
Jammie Kirlew spent the better part of the last 18 months waiting for Inauguration Day. He joined the Students for Barack Obama organization on campus, knocked on doors and helped register voters for the 44th President of the United States. That is why he will be glued to his television and filled with enormous pride during Barack Obama's inauguration. Kirlew reflected on Barack Obama and why he got involved in his campaign in a recent interview with the Bloomington Herald-Times:
What drew you to President Obama and why did you join the campaign?
"His eloquence at pep rallies, his speeches and his ideas. They (his ideas) are practical, and I think they will work. He definitely has passion in everything he says, and he really believes he can get these things done. That's why I joined the Students for Barack Obama and did everything I could to help the campaign."
What does 2009 Inauguration Day mean to you?
"This is a very special moment in history. President Obama is a great role model. We don't have a numerous amount of African-American role models, especially for younger students in school right now. They look up to an athlete or music artist, but he is the President of the United States. That is so important and so powerful. It is another example that anything is possible whether you are African-American, Hispanic, Asian, any minority. This should open eyes for a lot of people that they don't have to put limits on their dreams or goals."
How did you get involved in politics?
"I started volunteering during the primaries. I didn't necessarily get drawn to President Obama at the beginning, but more to the actual election process. You see the housing crisis, the energy situation, gasoline constantly rising, and you begin to wonder why everything is happening. I thought it was an important time for myself and all students to voice their opinions on important topics."