Friday, October 10, 2008

Racism is Just Plain Ugly

The American presidential election has taken an ugly turn recently. Today, McCain was forced to tell some of his supporters that Obama is not a terrorist. When some of his supporters questioned Obama's character and patriotism, McCain was compelled to defend his opponent! He noted that Obama is a good citizen and family man, and certainly not a terrorist.

The video below tells the story about a parking lot owner who erected a sign saying that Obama supporters are not welcomed to park in his lot. Partway through the video, the claim is made that he is trying to inject a little "humor" into the election. This guy had better keep his day job, because comedy is not his forte. Near the end of the video, he comes much closer to revealing his true motivation: he claims that he is offended that Obama is running for president. Offended! Obama is not a perfect candidate, but he's certainly not offensive. He's an intelligent, articulate, accomplished human being. Americans are fortunate to have him participating in our political system. Guys like the idiot in the video below are offensive and embarrassing.

UPDATE: As I browsed the web this evening, I came across this letter that was sent to Obama supporters in Arlington County, Virginia (which is immediately east of Fairfax County):

The text reads:

Dearest Neighbor,

Please don’t take this the wrong way, but a friend has recommended that I reach out to you about a problem that you may be having but may not be aware of: Have you ever considered whether your ostentatious support for Senator Barack Obama is really a disguise that hides a deeply anchored form of racism towards Blac-Americans?

Racism comes in many forms, and there is a significant possibility that your sponsorship of Senator Obama is really an obsessive compulsion to prove to yourself, and to others, that you are not a racist. Have you looked within yourself and examined your motives?

Sure, we can turn it all into a joke, like some have: an Obama lawn-sign is the yuppy status-symbol du jour; a hip and shiny accessory, this season’s iPhone. “But dear, every Volvo in the Whole Foods parking lot has an Obama sticker on it!” – that’s yet another parody of White property-owning affluence as described by

Have you really considered why you are so fixated by Senator Obama? How important was the pigmentation of Obama’s skin in spurring your interest? Do you really believe that he, or anyone else for that matter, is more qualified for the presidency than Senator Hillary Clinton? C’mon, let’s be honest with ourselves; that’s the first step in the healing process.

Isn’t making a big deal of Obama’s skin color just another form of racism?

Unfortunately, Senator Obama and his team have approached this question in a very cynical way. Can anyone really brand former President Bill Clinton a racist? After all he had done for Black people? Well, the Obama campaign did. Can anyone accuse the Rev. Jesse Jackson of being a racist against Blacks? The Obama campaign almost did.

You should be absolutely certain that you are not being carried over to the voting booth upon a guilt trip. You should take this opportunity to look deeply within yourself and ask, “Why did I fall for Obama? Why am I after all that we have accomplished on racial issues, still feeling guilty? Am I an unconscious racist? Am I any better than those who pretend not to stare at an inter-racial couple?

I’m sorry to tell you that voting for Obama does not absolve you of racism, it may even confirm it. You may be besotted by Obama because he’s the least-black, half-Black politician out there. Did you catch yourself thinking that Obama is remarkably “clean” and “articulate” as Senator Joe Biden condescendingly said?

I beg you to visit and allow the healing process to begin. Cleanse your soul of the last vestiges of racism, and come over to a better world of hope, understanding and self-awareness.

Sincerely and respectfully,

A Clarendon neighbor

That is one of the vilest pieces of writing I've read in years. The writer makes so many assumptions about the psychology and motivations of white Obama supporters that it's infuriating. The one possibility that never seems to enter this writer's mind is that some people like Obama because they agree with his ideas and they don't care one way or the other about his skin color. Racism is a cancer that continues to eat away the American soul. I hope it's not too late to take a very sharp scalpel to this idiocy and excise it once and for all.


Dave said...

This election is revealing that bigotry still remains strong in America.

Barbara said...


Stephen said...

It's incredible to think such a mentality is still in existence in 21st century America!
It also demonstrates the cowardly nature of the person who wrote it by not even identifying their name to the letter.