Friday, August 08, 2008

What, Me Worry?

Here's what passes for an Op-Ed from CNN that I've been meaning to comment on for a while now. If you're too lazy to click on the link, 'cause that's, like, totally a lot of work, it's titled "Could An Obama Presidency Hurt Black Americans?" What? How could an Obama presidency hurt black Americans? Read on, faithful reader:

Paul Street, author of the forthcoming book "Barack Obama and the Future of American Politics," says Obama risks becoming an Oval Office version of talk-show host Oprah Winfrey. She and former Secretary of State Colin Powell are African-American figures whose popularity allows some white Americans to congratulate themselves for not being racist, he says

"They're cited as proof that racism is no longer a significant barrier to black advancement and interracial equality," Street said...

When Obama became the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee in June, many African-Americans cried because they said they never thought they would live to see such a day. Vendors soon started selling T-shirts of Obama's portrait pasted alongside King in Walgreens stores and at online stores.

Yet there are a few political commentators who warn African-Americans that an Obama victory could be twisted to suppress the push for racial equality. Most of these commentators are African-American, but they also include white, Latino and conservative pundits.

These commentators say that there is a subliminal appeal to Obama's presidential candidacy that has been ignored. Obama doesn't just represent change; he represents atonement for America's ugly racial past for others, they say.

So what's their point? That we SHOULDN'T vote for Obama in November? Of course not! Here's their point: "Hey, White America! Even after you've elevated a black man to the most powerful position in the country, don't think we still don't get to complain about race relations!"

Don't you worry, little guy. We would never take that away from you.

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