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One more on Racism

I swear this is the last quote I’ll post on the topic for a while:

I got a note from a good friend yesterday expressing shock, and anger, about Drudge and Malkin’s usage of that alleged racial beat-down on a school-bus [to attack Obama]. On some level, I wonder if something’s wrong with me. I’m neither shocked, nor angry. This is exactly how I expected these fools to respond to a black president.

If anything, I’m a little giddy. For black people, the clear benefit of Obama is that he is quietly exposing an ancient hatred that has simmered in this country for decades.  Rightly or wrongly, a lot of us grew tired of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, mostly because they presented easy foils for Limbaugh-land. Moreover, again rightly or wrongly, they were used to define all of us.

It’s intensely grating to live say, in Atlanta, and have some dude in Harlem crowned as your unelected leader. It’s even more grating if said dude’s agenda seems, in large measure, come down to standing in front of cameras and tweaking his opponents. It’s no mistake that O’Reilly and Sharpton would break bread together at Sylvia’s–they feed each other.

But Barack Obama, bourgeois in every way that bourgeois is right and just, will not dance. He tells kids to study–and they seethe. He accepts an apology for an immature act of rudeness–and they go hysterical. He takes his wife out for a date–and their veins bulge. His humanity, his ordinary blackness, is killing them. Dig the audio of his response to Kanye West–the way he says, “He’s a jackass.” He sounds like one of my brothers. And that’s the point, because that’s what he is. Barack Obama refuses to be their nigger. And it’s driving them crazy.


  1. james wrote:

    TNC is race-obsessed, so this comes as no surprise. He doesn’t know an issue that can’t be explained from a racial angle or be linked to football. Worse, like Sullivan(love to hate him), he is obsessed with Obama’s coolness and sees it as a reflection of his own. They sometimes talk about Obama like he’s and idea or state of mind (but that idea is not about race they hasten to add!)

    But this racial victimization bit that punditry is stuck on this week won’t play well in 2010 for the democrats. Independents, who normally aren’t in to scoring debate points, hate it.

    TNC is correct however that Obama has shifted perceptions of black leadership and the future of the civil rights agenda.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 9:58 pm | Permalink
  2. Andy Alexis-Baker wrote:

    Are you always a complete shithead, or just on this blog?

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 10:01 pm | Permalink
  3. Andy Alexis-Baker wrote:

    That is directed at James.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 10:02 pm | Permalink
  4. james wrote:

    Depends on what a shithead is I guess. If it means I say things you don’t agree with I’m guessing ‘always a shithead’ sounds about right.

    You will find reality to be a shithead eventually.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 10:20 pm | Permalink
  5. myles wrote:

    while we’re on the topic of Obama, did anyone catch this????

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 8:23 am | Permalink
  6. Yeah, reality has such a damn liberal bias eh?

    Having racial categories for people just points that culture is race obsessed. At least these people recognize it.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 8:48 am | Permalink
  7. james wrote:

    No reality is a shithead when liberals realize it too has racial categories not constructs. This normally knocks them square on their ass when they are choosing a house or school for their kids.
    Racism is just an overused political charge to make conservatives pay politically, but when the ‘construct’ start to cost them personally…..well you can still at least vote for Obama. Now there is some subtlety of racism there.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 9:30 am | Permalink
  8. Duh. This is why we (or at least I, and I’m sure Andy and Halden) ain’t ‘liberals.’

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 10:31 am | Permalink
  9. james wrote:

    I agree that your self-”construct”ed identities are not liberal. But then I figure you don’t own a home, have a school-aged child, or a social location outside of the academy or in Halden’s case, its support industries, so your chosen identity and judgments of reality haven’t been tested yet. I hate to play the age card….

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 11:33 am | Permalink
  10. Then don’t play it — its tired and just simply not true, never mind patronizing. Experience is important of course, but that doesn’t mean our life experience will turn us into you

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 2:52 pm | Permalink
  11. james wrote:

    No of course you wouldn’t become me, but I can assure you projections of future identities are notoriously off target at your age and social situation. How we end up who we are is often a mystery but the related regrets work only one way: one regrets their past opinions rarely the current situation. I’m sure your theological journey already bears this out.

    After all, where did all the hippies go? Sure there were sell-outs but probability and statistics should suggest some developmental psychology going on.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 5:21 pm | Permalink
  12. james wrote:

    That was for you D.W. sorry about that.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 5:21 pm | Permalink
  13. Indeed we do end up in places where we did not expect. And of course past work rarely holds up from the test of time; however, it would be wrong to see the move that, say, Michael Novak did from leftist to capitalist apologist as the measure of maturation. Marx developed, or matured but he was still a Marx-ist. Hence the terms early and late to talk about thinkers. The point is simple, large discontinuity with one’s past isn’t the only mark of maturation.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 12:36 am | Permalink

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