Monday, January 21, 2008

“Unity is the great need of the hour.”

Barack Obama looks through the prison bars of former South African President Nelson Mandela's cell on Robben island in Cape Town, South Africa August 20, 2006.
REUTERS/Howard Burditt

Jules Crittenden citing the AP:

“If we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll acknowledge that our own community has not always been true to King’s vision of a beloved community,” he [Barack Obama] said to applause.

Obama suggested he’s allowed divisions to creep into his campaign in recent days. “Last week, it crept into the campaign for president, with charges and countercharges that served to obscure the issues instead of illuminating the critical choices we face as a nation. None of our hands are clean,” he said.

Senator Barack Obama laid a wreath at the tomb of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King after speaking at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. (Photo: Damon Winter/The New York Times)

"How can we get rid of racism?"

“Stop talking about it."

-Morgan Freeman to Mike Wallace, in an interview on 60 Minutes.

Articles of note:
Sen. Obama's Call for Unity are Not What They Seem by Dennis Prager (Question from Prager to Senator OBama: "Why are your left-wing positions any less divisive than President Bush's right-wing positions? And if you are so committed to uniting Americans, why did you vote against declaring English our national, i.e., our unifying, language? Without compelling answers, Sen. Obama's calls for American unity are no more than calls to unite around his politics and him." )

The Perils of Identity Politics by Christopher Hitchens (Best line: "People who think with their epidermis or their genitalia or their clan are the problem to begin with. ")

Money quote:
"What are we trying to "get over" here? We are trying to get over the hideous legacy of slavery and segregation. But Mr. Obama is not a part of this legacy. His father was a citizen of Kenya, an independent African country, and his mother was a "white" American. He is as distant from the real "plantation" as I am. How -- unless one thinks obsessively about color while affecting not to do so -- does this make him "black"?"
Actually, Hitchen's entire piece is a money quote. Read it. And pass it around.

Voters Should Reject Identity Politics by Ken Connor

Blog posts of note:
Of Gender and Race at Pondering Penguin

Hillary will not get a free pass for saying this a year ago in a Harlem church, January 17, 2006:

"when you look at the way the House of Representatives has been run, it has been run like a plantation, and you know what I'm talking about."

Race profiteer, and '04 Presidential hopeless, REVEREND (*snicker*) Al Sharpton, lent his credibility to her defense:

However, the host of the event where Clinton made her remarks Monday, activist Al Sharpton, disagreed with the criticism.

"I absolutely defend her saying it because I said it through the '04 elections," he said.

Oh, well if Al Sharpton defended her racist statement, because he's said similar racist statements in '04, then by God! We should give her a break.

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) waves to voters supporters at a campaign stop at the Sioux City Arts Center in Sioux City, Iowa, January 1,2008.
REUTERS/Brian Snyder

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Blogger J_G said...

Word, it's tough to talk about race issues because when you disagree with the democrat party line you are labeled a racist.

I work with blacks that have been given an opportunity to prove they can measure up and some do and some don't. One fine man I work with who is black came to our company later in life and had to learn a new skill. He puts everything he has into it and it's a good day when he works with me that day.

So many of the younger fellows look upon it as having to deal with the white people and they segregate themselves into their own click. I don't think that's what MLK had in mind when he said we would someday be judged by our character and not the color of our skin. The older fellow and I see things that way but the younger ones, not very often.

Philadelphia is particularly racially divided. The whites see the black community as the source of crime and the dependency on government handouts. You will still see people go crazy if a black moves into the neighborhood and all hell will break loose if they find out they are being moved there by the City under section 8 housing.

Young black males continue to kill each other at a record rate and whites scramble to move out of the city to get away from the public schools and the high murder rate where many times they are caught in the crossfire of warring drug gangs.

Nobody wants to discuss the root causes of the high crime rates such as single parent households and no strong father figure to teach and guide young boys. Then there is the education system that is reeling because they can't enough school supplies or enough teachers because most of the money meant for those purposes is siphoned off by political graft under the "spoils system".

No you can't talk calmly or objectively about these things in Philadelphia, you would be branded a racist and so the malady will continue with no end in the foreseeable future. It's too bad Philadelphia is where our country was founded but if you went to a high school and asked who George Washington was, they would tell you he was a white male slaveholder.

Sunday, January 20, 2008 11:31:00 PM  
Anonymous rockybutte said...


Thank you so much for the effort and passion you put into your work. I am truly impressed although I disagree with much of what you espouse.

j_g's comments seem to be sincere and carefully considered. The only comment of hers that I need to find fault with is her first: :"...when you disagree with the democrat party line you are labeled a racist."

My goodness, how misguided can she be? There is no "democrat party line" about race. Again, she is whining that she is a victim.

We need to discuss race and every other issue of consequence. No truth will emerge when we recklessly stereotype our chosen adversaries.

j_g recounts that she works with blacks that "...have been given an opportunity to prove they can measure up... How generous! Measure up to what? The expectations of the white community?

If I were black I would be enraged.

Monday, January 21, 2008 12:14:00 AM  
Blogger J_G said...

I rest my case.

Monday, January 21, 2008 12:32:00 AM  
Blogger Donald Douglas said...

Nice post.

I didn't agree with Hitchens' point about Obama. Another way to look at it is that's he's truly African-American. His family background has more recent ties to Africa than do blacks in America today. No, he can't claim to have had African ancestors who were slaves, but he can claim to be the model for a successful black American. He can move us past race.

I've been disappointed with all of the race-baiting this year. At a time when the overwhelming majority of blacks are middle class, and when we've got African-Americans leading in just about any industry, sport, or celebrity platform you can imagine, we're still getting bogged down in exacty the things MLK said we should be leaving behind.

Monday, January 21, 2008 6:26:00 AM  
Blogger Gayle said...

I believe that Jennifer (jg) meant "measuring up" to mean being able to bring themselves up to a place where they could actually hold a job and be helpful to others in their community. Sounds to me as though Rockeybutte purposely wants to misunderstand Jennifer's comment. Jennifer is not a bigot in any form of the word!

It's an excellent post, Wordsmith, and no... I'm not going to give Hllary a break! LOL!

Monday, January 21, 2008 7:34:00 AM  
Blogger J_G said...

Rocky and his ilk is the other leg of the problem. White liberals believe blacks can't measure up and they come up with social programs to perpetuate the problems of the black community. The white liberal as I come to figure out is the worst kind of racist.

At my job measuring up means being able to pass an initial Federal certification and a test every year including a physical and random drug testing because of the safety sensitive nature of our position. Three or four years ago they lowered the certification standards to passing the test to 80 perecent instead of 100 percent as it had been for the the preceding twenty or so years. They didn't do that to get more whites into the employment track. I'm pretty sick of being held to a high standard and "others" don't have to meet the same standards yet they expect the same pay and benefits. My friend that changed skills mid life feels the same way. He feels that when they lower standards for blacks his hard fought accomplishmnet is minimized by others that aren't familiar with his situation. They look at him as just another "must hire" and nothing could be further from the truth.

You can be outraged all you want rockybutt but the fact remains if people are held to high standards they will meet them. Unlike the racist liberal idea that because someone is black they couldn't possibly measure up to the standards that whites and other races are held to.

Monday, January 21, 2008 12:19:00 PM  
Anonymous rockybutte said...


Here's a challenge:

Try to get through a post without resorting to stereotypes about blacks, white liberals and democrats.


Here's what I find offensive about your post:

"...being able to bring themselves up to a place where they could actually hold a job and be helpful to others in their community."

Where they could actually(!) hold a job? Please try to imagine how that patronizing phrase would sound to the millions of hard-working African-Americans who persevere despite the systemic racism of white America.

Monday, January 21, 2008 2:16:00 PM  
Blogger J_G said...

Here's a challenge to you Rockybutt try to get through a post without sounding like a sterotypical liberal that believe blacks aren't capable of measuring up to set standards.

Monday, January 21, 2008 2:27:00 PM  
Blogger J_G said...

No blog rockybutt? You're opinions are worthless.

Monday, January 21, 2008 2:29:00 PM  
Anonymous rockybutte said...


Your bitterness and addiction to stereotyping make dialogue impossible.

Monday, January 21, 2008 5:13:00 PM  
Blogger J_G said...

My anger is for elitists like yourself rockybutt, I get along fine with all my black friends and neighbors because they all understand the same thing that I'm saying to you. It's white liberals like yourself that live in a make believe utopia world that are the problem for blacks that want to get ahead to live and work in a country that doesn't see color only competence.

Monday, January 21, 2008 6:45:00 PM  
Blogger The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Can't we all just get along? (~_^)

Monday, January 21, 2008 9:44:00 PM  

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