Friday, August 1, 2008

Oh, Now Y'all Can Read Between The Lines?

So, apparently white people can now read between the lines when it comes to race.

That's the only thing I can take from this latest dust-up between the Obama and McCain campaigns. For those of y'all in the dark, Obama recently pointed out that he might have some difficulty blending in at a party for past presidents.

McCain's campaign and every conservative commentator in the world has accused Obama of "playing the race card." Y'all know how I despise that phrase, but that's a topic for another day. What I found curious was that all these white people suddenly were able to determine that Obama was talking about race although he never used the words black, white or race.

I don't know about y'all, but it's been my experience that white people typically don't think racism or race is involved in an issue unless it is stated explicitly. Remember when Don Imus swallowed his loafers regarding the Rutgers women's basketball team? Lots of people said his comments had nothing to do with race, they were about hair and "tough-looking" women.

Shoot, when Rodney King, Amadou Diallo and Sean Bell suffered at the hands of the police, the first thing some white people said was that race wasn't a factor. This was despite the fact that only young black men seem to enjoy getting gunned down or beaten in the streets.

Phrases like "you people," "those people", "welfare queens," "gangstas" and "thugs" aren't code words if you ask many white people. There were no color connotations in Hillary's appeals to "hard-working Americans." Nope, the only time it's ok to accuse somebody of racism or racist appeals, is they use one of the magical words like "nigger," and even that might not count because of hip hop.

Yet, Obama makes a comment about how Republicans will attack him because he doesn't look like all the past presidents, and suddenly all these previously dense conservatives can smell the racial implications in his comments like bloodhounds.

Isn't it amazing how that works?

I'm not arguing that Obama wasn't talking about race with his comment. I think that's exactly what he was doing in an effort to prevent McCain from going to to the next level with his attack ads. However, I don't think that's playing the race card. Given the Republicans past history, why wouldn't Obama assume that they would try to paint him as a scary, evil Negro?

But, what I'm really pissed about is the fact that so many white people now find themselves able to decipher implicit racial issues. I'm sure I'm not the only one who wishes they displayed this ability on a more regular basis. Historically, white people have shown a shocking ignorance when it comes to racial issues involving black people. They love to set impossible standards for claims of racism from black people, but those standards apparently evaporate when they think they are the victims of a racial attack.

Funny how that works, isn't it?


OG, The Original Glamazon said...

Right all day e'rry day! Yes, I just watched the interviews on the Today show regarding this.

This grasping at straws is really getting ridiculous. I mean really they ( maybe not McCain's campaign but definitely talk radio) are doing just what Barack said there are trying to generate fear of a different president.

I hear Limbaugh calls him the Magical Negro or something like that.

Next week it will be do you know that Obama is breathing? LORD.

McCain is making the same mistake HillBilly did, too much time talking about the opponent not enough time talking about what YOU are going to do. Any one who has studied advertising knowing before you mention the competition you better be sure your brand is solid. Its very hard to mention another while touting yourself, you could lose rather than win.

I remember when Pepsi actually mentioned Coke in its commercials many thought that was a risk. Well, I've drank coke and well John McCain is no coke.

Where are the ads that extol who McCain is what he stands for what he is doing, no instead he's talking about his opponent. And his opponent ain't really talking about him. What does this have to do with the issues and how he plans to handle them?

Oh well the saga continues.


Anonymous said...

Big Man, you are so right. I woke up this morning listening to NPR and heard a snippet of the conversation that Obama had that provoked McGrampy to cry foul with the race card..

Seems to me all Obama did was point out an interesting truth yet it is funny like you said how it was deemed that he was playing the race card. Looking at it in the context of what you wrote, it would appear that white folks have selective hearing when it comes to racial matters.

I suspect that ole McGrampy will be playing his race card on a regular since that's all he did was use his card.

WNG said...

I've turned it all off, Big Man. My only link to the MSM is Keith Olbermann. Other than that it's PBS and Air America all the way.
Because of crap like this. Please, please explain to me how this is news? These are men who have serious differences on serious life and death issues. Our lives, our country will be in on of their hands and instead of talking about actual issues we've got this crap going on.

grrr... blood pressure meds are expensive...

Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

im with OG
and dont belive the hype

WNG said...

ps - i posted today

slag said...

I'm so glad you posted on this issue! I've been thinking this very thing ever since yesterday. Apparently, when the McCain campaign and media engage in subtle racist attacks, they're not really being racist. But when Obama subtly calls those attacks out for what they are, he's being racist. This paradox has made me so angry and frustrated, I haven't been able to write a rational post on it. You have, so I'll just link to yours.

Crys said...

and by saying he doesn't look like the other presidents - he could easily be saying that he is 100 times more attractive. i mean that is pretty much a FACT lol
the man is HOT

WNG said...

way off topic AGAIN:

Just found out that Michelle will be here the week before she goes to Chucktown - so I'll get to meet her BEFORE Mama G does. I feel much better now. Still petty, but better :-)

BATS said...

Dude, don't you get it? Hypocrisy is the most American value we have, w/o hypocrisy, who knows where the hell the USA would be?

...think about it...


Imhotep said...

Interesting to see that McSenile is crying race card, when during the primaries 20% of white voters said they would not vote for a Black man, McSenile was McQuiet.

Those ignorant whites use the religion and race against Barack eveyday, and no one says shit!. Yet the Brotha points out the obvious (never any Black president, no Blacks on the currencies) and he's using the race card.

It only goes to show that for white folks to accept Blacks, we first have to give up our Blackness. They can kiss my ass!

the uppity negro said...

I think you hit this one on the head. I definitely didn't see this as the race card, let alone one from the "bottom of the deck" whatever the hell that's supposed to mean, but rather that Obama was more or less stating the obvious, and just pointing fun generally at the absurdity of the whole campaign ad.

Although, I did see it definitely as coded language. I heard Jeremiah Wright say in more than one sermon, one need only look at the currency to see who controlled the power--even back in Jesus' day, it was a picture of the Caesar. (Although no one knows, but Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver were minted on the half-dollar together from 1946-1951).

But, I was a bit concerned how Obama handled today's town hall in St. Petersburg. There were some black hecklers whom I felt he did about as best could be expected, but this black lady asked him why he hadn't spoken out against certain injustices toward blacks. And he responded that he had passed some racial profiling legislation back in Illinois and went on to say that he wouldn't side with African Americans everytime and that "when I don't you have the option to vote for somebody else or run yourself."

And he know good and damn well he didn't respond that way when I saw him with a mostly Jewish audience in the same state--now what's up with that!

(P.S. Jesse Jackson was right!)

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure that white people are becoming more racially astute, I think that was a pretty obvious one. The obvious coupled with a campaign where race has come to a forefront made it easy to pick up on, I think. said...

Hey there! is clear that many white people will cry foul whenever their racism is being brought up in conversation....they do not want anyone implying that racism is alive and well....

They will go on a rampage if anyone dares... let's remember how the media began their tactic with Dr. Wright that resulted in whites threatening to bomb his church....the white media orchestrated the entire slander attack....

Let's not sleep on these tactics....

We know how to do battle.

{raised fist}

jelana said...

I co-sign with you. As I read on another blog, when you play the race card, you are trying to get people of your same race to side with you.
Obama already has 90% of the black vote, so he has no need to play any race card!

Raving Black Lunatic