A few weeks ago, Old Punk, a contributor to the InstaPunk blog, wrote this:
I don't hate black people. I can't pretend to be color-blind because absolutely nothing in my culture will allow me to be. I admire Thomas Sowell, Duke Ellington, Roberto Clemente, Muhammed Ali, Alexandre Dumas, Sidney Poitier, Denzel Washington, Count Basie, Tiger Woods, and Bill Cosby. There are many others but that's a sampling of the famous folks whose courage, genius, character, and achievements I would be proud if I could get anywhere in the vicinity of. The bald truth of the matter is that they're better than I am, and it doesn't arouse a flicker of racial feeling in me to acknowledge it. They have enriched and elevated my own experience of life.
On the other hand, I am sick to death of black people as a group. The truth. That is part of the conversation Obama is asking for, isn't it? I live in an eastern state almost exactly on the fabled Mason-Dixon line. Every day I see young black males wearing tee shirts down to their knees -- and jeans belted just above their knees. I'm an old guy. I want to smack them. All of them. They are egregious stereotypes. It's impossible not to think the unthinkable N-Word when they roll up beside you at a stoplight in their trashed old Hondas with 19-inch spinner wheels and rap recordings that shake the foundations of the buildings. It's like a broadcast dare: Go ahead! Call me a nigger! And then I'll cap your ass.
Here's the dirty secret all of us know and no one will admit to. There ARE niggers. Black people know it. White people know it. And only black people are allowed to notice and pronounce the truth of it. Which would be fine. Except that black people are not a community but a political party. They can squabble with each other in caucus but they absolutely refuse to speak the truth in public. And this is the single biggest obstacle to healing the racial divide in this country ...
Needless to say, a blinding shitstorm filled the blogosphere over that one. But Cassandra at Villainous Company noted a remarkable resemblance between Old Punk's rant and this: (profanity-laden and NSFW)
Cassandra rightly pointed out that Chris Rock's comedic rant would never, ever be considered racism, "by virtue of the speaker's skin color."
The problem here is troubling. Blacks are allowed to say certain things:
If he were white, [Obama] once bluntly noted, he would simply be one of nine freshmen senators, almost certainly without a multimillion-dollar book deal and a shred of celebrity.
But when whites say the same things ...
"If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position," Ferraro told a local California newspaper last week.
"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," Ferraro said.
... they are accused of racism.
It gets worse. As a general rule, no one is allowed to criticize anyone with darker skin without a public excoriation. That goes for whites criticizing blacks, whites criticizing Latinos, Asians criticizing blacks, Latinos criticizing blacks, etc. And do I have to mention the long-standing animosity between light-skinned and dark-skinned African Americans?
If we cannot talk to one another without getting hung up on each other's skin color, then no dialog on race will ever be possible.
How can you trust someone when they tell you repeatedly that they believe that you are an evil person? How do you trust someone when they tell you repeatedly that you are responsible for all the troubles in their life? How do you trust someone to manage an institution when they repeatedly tell you that they believe the institution an inherently corrupt failure?
I think this is the core problem that leftist African-American politicians face when trying to gain broad support from white Americans.
Most leftist African-American politicians build their careers preaching a racialist doctrine which holds the selfish and evil actions of white Americans responsible for all the ills of the African-American community. Although it is expressed in passive voice in such phrases as “America is a racist country” or “institutional racism”, white Americans read the message very clearly: the aggregated individual evil choices of white Americans are the cause of the nation’s problems.
The vast majority of white Americans believe racism a serious moral failing. They recognize the harm done by racism in the past and believe that racism violates the American ideals of individuality and merit reward. They view the accusation of racism as a very serious matter. When a politician casually and repeatedly accuses them of committing such an evil act, they notice.
This is the witches brew that has poisoned American race relations for the last forty years. Dr. Martin Luther King left us exactly forty years ago, and ever since, racial "leaders" with an axe to grind have disregarded his non-violent and non-political approach to social justice, and have riled up their constituencies with every kind of vile conspiracy theory imaginable. Rev. Jeremiah Wright is only the tip of the iceberg.
Earlier this week, Daphna Ziman, founder of Children Uniting Nations, published this chilling letter. Ms. Ziman, who is Jewish, was invited to Los Angeles accept an award from the Kappa Aplha Psi fraternity (an African-American organization).
After I spoke and thanked the fraternity and their members, Rev. Eric Lee, pres. and CEO of Southern Christian Leadership Conference of greater Los Angeles, was introduced as the key note speaker. He began his speech by thanking Jesus for Obama, who is going to be the leader of the world. He continued by referring to other leaders Like Dr. King,being that this was the moment of celebrating Dr. King's spirit on the anniversary of his death, and Malcolm X.It was right after the mention of Malcolm X that he looked right at me and started talking about the African American children who are suffering because of the JEWS that have featured them as rapists and murderers. He spoke of a Jewish Rabbi, and then corrected himself to say "What other kind of Rabbis are there, but JEWS". He told how this Rabbi came to him to say that he would like to bring the AA community and the Jewish community together. " NO, NO, NO,!!!!" he shouted into the crowd, we are not going to come together. "The Jews have made money on us in the music business and we are the entertainers, and they are economically enslaving us"
He continued as to how now the salvation has come and the gates have open for African Americans to come together behind Barack Obama, because now is the time to show them.(meaning the Jews). He continued to speak about ' White supremacy' vs the talents and visionaries in the core of African Americans. He demeaned being given freedom, by saying "To what?" to a country that kills women and children.
I could no longer be polite and sit in front of the crowd, so I walked out.
Perhaps the candidacy of Barack Obama will be beneficial in that it will convince more of these kooks that it is safe to come out of the woodwork and spout their hatred in public. I believe that the more we hear these things, the greater the likelihood is that we will eventually have to deal with them.
But on the other hand, this is very disappointing. And it will hurt Barack Obama, because -- before the Rev. Wright incident -- a considerable number of white Americans bought into the Obama campaign's portrait of their man as a "uniter" who had disconnected himself from race hustlers like Rev. Jesse Jackson and Rev. Al Sharpton. A sizable portion of this nation was ready to embrace a non-white presidential candidate, and was excited about the progress that such a decision would exemplify. Now, as more and more ordained bigots begin to glom onto Obama as their messiah, it seems clear to me that many whites are going to doubt his ability to reshape race relations in America.