Archive for the ‘Racism’ Category

Being America’s First Black President Has Its Privileges

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Apparently, being America’s first black President has its benefits. It means President Obama can cry racism (and get away with it) anytime Republicans criticize his policies or his past, specifically his past association with a racist pastor.  When the  New York Times  published a story last week about a GOP plan to run negative ads connecting Obama to Reverend Jeremiah Wright and his race baiting sermons, the Obama race machine pounced.

bama campaign manager Jim Messina called it “The blueprint for a hate-filled, divisive campaign of character assassination speaks for itself. It also reflects how far the party has drifted in four short years since John McCain rejected these very tactics.”  How is it hate-filled or racist to run ads revealing the truth about Obama’s 20 plus year relationship with Wright who gave race-baiting sermons? If anything running such ads would reveal a hate-filled side of Obama’s character. How could Obama allow a reverend like Wright to marry him and baptize his two children?

The moment the story ran, the mainstream news media, who is so in the tank for Obama no matter how bad a president he is, called the GOP strategy “hard line” and  “racist.”  And as predicted, Romney, billionaire Joe Ricketts and Karl Rove ran scared and repudiated the strategy. In 2008, Senator John McCain declined to produce similar ads for fear of being called a racist by the media. Obama and his team have put Republicans on notice that they will  inject race into the 2012 campaign at every turn.

Talk about a double standard. The Republicans should not have caved into Obama’s campaign of threats and intimidation. I bet all the white presidents before Obama would have liked to be able to pull the race card out of their back pockets at the drop of hat. I’m sure Bill Clinton really wished he could have used the excuse of being black to blame Republicans for trying to impeach him.

A turn coat Republican leaked the now derailed 54 page plan, to the New York Times. The plan, entitled The Defeat of Barack Hussein Obama: The Ricketts Plan to End His Spending for Good, outlined a strategy to run a series of ads linking Obama with Rev. Wright. Billionaire Joe Ricketts  planned to pour $10million into a pro Romney Super PAC to run ads reminding Americans of Obama’s long relationship with racist Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

What’s wrong with this strategy? Obama belonged to Wright’s Chicago church Trinity United Church of Christ. This is where Wright gave racists sermons. According to the book Game Change, Wright railed about the treatment of blacks: “The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes the three-strike law, and  then wants us to sing God Bless America. No, no, no! Not God bless America-Goddamn America!” In another sermon, he referred to America as the “US of KKK A,” (Game Change, p. 234).

After 9/11, Wright preached America brought this horrific act upon itself: “We bombed Hiroshima! We bombed Nagasaki! And we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye. We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back into our own front yards!,”(Game Change, p. 234).

Some Republican Super PAC should have the guts not only to run ads connecting the deep relationship Obama had with Rev. Wright but also include remarks from Obama’s 2008 race speech “A More Perfect Union.” The speech was a political gimmick Obama used to get the fawning media off his back when Rolling Stone first exposed his relationship with Wright.  But Obama refused to denounce Wright. He said “I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community.”

There is nothing racist about running a political ad which shows Obama never denounced his relationship with a race-baiter like Wright who preached America deserved 9/11. Since  2008, Obama and his team have always been the ones injecting race into his campaign and administration. While campaigning in Missouri in 2008, Obama accused McCain of trying to scare voters about him even though McCain vigorously defended Obama against attacks from some McCain supporters. Obama said: “So what they’re going to try to do is make you scared of me. You know, he’s not patriotic enough. He’s got a funny name. You know, he doesn’t look like all those other presidents on those dollar bills, you know. He’s too risky,” (Game change, p. 331)

If Obama thinks it’s fair game to attack Romney’s record at the equity firm Bain Capital, then it’s fair game for Romney and Republicans to shine the light on Obama’s past. Being the first black president does not give Obama a free pass on being held accountable to the same standards of criticism as those who went before him. Voters deserve to hear the truth about Obama in 2012, not narratives spun of make believe.

Cain Slammed for Telling Perry ‘N-Word’ Not Cool in Modern World

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

Someone told me recently she liked reading my blog but it seemed like everything I wrote about was race. I guess I’m going to live up to that person’s perception today. Admittedly, I write from the perspective of a black woman, so I can’t help notice these type of stories. For the record the purpose of my blog is to educate people on politics, awaken black liberals to a new way of thinking and encourage people to vote based on issues not party.

I don’t intentionally sit down at the key board each week itching to write about the intersection of politics and race but it seems there is always a politically racial story staring and at times smacking me in the face. Like today, when the only black Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said it was “insulting” for Governor Rick Perry and his family to lease a hunting camp in Texas known as “Niggerhead.”

This racist word used to describe blacks is emblazoned on a rock prominently situated at a gated entrance to the camp. The Washington Post broke the story, detailing how the rock has been painted over, turned over but not removed since Perry’s father and later the Governor himself began leasing the spot in 1983.

Cain condemned Perry for being associated with such a word, saying on This Week:

“Since Gov. Perry has been going there for years to hunt, I think that it shows a lack of sensitivity for a long time of not taking that word off of that rock and renaming the place. . . .Yes, it was painted over. But how long ago was it painted over? So I’m still saying that it is a sign of insensitivity.”

One would think conservatives, including those who call themselves Republicans like me and Tea Party Patriots, would be applauding Cain’s response. After all, many of these same conservatives have said they whole hearted support of Cain as a candidate has nothing to do with the color of his skin but his positions on ALL issues, one would assume they would be supportive of Cain’s position on racial equality and inclusion.

So, you can surmise I was surprised when people on my tweeter stream turned on Cain, blasting him for “using the race card.” Yes, these good PATRIOTS who supported Cain were now defending Perry’s complicit endorsement of the use of the N-word by not removing the ugly rock form the camp site.

One true patriot tweeted:

But the tweets below are worse and demonstrate conservative voters need to come to grips with the reality that we live in the 21st century where there is no place for the word nigger in the American discourse nor should it be associated with any presidential candidate who actually wants to win in 2012.

It truly boggles the mind how some conservatives can support Cain in one breath because he’s got winning solutions then dump their support for him and unfollow him in seconds because he stands up against racial hate. Apparently, talking about race as a conservative candidate is taboo. You can’t mention it PERIOD, even when it’s slapping you in your face.

Does the #GOP want to win in 2012 or become known as party of hate? Ask yourself and change that tune, please! This is exactly what the #GOP doesn’t need right now. It won’t endear voters to us in 2012. Excelsior Herman Cain!

Slavery “R” Us: Bachmann’s Gaffe

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

Why do so many white Republicans love bringing up slavery and then wonder why the GOP has the reputation among liberals as being a party of racists? Maybe they really do want to purge the party of what little black conservatives the GOP has and alienate independents in the process. Just when I thought I had heard almost every kind of slavery gaffe and apology uttered by Republicans, Rep. Michelle Bachmann joins in the fun.

(To refresh your memory, Gov. Haley Barbour said he didn’t think Gov. Bob McDonnell omitting slavery from his Confederate History month didn’t “amount to diddly.” This was said prior to Barbour saying he ” just didn’t remember [the Civil Rights Movement] being that bad.”) No, I don’t make this stuff up.

Back to Rep. Bachmann, GOP presidential candidate and party darling, Bachmann signed the “The Marriage Vow: A Declaration of Dependence upon Marriage and Family,” a pledge created by an Iowa conservative Bob Vander Plaats, president and CEO of the Christian group The Family Leader. Obviously, Bachmann signed it to score points with Iowa voters in her quest for the White House in 2012. Plaats declared his group won’t endorse any GOP candidate who doesn’t sign the pledge.

The pledge is what you would expect from a socially conservative group, advocating traditional families and Defense of the Marriage Act. But on the top of the first page, the marriage vow pledge states “the institution of marriage in America is in great crisis” and the first bullet point under this statement is that black children were better off during slavery then they are today under the nation’s first Black president.

“Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA first African-American President.”

It’s hard to argue Bachmann didn’t know this was in the pledge when it’s on the first page of the document and if she admits she signed it without reading it that’s even more troubling someone running for president doesn’t read documents before signing them. It’s impossible to fathom how anyone could read a statement like that about black families during slavery and not laugh.

Perhaps Mr. Plaats and Ms. Bachmann along with other signers of his pledge need to be reminded that blacks were treated like animals during slavery and recognized as the property of their slave owners. Slaves were not allowed to marry, wives were routinely raped by their masters and family members were separated through sales on the auction block to whomever the owner could get the highest bid for the slave. I don’t know what kind of American history Bachmann, Plaats or Barbour have been reading but I can tell you slavery certainly wasn’t the glory days for black families.

The one accurate point the pledge makes and what they should have started with is that the welfare program has caused the disintegration of the black family.

“LBJ 1965 War on Poverty was triggered in part by the famous “Moynihan Report” finding that the black out-of-wedlock birthrate had hit 26%; today, the white rate exceeds that, the overall rate is 41%, and over 70% of African-American babies are born to single parents4 – a prime sociological indicator for poverty, pathology and prison regardless of race or ethnicity.”

Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan warned about this alarming trend among Blacks in his “1965 Moynihan Report or The Negro Family: The Case for National Action, where he noted “the breakdown of the negro family has led to a startling increase in welfare dependency.”

Moynihan argues what we all know today that fatherless black homes leads to higher rates of unemployment, poverty, illegitimate births and crime among blacks compared to whites. What the Marriage pledge should have noted was that Democrats’ 40 plus decades of social welfare policies have killed the black family and life for blacks under the nation’s first black president has only grown bleaker.

Under Obama, unemployment for blacks has soared to 16% compared to the national average of 9.2%. In cities like Brooklyn and parts of Washington, DC the rate is 30%-50%. In Milwaukee, 34% of black males are unemployed. A recent study conducted by the Economic Policy Institute found in 2009 the median net worth for white households had fallen 24 percent to $97,860 while the median net worth for black households plummeted 83% to $2,170.

Instead of coming up with offensive, inaccurate references about black families during slavery, Republicans should be reminding over 90% of black voters who voted for Obama what a horrible situation he has created for them. Any marriage pledge should demonstrate how out-of wedlock births harm blacks economically and encourage marriage in the black community.

It’s not okay Mr. Plaats apologized for the racist remark and removed the statement from the pledge. It’s also not okay Bachmann gave no credible response for why she signed the pledge with the slave statement. The statement should have never been written! Then you wouldn’t have had to apologize for it or back peddle from the truth.

Note to Republicans: slavery, segregation and the Civil Rights Movement were not happy times for blacks; so stop telling us those days didn’t amount to diddly. The road to the White House is not campaigning like you’re living in the good ole days of the Jim Crow South.

Gorillas, Chimps, & Spooks: The GOP’s Favorite Things

Monday, April 18th, 2011

The natives are restless again. It seems the more I try to sell what’s good about the Republican party to my liberal and black friends, fiscal responsibility, limited government and lower taxes, the harder it gets. Republicans continue to prove racism is alive, well and kicking within the established ranks of the party and it needs to be expunged from the GOP.

Once again, we have white Republicans portraying President Barack Obama, our first elected BLACK president, as a chimpanzee. Orange County Republican Committee member Marilyn Davenport thought it would be funny to create a portrait of a chimpanzee family with a Mom and Dad holding a baby chimp in overalls with the face of President Obama and the caption, “Now you know why — No birth certificate!” Davenport then emailed it to some of her closet friends and other committee members.

When her grotesque, disrespectful, racist caricature of the President of the United States was revealed to a reporter, she called the person’s action “cowardly” (ain’t that the pot calling the kettle black) and defended her actions:

“I’m sorry if my email offended anyone, I simply found it amusing regarding the character of Obama and all the questions surrounding his origin of birth. “In no way did I even consider the fact he’s half black when I sent out the email. In fact, the thought never entered my mind until one or two other people tried to make this about race. We all know a double standard applies regarding this president. I received plenty of emails about George Bush that I didn’t particularly like, yet there was no ‘cry’ in the media about them.”

Her excuse for being caught in “emailing while racist” ranks up there with “the dog ate my homework” and “some of my closest friends are black.” This reminds me of the summer of 2009 when reported on its blog that Sherri Goforth, legislative aid to Tennessee State Senator Diane Black (R-Gallatin), emailed “Historical Keepsake Photo” to “the wrong list of people.”

Every white president in the image was depicted with a portrait or photo of himself until you get to our 44th and first black president Barack Obama. His picture is a caricature of the grossest, most racist sort: a black background with white eyes piercing through. This image is reminiscent of a spook, a racist term used for blacks to suggest because of their dark skin they can blend into the night and look like a ghost. The image also looks like a coon, another abhorrent caricature portraying blacks as lazy, inarticulate buffoons.

I dubbed this the long hot GOP racist summer of 2009 because South Carolinian Republican activist Rusty DePass compared Michelle Obama to a gorilla, who escaped from Columbia, South Carolina Zoo. Then I wrote: “Either image is offensive and racist and particularly repugnant when applied to the President of the United States. It reminds us this country and more importantly the Republican party has a long way to go on race relations and living in reality.”

Ms. Goforth didn’t resign and only was reprimanded by her boss. Of course Ms. Davenport is showing the same racist resilience and refusing to resign or admit she did anything wrong.

Since blacks were brought to America as slaves in the 1600s, we have been compared to monkey’s, chimpanzees, gorillas, apes, ridiculed as coons, sambos, mammies and Toms, anything short of equals to whites. The fact that Aunt Jemima syrup is still sold in the US is repugnant in itself. And that not too long ago, the image of the overweight black mammy with a bandana wrapped around her head like Mammy in Gone with the Wind still adorned the bottle of syrup is even more abhorrent and repulsive.

Apparently, Orange County GOP Committee Chairman Scott Baugh has called for Davenport’s resignation but he needs to do more than that. If she refuses to resign, Baugh should kick her off. As a conservative BLACK woman, I’m sick of talking out of both sides of my mouth, condemning the racism erstwhile calling myself a Republican and encouraging people of color to step into a GOP tent in which they don’t seem to be welcome.

Newsflash GOP: White bigots don’t own the Republican party and We Blacks have just as much right as whites to believe in the Grand Old Party as the rest of you. GOP and Tea Party Newsflash #2: You both need to get over this birther and racist talk. It should not be tolerated by party leaders like Speaker John Boehner. Obama is a US citizen and yes a Black man. If you have a problem with either, get over it. This kind of bigoted talk direct or inferred isn’t going to win you elections in the 21st century. It may have worked before 1964 but not today. Criticize Obama on his performance not the color of his skin.

While some Americans may not agree with Obama’s policies, I think it shameful he and the First Lady continue to endure this utter disrespect of the office of the President by the people of the United States. I think some Americans need to go back and read the Constitution and remember “all men are equated equal,” yes that includes the Black president of the United States.