Amazing grace, indeed! A video of United States President Barack Obama singing the classic Christian song “Amazing Grace” went viral on the Internet on June 26, 2015, the same day the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. The president’s song title as the trending term on Twitter by 8PM EST. A link to the president singing “Amazing Grace” was made available on the New York Times website as well as many other mainstream media outlets. But the president’s song was not one of faith in celebration. He was actually speaking at the funeral for the pastor recently slain by a White Supremacist in Charleston, SC.
The New York Times shared, “The president broke into the spiritual after delivering the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, the slain South Carolina state senator and former pastor of Emanuel A.M.E. Church.” The tragedy has left the nation reeling from the impact of knowing that a white young person would engage in such a grossly violent act of terrorism.
Obama’s song was a powerful rendition according to ABC news. Noting that most objective journalists strive not to be biased, having them endorse the tune was a refreshing and seemingly symbolic note of network patriotism.
As race relations impact all people (regardless of political affiliation), Obama choosing to sing a traditional melody that is known by most Americans but held no particular political bent. The source went on to say:
President Obama delivered one of the most emotional moments of his presidency when he led a crowd of 5,500 people in singing “Amazing Grace” at the funeral services today of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney.
Towards the end of a nearly 40-minute eulogy for Pinckney, the president spoke about the grace the slain pastor embodied and started repeating the words of the famous gospel hymn.
“If we can find that grace, anything is possible. If we can tap that grace, everything can change. Amazing grace. Amazing grace,” he said.
Even thought the president might not have a future career as a pop music singer, he’s still well known for being an engaging motivational speaker. ABC further noted, “The moment sparked immediate response on Twitter, with some comparing the president to a pastor.”
With condolences still pouring in to residents of the Charleston county area of South Carolina, civil rights advocates as well as peace-loving people (who believe that all men and women truly are created as equals regardless of things like skin color, ethnic culture, political affiliations, sexual orientation, or gender) have been leaving positive comments in support of the president as well as to the friends and family members of the slain church-goers in the holy city.
On a day where confederate flags are starting to come down around the country while rainbow flags are going up, somehow Obama singing a tune that offers grace and ease to weary spirits seemed in more than one way to be not only politically correct but somehow jazz-hands appropriate.
What do you think of the President’s eulogy and song rendition? Let other readers know your thoughts in the comments section below.