I posted the original article and commentary about Michelle and Whitey almost a year ago. It’s garnered quite a bit of interest.
Barack Obama is the man of the hour in US and World Politics. He is the President-elect. How does Michelle feel about her comments now about bars being set and raised now. She was wrong then and she is wrong now. The bar was set high on purpose. No one should be handed the office of President of the United States of America. Not Barack Obama. Not anyone else. (Not even George W. Bush for all of you who will zone in on Dubya.) Barack Obama has won the election. The American people have won this election.
My feeling on this issue is that many American Blacks do not see and experience America as it is today. Too many experience their lives through the past. They see America through the prism of America 20 and 30 years ago. Many Black Americans are living with the racist history and past of America as if it is a friend or a childhood blanket that they can’t quite let go. Before anyone starts, I realize that racism, discrimination and prejudice exist today. Yet, it is nowhere near as common as it was 30, 20 even 10 years ago.
Also, those problems exist on all sides of the racial/color divide. I’ve witnessed Black racism towards Whites, Asians and Hispanics. I’ve witnessed White racism towards the same. I’ve witnessed Asian racism towards Blacks, Whites and Hispanics. I’ve seen these people all practice racism in one form or another against Arabs and others as well.
So what? It exists. You live your life and work around it. It will always exists.
There are extreme liberal prejudices against Christians. There are extreme conservative prejudices against Homosexuals. Many folks are prejudiced against Muslims due to the dangers posed by Islamic Extremism.
It’s there. It will always be there. Tough.
Growing up. I was discriminated against because I was poor. When I was 19 and in Germany in the Army, I was jumped by 8 Black guys for the sole reason of the color of my skin. I’ve not spent my life being resentful for this treatment. I don’t spend my days and nights talking about “the Man” and his desire to “get me” and “hold me down.” I go out and live and try to improve my lot in life. In spite of the Challenges and sometimes because of the Challenges that have come my way.
Obama will become the 44th President of the United State of America on January 20th, 2009. This would not have been possible without the vote of White Americans. This seems to be a fact that many Black Americans overlook. The election of Barack Obama is a victory for all Americans. Not Black Americans or racially mixed Americans. All Americans. It plainly illustrates that much of White America has moved past the old racist notions that held us back as a Nation.
My question is this:
HAVE BLACK AMERICANS MOVED PAST RACISM?
Are they willing to do so? Will they? Or will we still have to hear about “Whitey” or “those damn Crackers” or the “evil White man.” Will White America get credit in the Black Community for looking past color in this election?
This is one of the roles that Michelle Obama must take on as First Lady. The role of healer of a nation. Will she aid in healing the racial divide or will she exacerbate the divide? This nation needs a healer. I hope she steps up. We have a chance in this nation to move past pettiness and prejudice. We have been afforded a unique opportunity. Let us hope that a leader will step forth and carry us forward to that day about which Doctor King and so many others have dreamed for so long. May we free ourselves of these chains which have held us down as a people for so long. May people put down their hates and prejudices and look instead to the individual heart and character of a person. This is a possibility.
I so tire of racism. The conversation itself is wearying.
Let’s move past this America. Let us finally free our national soul of this disease of the mind and spirit.
Michelle Obama. Lead us on to the future.