After several years of failed attempts to honor the President’s name in Hawaii, the only thing named after Obama in his home state is a $4 shaved ice treat – the ‘Snowbama.’
This is why analysts at Washington Post began recently wonder whether the President was snubbed on purpose or he is just too young to have his name on something more official.
Though other states honored their most prominent native sons by naming rivers, buildings, and streets after them, in Hawaii nothing bears the name of Barack Obama. In recent years there were some attempts to immortalize the name of the nation’s first black President but none of them was serious.
Stanley Chang a member of the Honolulu City Council said he had tried seven times to put the President’s name on something within the city, but all efforts were in vain. Additionally, some lawmakers made similar attempts ever since 2009 but with no luck. For instance, there were plans to name after the President two schools, a beach, and a couple of state holidays. Even the apartment where Obama once lived couldn’t be named after him.
But Hawaiians do have something that honors the President – a shaved ice treat served by Island Snow, a location the President often visits during his annual family vacation. The $4 ‘Snowbama’ treat is a mix of four flavors: guava, cherry, lime and lemon, which the President was seen eating on Dec. 27 during his annual outing with his family and friends.
Nevertheless, other states managed to honor the name of Obama. For instance, Florida named a highway and a boulevard after the President’s name. On the other hand, other Presidents had better luck. For instance about 109 buildings, settings, and roads were named after Ronald Reagan. Even a national airport now bears the name of the former President.
But in Obama’s case there may be at least two obstacles in having his name immortalized. First, Hawaiian people are very found of their surroundings’ names because they believe that anything is imbued with spirit and feeling.
Second, Barack Obama is too young and alive by official standards to have his name honored. Past presidents had their names on things about half a century after their deaths.
Furthermore, some Hawaii residents and officials are not too eager to honor Obama because of some (non-) political issues. Some have criticized him for failing to properly handle the national security, others are displeased that the President didn’t open the presidential library in his home state, while others are simply upset that Obama doesn’t at least wear an Aloha T-shirt during his unofficial visits.
Image Source: Wikimedia
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