Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Race about Race

Tucson, Arizona. Liza posted Race and the Swiftboating of Obama over six weeks ago, and back then, she placed her focus on the GOP as those writing the script. At the time I thought: 1) the Democrats could not possibly be stupid enough to give the nomination to HRC, and 2) The GOP would defer the carnage until Obama got the nomination. A John Dixon piece reinforces Liza's remarks as well as the ones I'm about to make.

We can only speculate what the Reverend Jeremiah Wright sought to accomplish earlier this week. Perhaps Texpatriot is correct that Obama endorsed Wright's making statements strong enough to create the opportunity to conduct a split inoculating Obama from the GOP association assault. I don't think so. At present, I think Sunday (NAACP) and Monday (National Press) are distinct events with different dynamics. Although intense, Sunday was polished and frankly moving, a powerful performance I found inspiring but perhaps ahead of its time for today's audience. My current speculation, subject to revision, is that Monday was a slip.

Without blinking about the color of his skin, the students across the college campuses of the country (she won Pennsylvania, but look at its colleges) overwhelmingly embrace Obama. Older white America that came of age at a time when few attended college have fears about what a "black man in the White House" means. We see racism distilled, concern shifting from an assessment of the individual's character and capabilities to nothing but the color of his skin and what that might mean.

The advertisements Clinton is running against Obama are so disgusting and repulsive that my ability to vote for her, already tenuous, has been annihilated. The recent events put a Hillary nomination in the context of race, at worst racism on the part of the party itself and at best the racism the party anticipates among general election voters. Either inflicts massive damage, and the belief spreads among the African American community that Hillary's campaign is deliberately undermining Obama (knowing she cannot win) so he will fail and give her a shot in 2012. Correct or not (I think not), the view points to growing cynicism regarding Clinton's motivation and character.

If by fluke the Democrats cave and nominate Clinton, the flag of racism flies over their ship. If they nominate Obama, we can safely conclude the GOP will fly the flag of racism without shame. They haven't hesitated in the past.

Clinton's shift from theme to theme to theme (now she's a working girl) show a frantic search for message and marketing, not authenticity. McCain has nothing to add. The candidate with soul, a fresh perspective, and remarkable courage walks into the lion's den facing likely annihilation. If a young African American with Obama's character wins the presidency of the United States, a shock wave will inspire the world about what is possible. He tells us that yes, we can. Can we? If this nation can elect as its president a young African American over establishment insiders with lifetime political careers and connections, what else can it do?

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Republicans have already held meetings to discuss race and how to most effectively undermine Obama.

One possibility is the questioning of his true allegiances. They have already floated test messages regarding his loyalty to the country and ties to other elements. Does he really love America, etc.

Is he out for revenge because of slavery? The lapel pin hand and his dropped hands during the pledge. What is he really about?

McCain is the sure thing. Remember, voters are stupid.

5/01/2008 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Observer said...

You are caught up in the hype and over reacting. This will all pass.

Obama will win the nomination, and he will defeat McCain. The media is just beating its drums and fueling drama because that's how they get viewers.

In two months people will say "Jeremiah who?"

5/01/2008 12:09 PM  
Blogger The Navigator said...

Observer may be correct. Joe Andrew, who headed the Democratic party while Bill Clinton was president, has switched his allegiance to Obama. His wife was working full time as a volunteer for Hillary Clinton. She has also switched to Obama.

Andrew is an important super delegate in Indiana, which as you know is about to have its primary.

5/01/2008 3:01 PM  

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