Thunderpig’s Mirror

Obama Blew It

Posted by Thunder Pig on March 20, 2008

Tim Rutten’s column, “Obama’s Lincoln moment” and The Times editorial, “Obama on race” both miss the mark.

In my considered judgment as a race and civil rights specialist, I would say that Barack Obama’s “momentous” speech on race settled on merely “explaining” so-called racial differences between blacks and whites — and in so doing amplified deep-seated racial tensions and divisions. Instead of giving us a polarizing treatise on the “black experience,” Obama should have reiterated the theme that has brought so many to his campaign: That race ain’t what it used to be in America.

He should have presented us a pathway out of our racial boxes and a road map for new thinking about race. He should have depicted his minister, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., as a symbol of the dysfunctional angry men who are stuck in the past and who must yield to a new generation of color-blind, hopeful Americans and to a new global economy in which we will look on our neighbors’ skin color no differently than how we look on their eye color.

In fact, I’d say that considering the nation’s undivided attention to this all-important speech, which gave him an unrivaled opportunity to lift us out of racial and racist thinking, Obama blew it.

Source: Michael Myers, writing in the LA Times
Hat Tip: Mark Levin

I especially agree with his concluding paragraph…I’ll steal a couple of sentences from it here:

We can’t be united as a nation if we continue to think racially and give credence to racial experiences and differences based on ethnicity, past victim status and stereotypical categories. All of these prejudices surrounding tribe-against-tribe are old-hat and dysfunctional — especially the rants of ministers, of whatever skin color or religion, who appeal to our base prejudices and to superstitions about our supposed racial differences.

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