Monday, August 18, 2008
A black backlash against Obama?
Despite what Obama has said, his presidency could provoke a black backlash because the expectations are so high, others say.
African-Americans who would expect a President Obama to be a vigorous advocate for their cause -- may be disappointed by Obama's approach to race if he becomes president, some say.
Paul Street, author of the forthcoming book on Obama, says Obama may be a symbol of bold racial change but he is personally cautious about race. A President Obama won't want to appear to favor blacks because he might lose political support if he appears as the "angry black man" in the White House.
Street says Obama understands that risk and has run as a "race-neutral" candidate who talks about racial oppression as something largely confined to the past.
"Barack plays a very active role in damping down race consciousness," Street says. "Race neutrality is one of the great characteristics of his campaign."
African-Americans may also be disappointed by an Obama presidency because they may have forgotten what Obama is -- a politician, says David Sirota, author of "The Uprising, "a book that examines how populist movements in America shape public policy changes.
"He's like any politician. He's cautious," Sirota says. "He's a potential vehicle for change, and I think he is a good vehicle, but he is just a vehicle."
The above is an excerpt from an article posted on CNN.com a few weeks back.
After reading it...I could only shake my head and wonder what the heck some people are thinking! I actually posted this blog a few weeks back some where else but, thought it definitely needed to be posted here at SWYM NATION!
So, here goes:
Here again we have another example of a few black Americans being so damn ridiculous it actually pains me myself to have to admit to being one! I speak not about all black people, but clearly the ones so damn ignorant that their thought process would lead them down this narrow minded path of stupidity when it comes to assessing Barack Obama and his potential role as leader of the so called free world.
Of COURSE he's got to play race neutral. Why shouldn't he?! And, in fact, he's a man of mixed ethnicity anyway!
His success thus far has had very much to do with the fact that he's not necessarily a "black man"...with an ax to grind....holdin' it down for the oppressed brothas and sistas of America. He's a black man...yes....anyone can see that. However....he's been effective at being so engaging and respected NOT because of his color but because of WHO HE IS AS A MAN!
He's highly intelligent. Well spoken...Eloquent. Gregarious, likeable.
He's a thinker and someone people respect as a leader. If he were white...he'd STILL be a viable candidate for the presidency and I'd still vote for him.
The last thing he needs to do is to get fired up and start preaching in some old school, civil rights movement type of fashion.
It's not about a "black man" getting into office and serving only us black folk! It's about BARACK OBAMA a man who happens to be..."black".... getting into office and serving the needs of our country. People can't expect him to run around campaigning on issues of "black" interest.
Should he be discussing the miserable conditions plaguing many black men and women in this country? The so called "justice" system? Should he discuss police brutality and racial profiling? Should he say he's going to "clean up the hood" and make things better in the inner cities? Should he be talking about racism on a whole? NO! Does it mean that he shouldn't make some or all of these issue a part of his agenda upon becoming elected? Yes. Hell yes! Most certainly!
So as to make my point clear: I'm not saying that Barack should abandon us brothas and sistas in any way...or sell out in some fashion to appeal to the white majority. .I'm simply saying that, he's got to be smart enough to make his way into the white house without coming off as an old school, angry "civil rights" leader who is only concerned or rather...primarily concerned with black people.
He's got to navigate the waters as an "everybody" candidate...for the people....all people!
Posted by CSS at 9:16 AM