Quotes from Barack Obama

Barack Obama

This pleased Onyango, for to him knowledge was the source of all the white man's power, and he wanted to make sure that his son was as educated as any white man.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I'm so overexposed, I'm making Paris Hilton look like a recluse.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Over the last fifteen months we've traveled to every corner of the United States. I've now been to fifty-seven states. I think, one left to go.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

At the end of the day, the circumstances of your life-- what you look like,where you come from, how much money you have, what you've got going on at home--none of that is an excuse... where you are right now doesn't have to determine where you'll end up. No ones written your destiny for you, because here in America, you write you own destiny.You make your own future.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break; the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

all the education and good intentions in the world couldn’t help plug up the holes in the universe or give you the power to change its blind, mindless course.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

But you don’t choose the time. The time chooses you. Either you seize what may turn out to be the only chance you have, or you decide you’re willing to live with the knowledge that the chance has passed you by.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

When things are bad,” Axe said, walking next to me as we left the December meeting, “no one cares that ‘things could have been worse.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

And so the world watches America—the only great power in history made up of people from every corner of the planet, comprising every race and faith and cultural practice—to see if our experiment in democracy can work. To see if we can do what no other nation has ever done. To see if we can actually live up to the meaning of our creed.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West - know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

You could see a man talking to himself as just plain crazy, or read about the criminal on the front page of the daily paper and ponder the corruption of the human heart, without having to think about whether the criminal or lunatic said something about your own fate.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The boarded-up homes, the decaying storefronts, the aging church rolls, kids from unknown families who swaggered down the streets - loud congregations of teenage boys, teenage girls feeding potato chips to crying toddlers, the discarded wrappers tumbling down the block - all of it whispered painful truths.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I'm asking you to believe. Not just in my ability to bring about real change in Washington . . . I'm asking you to believe in yours." Keeping faith with those who serve must always be a core American value and a cornerstone of American patriotism. Because America's commitment to its servicemen and women begins at enlistment, and it must never end.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

And it's safe to assume that those in power would think longer and harder about launching a war if they envisioned their own sons and daughters in harm's way.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Reading is important. If you know how to read then the whole world opens up to you

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The public school system is not about educating black children. Never has been. Inner-city schools are about social control. Period. They’re operated as holding pens—miniature jails, really. It’s only when black children start breaking out of their pens and bothering white people that society even pays any attention to the issue of whether these children are being educated.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It was as if he had come to mistrust words somehow. Words, and the sentiments words carried.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

To be black was to be the beneficiary of a great inheritance, a special destiny, glorious burdens that only we were strong enough to bear.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Better to be strong,' he [Lolo] said...'if you can't be strong, be clever and make peace with someone who's strong. But always better to be strong yourself.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart - not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I’d met my share of highly credentialed, high-IQ morons

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

If the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists – to protect them and to promote their common welfare – all else is lost.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Winter came and the city [Chicago] turned monochrome -- black trees against gray sky above white earth. Night now fell in midafternoon, especially when the snowstorms rolled in, boundless prairie storms that set the sky close to the ground, the city lights reflected against the clouds

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

there was the unsettling fact that, despite whatever my mother might claim, the bullies, cheats, and self-promoters seemed to be doing quite well, while those she considered good and decent people seemed to get screwed an awful lot.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

There's nobody to guide through the process of becoming a man... to explain to them the meaning of manhood. And that's a recipe for disaster.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It [is] that courage that Africa most desperately needs.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

America is big enough to accommodate all their dreams.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It's not surprising, then, they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Where there is no experience the wise man is silent.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Either grab a drink and sit down with us or get the fuck out of here.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

make away out of no way

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

A nation ringed by walls will only imprison itself.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballot; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountain top and pointed the way to the Promised Land. Yes we can!

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

And that, I suppose, is what I'd been trying to tell my mother that day: that her faith in justice and rationality was misplaced, that we couldn't overcome after all, that all the education and good intentions in the world couldn't help you plug up the holes in the universe or give you the power to change its blind, mindless course.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

This shit would be really interesting if we weren't in the middle of it.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The emotions between the races could never be pure; even love was tarnished by the desire to find in the other some element that was missing in ourselves. Whether we sought out our demons or salvation, the other race would always remain just that: menacing, alien, and apart.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I experienced failure and learned to buck up so I could rally those who’d put their trust in me. I suffered rejections and insults often enough to stop fearing them. In other words, I grew up—and got my sense of humor back.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The best anti-poverty program is a world-class education.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I've got daughters. Nine years old and six years old. First of all, I'm gonna teach them about values and morals. But if they make a mistake, I don't want them PUNISHED with a baby.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The truth is, I’ve never been a big believer in destiny. I worry that it encourages resignation in the down-and-out and complacency among the powerful.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

To be known. To be heard. To have one’s unique identity recognized and seen as worthy. It was a universal human desire, I thought, as true for nations and peoples as it was for individuals.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The thing about getting old, Bar,” Toot had told me, “is that you’re the same person inside.” I remember her eyes studying me through her thick bifocals, as if to make sure I was paying attention. “You’re trapped in this doggone contraption that starts falling apart. But it’s still you. You understand?” I did now.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

We may come from different places and have different stories, but we share common hopes, and one very American dream.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Each path to knowledge involves different rules and these rules are not interchangeable.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

My little girls can break my heart. They can make me cry just looking at them eating their string beans.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I confess to wincing every so often at a poorly chosen word, a mangled sentence, an expression of emotion that seems indulgent or overly practiced. I have the urge to cut the book by fifty pages or so, possessed as I am with a keener appreciation for brevity.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

What Washington Needs is Adult Supervision.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

You know, sometimes I'll go to an 8th-grade graduation and there's all that pomp and circumstance and gowns and flowers. And I think to myself, it's just 8th grade ... An 8th-grade education doesn't cut it today. Let's give them a handshake and tell them to get their butts back in the library!

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

There is no excuse for not trying.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Each of us deserves the freedom to pursue our own version of happiness. No one deserves to be bullied.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

To all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces, to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of the world, our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

At the moment that we persuade a child, any child, to cross that threshold, that magic threshold into a library, we change their lives forever, for the better

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I wish the country had fewer lawyers and more engineers.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

To those Americans whose support I have yet to earn, I may not have won your vote tonight, but I hear your voices. I need your help. And I will be your president, too.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Cynicism is a sorry kind of wisdom.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

It's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

But you see, a rich country like America can perhaps afford to be stupid.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I think perhaps education doesn’t do us much good unless it is mixed with sweat.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Change is never easy, but always possible.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I wonder, sometimes, whether men and women in fact are capable of learning from history--whether we progress from one stage to the next in an upward course or whether we just ride the cycles of boom and bust, war and peace, ascent and decline.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Hope -- Hope in the face of difficulty. Hope in the face of uncertainty. The audacity of hope! In the end, that is God’s greatest gift to us...A belief in things not seen. A belief that there are better days ahead.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

We will outstretch the hand if you unclench your fist.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Someone once said that every man is trying to live up to his father's expectations or make up for their father's mistakes....

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

All too rarely do I hear people asking just what it is that we've done to make so many children's hearts so hard, or what collectively we might do to right their moral compass - what values we must live by.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

We may not be able to stop evil in the world, but how we treat one another is entirely up to us.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

You might be locked in a world not of your own making, her eyes said, but you still have a claim on how it is shaped. You still have responsibilities.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

A nation that can't control its energy sources can't control its future.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Where you are right now doesn't have to determine where you'll end up

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

A lot of shelter dogs are mutts like me.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Change we need

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

My identity might begin with the fact of my race, but it didn't, couldn't end there. At least that's what I would choose to believe.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Enthusiasm makes up for a host of deficiencies.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our Democracy; Tonight is your answer.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

No one is pro-abortion.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

While we breathe, we will hope.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

You can put lipstick on a pig. It's still a pig.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Our stories may be singular, but our destination is shared.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I have always believed that hope is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us so long as we have the courage to keep reaching, to keep working, to keep fighting.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The worst thing that colonialism did was to cloud our view of our past.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Why can't I just eat my waffle?

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Making your mark on the world is hard. If it were easy, everybody would do it. But it's not. It takes patience, it takes commitment, and it comes with plenty of failure along the way. The real test is not whether you avoid this failure, because you won't. it's whether you let it harden or shame you into inaction, or whether you learn from it; whether you choose to persevere.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

it’s important to make sure that we’re talking with each other in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. And it will leave you unfulfilled.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

No, you can't deny women their basic rights and pretend it's about your 'religious freedom'. If you don't like birth control, don't use it. Religious freedom doesn't mean you can force others to live by your own beliefs.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

What I’ve realized is that life doesn’t count for much unless you’re willing to do your small part to leave our children — all of our children — a better world. Any fool can have a child. That doesn’t make you a father. It’s the courage to raise a child that makes you a father.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I believe in evolution, scientific inquiry, and global warming; I believe in free speech, whether politically correct or politically incorrect, and I am suspicious of using government to impose anybody's religious beliefs -including my own- on nonbelievers.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

We don't ask you to believe in our ability to bring change, rather, we ask you to believe in yours.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

One voice can change a room, and if one voice can change a room, then it can change a city, and if it can change a city, it can change a state, and if it change a state, it can change a nation, and if it can change a nation, it can change the world. Your voice can change the world.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

There's not a liberal America and a conservative America - there's the United States of America.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

I'm inspired by the people I meet in my travels--hearing their stories, seeing the hardships they overcome, their fundamental optimism and decency. I'm inspired by the love people have for their children. And I'm inspired by my own children, how full they make my heart. They make me want to work to make the world a little bit better. And they make me want to be a better man.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

In the face of impossible odds, people who love this country can change it.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

In the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

We are the change we have been waiting for.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Yes We Can!

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

A change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.

— Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

— Barack Obama