“If you don’t vote for Obama you are a racist!” “What’s the matter? Afraid of a black man being in a position of power?” “If Obama loses, racism is the only reason McCain might beat him.”
Yeah, we are all sick and tired of this nonsense but don’t think it’s over because the presidential campaign came to an end. Over and over and again and again the “R” word mantra was dragged out and thrown onto the floor in front of Republicans. Don’t look at Obama’s ideology and background just vote for him because he has a nice suntan.
Well I’m sure it may have worked on a few Republicans and we know it did with most Democrats but how come we have a double standard in this country when it comes to voting for black candidates? Barack Obama is not an “African American”, he is bi-racial with a white mother and a father with African ancestry. Since it was much more politically advantageous to do so Obama ran almost exclusively as a black candidate while throwing his “white side” into the back of the closet. His Caucasian lineage was hardly ever brought up throughout the primaries and general election except when it came in handy.
This election was touted as one where America could finally throw off the burden of racism and the chains of her past and move beyond the racial divide…if we could all just come together, see the light and vote for Obama. The healing will begin, our country will miraculously come together and we will all hold hands and sing songs in the middle of the street…if we just vote for Obama.
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Well not quite. You see even after Obama’s seven hundred million dollar victory in the presidential election racism is still a major problem in our country according to some folks. And they are the ones that write the stuff that others read and believe. Just when does the stigma of racism disappear and who gets to decide when the day has finally arrived?
There is little doubt that pushing the racial agenda has made some people wealthy and is a perennial and often singular campaign strategy for the Democrats. As long as people can make money and politicians can get elected pushing racism in this country the issue will never be overcome.
I am not going to go into a long history of the shameful treatment of blacks in this country nor delve into the origins of the slave trade and the responsibilities of those that sold their own people into it, that is not my point in this article. What I cannot understand is why there is this double standard when it comes to the subject of racism and Republicans. Obama’s minions called racism on everyone that was in any way critical of his ideology, radical background or campaign platform, a strategy that his top adviser David Axlerod is well known for. Remember Geraldine Ferraro’s comments in March ’08 to the Torrance, California newspaper, The Daily Breeze? At the time of the interview she was a big fundraiser and member of the finance committee for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign.
“If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept.”
Obama’s supporters seized the opportunity and dutifully screamed racism over the comments and all hell broke loose. Eventually she stepped away from the Clinton campaign so as not to be a further distraction. Now I realize Ferraro is a partisan Democrat and supported Obama in the election but it just goes to show you the Obama people would go after anyone with a vengeance if they dare to criticize Obama.
So just what does happen when a black Republican runs for high office? Well let’s go back a few years to 2006.
John Kenneth “Ken” Blackwell, an Ohio native, made a historical run for the governorship of Ohio. In fact he was the very first African American to be a candidate for governor from either party in Ohio, ever. Blackwell was born, grew up and attended and graduated from college in Cincinnati. He later went on to teach at the same college where he earned his Masters Degree, Xavier University.
He was selected by president George H. W. Bush to serve as undersecretary in the Department of Housing and Urban Development and ambassador to the U.N. Human Rights Commission.
After this he was elected as the Ohio State Treasurer in 1994 and Secretary of State in 1998. Ohio voters reelected Blackwell as Secretary of State in 2002.
In 2006 Blackwell ran for governor in Ohio against Democrat Ted Strickland, a six term member of the United States House of Representatives… and a white guy.
Did the people of Ohio seize the opportunity to make history and elect the first black person ever as their governor? Were people asked to set aside their ideology and join together to overcome racial divisions and elect this man to the top job in Ohio? Were citizens called racist for not voting for Blackwell? Was he qualified for the position? No, no, no and yes but he lost garnering only 37% of the votes. How could this be? Here the good people of Ohio had a chance to not only show the country but the world the progress they had made when it came to being colorblind yet they failed miserably and elected the white guy. According to one Ohio newspaper, voters would “prefer to see a Democrat occupy the governor’s mansion.”
In 2006 former Pittsburgh Steelers football star Lynn Swann tossed his helmet into the ring as the Republican challenger to incumbent governor of Pennsylvania Ed Rendell. Swann a first time office seeker, retired from pro football after the 1982 season and has been spending his time as a commentator for ABC Sports, public speaker, and has sat on several prominent corporate boards. His campaign was based on the typical conservative values of tax cuts, welfare and tort reform, education improvements and limits on abortion rights.
In ’06 The Washington Post, not nearly as concerned however in ’08 when Obama was the novice candidate for PRESIDENT, had some serious doubts about whether Swann was up to the task of becoming governor of Pennsylvania.
….as Swann traverses the nation’s sixth most populous state he is trailed by recurring doubts about whether he’s fit to tackle the job. Questions, in other words, about what Swann has ever run before. Besides post patterns.
“Probably Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America, when I was national board chair for two years,” Swann says. (Pressed on this, Swann allows that the position was a part-time volunteer appointment that entailed no day-to-day management responsibilities.)
He sits in a conference room, his long fingers behind his head, a posture of relaxation. But many of Swann’s responses come out clipped and abrupt. This is especially so on the matter of why he’s running for governor, as opposed to a non-executive office, such as Congress. That has been the preferred route of other former sports heroes, such as NFL great Steve Largent (a former GOP congressman from Oklahoma); Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Bunning (a Republican senator from Kentucky); and NBA great Bill Bradley (a former Democratic U.S. senator from New Jersey).
“Did George W. Bush have a payroll to meet prior to running for governor of Texas?” Swann asks. When a reporter mentions the president’s stint as owner of the Texas Rangers, Swann protests that Bush wasn’t the team’s day-to-day manager. (Bush also ran an oil business.)
Either way, Swann has a larger point to make: “There are lots of people who come to politics from varied backgrounds who have done well,” he says. “If you go back to the Founding Fathers, I don’t think that they intended for everyone to be a professional politician.”
One of the harsher tests for a first-time candidate is parrying questions from the media. Swann has had a relatively easy go of it so far. But he is clearly on uncertain footing when facing scrutiny.
This was apparent during a February interview on ABC’s “This Week,” in which he demonstrated, at best, a shaky grasp of some issues he might face as governor.
Swann says he was “disappointed” by the interview, but not by his own performance. Rather, he says he was disappointed “that George [Stephanopoulos] had so much of his own agenda on the table,” which he characterizes as “trying to prove himself a better journalist, or trying to put someone on the spot.” (George was a little kinder to Obama when he interviewed him)
Indeed, Swann’s race is something of an X-factor against Rendell, who, like many other Democrats, has received overwhelming support from African Americans when he runs against Republicans. Roughly 85 percent of black voters supported Rendell in 2002….
Did the people of Pennsylvania seize the opportunity to make history and elect the first black person ever as their governor? Were people asked to set aside their ideology and join together to overcome racial divisions and elect this man to the top job in Pennsylvania? Were citizens called racist for not voting for Swann? Was he qualified for the position? No, no, no and perhaps but he lost capturing less than 40% of the vote. How could this be? Here the good people of Pennsylvania had a chance to not only show the country but the world the progress they had made when it came to being colorblind yet they also failed miserably and elected the white guy. Voters who backed Rendell said Swann failed to convince them he is gubernatorial timber.
“I don’t like his smile,” said Darin Robinson, 32, of Levittown. “He’s got kind of a Hollywood smile. You can’t be too Hollywood dealing with people who just work every day.” (unless you are Obama of course)
Many will say he lost due to his lack of a resume but I ask how thin is Obama’s? In fact back in ’06 how thin was Deval Patrick’s? Who is he? He is the governor of Massachusetts and he too is black. The difference? He is a liberal Democrat and possesses no real qualifications for the position he holds. In fact right off the bat he caused some problems for himself when he dropped 11 grand on drapes for the governor’s pad, dumped the state issued Ford Crown Victoria for a fancy pants Cadillac and hired a former high level election campaign aide to the tune of $75,000 to “assist” his wife with whatever a governor’s wife needs assistance with. Of course we don’t hear much about this sort of thing in the lamestream media. We know all about Sarah Palin’s wardrobe expenditures though, phony as they may have been.
We continue on.
In 2002 Michael Steele was selected by Robert Ehrlich, Republican candidate for governor of Maryland, as his running mate and nominee for Lieutenant Governor. After the successful campaign Steele became the first African American ever elected as Lt. Governor in Maryland (the highest elected office ever held by a black Republican in the country at the time) and the first African American to serve in a Maryland state-wide office for any party.
Interestingly, during the campaign the clearly left leaning Baltimore Sun newspaper endorsed the Democratic ticket of the incumbent Lt. Governor Kathleen Kennedy Townsend and her running mate Charles R. Larson saying about Larson, “[he is] a highly principled and deeply respected former head of the Naval Academy whose leadership experience and expertise in management and budget will complement Ms. Townsend’s own strengths.” Their comments about Steele were a little less flattering, “By contrast, Mr. Ehrlich’s running mate, state GOP chairman Michael S. Steele, brings little to the team but the color of his skin.” (emphasis added by me) There you have it. A liberal rag claiming Steele’s game is nothing but skin color. How about those tolerant lefties folks!
A little more background.
Steele earned a bachelor’s degree in international relations in 1981 from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center in 1991. He has traveled around the world while employed at the Washington D.C. office of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. Subsequently he left the firm and struck out on his own forming the business and legal consulting firm, The Steele Group.
Steele has held numerous positions within the GOP and assisted in several political campaigns. In December 2000, he was elected chairman of the Maryland Republican Party, the first time an African American had ever risen to to that position in the country.
In October of 2005 Steele announced he was going to run for the U.S. Senate when Democrat Paul Sarbanes decided against running for reelection. Steele, who was part of the Ehrlich administration that overcame a huge inherited budget deficit left by a Democrat governor and drastically reduced the state unemployment rate resulting in a net increase of tens of thousands of new jobs would certainly seem qualified to be a U.S. senator with this extensive administrative, business and legal background.
His opponent for the open U.S. Senate in Maryland was Democrat Benjamin Louis “Ben” Cardin, a several term member of the United States House of Representatives… and a white guy.
Did the people of Maryland seize the opportunity to make history and elect the first black person ever as their Senator? Were people asked to set aside their ideology and join together to overcome racial divisions and elect Steele to the U.S. Senate? Were citizens called racist for not voting for him? Was he qualified for the position? No, no, no and yes but he lost to the white guy getting 44% of the vote. How could this be? Here the good people of Maryland had a chance to not only show the country but the world the progress they had made when it came to being colorblind yet they too failed miserably.
We aren’t done.
This particular campaign was marred by several instances of vicious racism unleashed upon Steele that go way beyond anything Ferraro said about Obama. According to the Washington Times,
Black Democratic leaders in Maryland say that racially tinged attacks against Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele in his bid for the U.S. Senate are fair because he is a conservative Republican.
Such attacks against the first black man to win a statewide election in Maryland include pelting him with Oreo cookies during a campaign appearance, calling him an “Uncle Tom” and depicting him as a black-faced minstrel on a liberal Web log.
Continuing with the Washington Times article:
During the 2002 campaign, Democratic supporters pelted Mr. Steele with Oreo cookies during a gubernatorial debate at Morgan State University in Baltimore.
State Sen. Verna Jones, Baltimore Democrat and vice chairman of the General Assembly’s legislative black caucus, said black Republicans deserve criticism because the Republican Party has not promoted the interests of the black community.
“The public policies supported by Democratic principles are the ones that most impact the African-American community,” she said. “I’m not saying [Mr. Steele] is a sell-out. That’s not for me to say.”
Steele campaign spokesman Leonardo Alcivar said state Democrats are afraid of losing the black vote to Mr. Steele.
“That has caused a great tremble throughout the Maryland Democratic Party,” he said. “Of course [they are] going to condone racism. It’s nothing new, and it’s not surprising.”
Can anyone believe this happened to a black person running for ANY office in this country? In this day and age? Despicable would be an understatement but who were the culprits? Democrats including black Democrats who did not want to see anyone of their race succeed unless it was by their arcane rules.
Democrats do not want to see minorities or women rise to the top echelons of the Republican party for a very simple reason, they will start losing elections all over the country. If they can continue to pretend to be the party to these traditional voting blocks they can remain in power. They cannot afford to slip up and allow any blacks, Hispanics or women to become leaders in the GOP-look how they savaged Sarah Palin-because they will lose their valuable “racist” and “sexist” labels they attach to the Republicans every election.
As Maryland state Sen. Lisa A. Gladden, a black Baltimore Democrat says, “Party trumps race, especially on the national level,” she said. “If you are bold enough to run, you have to take whatever the voters are going to give you. It’s democracy, perhaps at its worse, but it is democracy.”
Really? Well perhaps the Republicans can use this line the next time Obama or any other black Democrats scream racism when their policies or backgrounds are questioned. Democrats aren’t racist? Please, spare me the nonsense.