President Barack Obama is one of the youngest president’s in our nation’s history, as he took office at the age of just forty six. He is the country’s first African American president, and he faced many challenges due to political opposition to his progressive viewpoints. He overcame some opposition, but others we will continue to face as a nation. Take a look back at the greatest photos of President Barack Obama over his eight years in office, from the poignant to the silly. We will miss you President Obama!
Hey Girl What’ya Doin’?
This is one of President Obama’s most humorous snapshots. Sure, he was probably half way through an arm or facial movement but the photo remains the same. Due to security measures Obama, until recently, did not have a phone with “smart” capabilities, like most of the country. He once told Jimmy Fallon about his clunky Blackberry.
Obama recounted what he was told when he received the Blackberry: “this is a great phone, state of the art, but it doesn’t take pictures, you can’t text, the phone doesn’t work, you can’t play your music on it.” He said he sees his two daughters and wife active with texting and various social apps like Snapchat, which he cannot take part in. Do you think we’ll see the former president joining Instagram after he officially leaves office?
Tears of Pain
This is a beautiful photograph, albeit a painful one to look at. This photo was taken during the press conference President Obama held after the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012, where a mentally ill white 20-year-old man massacred 20 children between the ages of six and seven.
It was a horrific time for the nation. Obama’s administration has since attempted to bring new legislation that would make it more difficult for mentally ill people to get their hands on firearms, yet it has been continuously been opposed by Republicans and groups like the NRA. Let’s hope the future will be one without such tremendous tragedies.
Barack and Hillary Hug It Out
Barack Obama made an appearance at the Democratic National Convention to throw his support behind 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Typically, acting presidents do not speak out as openly as Obama did for Hillary, but the 2016 election was truly a mind-boggling event.
Although the two candidates ran against one another in the past, they clearly put their differences aside as Obama appointed Hillary as Secretary of State. This beautiful moment was captured at the DNC, as President Obama and a large majority of the country thought Hillary would become the 45th president and first woman president of the United States.
Down To Their Level
You can tell a lot by the way a man treats children, and President Obama definitely has a knack for connecting with the little ones. There are so many lovely photos of Obama and children to choose from throughout his presidency. As mentioned earlier, he truly cares about the well-being of children and that is a beautiful thing.
He recently commented on the ongoing conflict in Syria, saying, “In Syria, the suffering in the civil war has been heartbreaking. To see a nation shattered and hundreds of thousands killed, and millions driven from their homes. It is gut-wrenching. As a father, I look at Syria’s children and I see my own.” We should only be so lucky that our future leaders will demonstrate the same kind of compassion towards the children of our nation and the world at large.
Michelle and Barack have continuously shown mutual love and respect for one another throughout Obama’s tenure in office. These two are truly an outward example of how all of us should desire our marriages to be. Michelle has given others advice on what to look for in their own love lives.
She said, “Cute’s good. But cute only lasts for so long, and then it’s, ‘Who are you as a person?’ Don’t look at the bankbook or the title. Look at the heart. Look at the soul. When you’re dating a man, you should always feel good. … You shouldn’t be in a relationship with somebody who doesn’t make you completely happy and make you feel whole.” Great advice from a wise woman!
Obama has two daughters, Sasha and Malia, who have grown up during their time in the White House. Obama even spoke with an ABC radio station about what it would be like when his daughters start dating.
He said, “Oh, that happened. The truth is, I’m pretty relaxed about it for two reasons. One is Michelle [Obama] — she’s such a great example of how she carries herself, her self-esteem, not depending on boys to validate how you look or not letting yourself be judged by anything other than your character and intelligence. Hopefully I’ve been a good example in terms of how I show respect to my wife.” He also mentioned his second reason and said, “They have Secret Service.” I’m sure all dads would love to have secret service when their little girls start to date!
Barack and Joe: Bromance
Barack Obama and Joe Biden are more than just president and vice president, they seem to have a true and deep friendship with one another. In this photo, the two are seen laughing as they watched the U.S. Senior Men’s National Team and Brazil during a pre-Olympic exhibition basketball game on July 16, 2012 in Washington.
Obama even gave the heart-wrenching eulogy at Biden’s son Beau’s funeral, with Obama calling Joe “his brother” and following with a tight hug for his close friend. The two have even poked fun at their friendship appearing in videos where they make friendship bracelets for one another. Recently, their legendary friendship has hit social media in the form of countless Biden memes around various platforms.
Obama and His First Lady
The way Obama looks at and speak of his wife, Michelle, is something we can all aspire to have in our own relationships. In this photo we are given a glimpse of what is true for many relationships, and that is the man turns to his counterpart for strength and advice.
The respect Obama has for his wife is truly a beautiful thing. Obama even joked on Ellen about how to have a marriage with no arguing. He said, “Ya know, after about 15 years I finally figured out that she’s always right. So then surprising we just stopped fighting after that.” Sounds like advice that every man could take, no matter what his political affiliation is!
At his last White House Correspondents Dinner, Obama went the usual route and told the expected jokes. But as this was his last dinner ever, he ended with “Obama out”, and a mic drop. It was a pretty hilarious moment. In 2015, Obama had comedian Keegan Michael Key as his “anger translator” saying all the things Obama really wanted to say, which was also a pretty funny moment.
You can still find both on YouTube! Many have also criticized the White House Correspondents Dinner because it shows the closeness between the government and the press, which could lead to such horrifying things like propaganda.
Obama Has A Beer
Is there really any other moment that could signify what a normal guy Obama is, then sharing a Guinness with his wife and friends? It’s no secret that the president enjoys a refreshing brewski now and again. If you check out the latest Netflix film Barry, you’ll see the character down quite a few!
The film follows Barack Obama’s early pre-presidential life as a student in law school and his relationships including a girlfriend and his mother. Regardless of whether it’s fictionalized version or not, it’s quite an interesting look at Obama’s supposed early life. It’s notable how many cultures Obama was exposed to as a young man, which could only serve to help him have a diplomatic look at the world at large.
Obama Is Santa?!
Just in time for the Christmas season, here is a photo of Obama playing Santa Claus at the Marine’s Annual Toys for Tots campaign. According to Hello! Magazine, he entered the room and introduced himself as “the big elf”, saying “ho, ho, ho!”
Barack and Michelle stopped by the Washington military base, Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling and delivered about 1,000 toys. Usually Michelle is the one who attends the event but given it’s his last few months in office, Obama joined as well. It’s always wonderful to see our President get hands on for a great cause like a toy drive for needy children!
Have you ever seen a photo of Obama looking more relaxed then how he looks here all decked out in his Nike gear? It looks as though he just finished up playing one of his favorite sports – basketball!
He even has a Gatorade in hand, as he walks back to what is presumably his motorcade. Obama has said it’s impossible to sneak off in private! Surely, that is something he will like to do again when his term ends in January 2017. Can you imagine what it must be like to have someone watch your every move, or not to even to be able to run a simple errand like going to the store to buy groceries?
“We Have The Same Hair”
This super famous photo was taken when family of a departing staff member named Carlton Philadelphia was leaving a stint on the National Security Council. The family was meeting the president for a photo and both of Mr. Philadelphia’s sons had a question for the President. The younger boy is named Jacob.
He asked the President, “I want to know if my hair is just like yours.” Apparently,he spoke so softly that the president asked him to repeat himself. When he did, Obama replied, “Why don’t you touch it and see for yourself?” And he bent at the waist, Jacob hesitated. Obama encouraged him, “Touch it, dude!” Obama then asked Jacob, “So, what do you think?” Jacob replied, “Yes, it does feel the same,” Jacob said. This beautiful moment highlight how important it has been to have our first African American president in office, to ensure that other young men of color might rise to the same heights.
Obama and the Pope-Mobile
In another from the baby files, here is Obama greeting a baby dressed like the Pope. The Obamas have hosted yearly Halloween celebrations on the White House lawn since taking office. In 2015, Obama was photographed cracking up at the baby Pope. Can you blame him?
The baby’s dad told Buzzfeed, “I was keeping my eye on Baby Pope to make sure that she didn’t spit-up on her vestments, hurl her mitre to the ground, or get freaked out by the fairly elaborate decorations at the White House. It was touch-and-go.” That costume is truly adorable and hilarious! Obama even declared that “she won top prize!”
Obama’s sense of humor will be truly a memorable part of his legacy. He has even showcased it in late night shows like “Slow Jammin’ The News” with Jimmy Fallon and videos on Buzzfeed encouraging people to vote or sign up for healthcare. The president has also already seen films made of him, and likely we are to see even more in the future.
Do you think we’ll see more of the president in the realm of show business? Hey, he could be like a reverse Ronald Reagan! Oddly, there have been a lot more actors who became Republican politicians than Democrats. Examples include Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sonny Bono, and of course Reagan.
This photo was taken when Obama met up with television host and chef Anthony Bourdain in Vietnam in 2016 for the CNN show Parts Unknown. Typically, Bourdain travels around the world trying cuisine from around the world, and the more hole-in-the-wall place the better. During their meeting the two ate a meal of noodles that came to a whopping $6.
Bourdain also asked Obama, “Is ketchup on a hotdog ever acceptable?” Without hesitation, Obama answered, “no,” with a shake of his head and he took a swig of beer. Obama continued, “No, I’m serious. Well, it’s not acceptable past the age of eight!” Clearly, the President is more of mustard kind of guy!
Obama was raised primarily by his mother and grandparents. In this photo, we see a young smiling Obama, his half-sister, his mother, and his grandfather. Obama has spoken at length about his upbringing and how it made him the man he is today.
Obama told ABC news, “I always see myself in them. I do know what it means to come of age uncertain about your place and not clear about what it means to become a man and not having as much guidance, despite the extraordinary love of my mom and my grandparents, and getting in trouble and making bad decisions. It’s useful for them to hear from somebody who’s come out on the other side of it that the challenges they are going through are not exceptional.”
Obama never looks happier than when he is surrounded by his family — his wife and two daughters — and this beautiful portrait is no exception. Obama wrote about his family in his book The Audacity of Hope. He described how they both inspired his politics and how they shape his hope for the future.
Obama wrote, “Empathy is at the heart of my moral code … a call to stand in somebody else’s shoes and see through their eyes. Like most of my values, I learned about empathy from my mother… He continued saying he was, “angry about policies that consistently favor the wealthy and powerful over average Americans, and insist[s] that government has an important role in opening up opportunity to all.” If only all politicians felt this way!
This photo is actually a photo still of a video Obama did for Buzzfeed, which was targeting people to sign up for Healthcare. The video is called “Things People Do and Don’t Talk About” and is poking fun at all things everyone does when no one is looking.
This is just yet another example of how down-to-earth Obama is, which is no doubt a product of his modest background. Even the fact that he is willing to participate in videos such as this really show the kind of guy he is! At least we can always look back on these moments!
This photo is really made complete by Obama’s facial expression, kind of a half-tired smirk, and a thumbs up sign! Obama recently sat down with presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin for Vanity Fair magazine. He spoke of what it’s like to hold the most powerful office in the United States, the obstacles he faced, and how he generally views the presidency.
Obama said, “Having had this office has given me this incredible perch from which to see how the world works. The power of the office is unique and it is a humbling privilege. With that power, however, also comes a whole host of institutional constraints. There are things I cannot say … not out of any political concerns, but out of prudential concerns of the office. There are institutional obligations I have to carry out that are important for a president of the United States to carry out, but may not always align with what I think would move the ball down the field on the issues that I care most deeply about.” President Obama has said that he plans to rely on his old community organizing background and work with the presidential library. Specifically he said he plans to work on “creating a platform for the next generation of young leaders across disciplines to work together.” A big thumbs-up to you, Obama!