It came as no surprise to anyone when Colin Powell endorsed Obama on Meet The Press.
The only question in my mind was how long it would take for it to be labelled a black conspiracy. Everyone knows that blacks don't think independently of each other. In fact, two black people engaged in conversation are always plotting the best way to over throw the man. We are only concerned about personal gain and could not possibly have an interest in politics for the sake of trying to make the world a better place.
From Politico..."Secretary Powell says his endorsement is not about race," Limbaugh wrote in an e-mail. "OK, fine. I am now researching his past endorsements to see if I can find all the inexperienced, very liberal, white candidates he has endorsed. I'll let you know what I come up with."
ummm BUSH and look where that left the world.
I only have one question really. Why is it that whites who have been voting for white people since the US became a country were not engaging in racial solidarity voting, and a black man endorsing another black man is? When white people vote of course it is about serious issues; the economy, the war, education and health care. When blacks vote, it is all about helping a brotha out. No, no racism evident in that kind of thinking at all.
On some level I feel sorry for Powell. When he was supporting Bush, he was the house slave that whites loved and blacks looked at in askance. Now that he is supporting Obama he is conspiratorial nigger to whites, and a man that is down with his peeps to blacks. No matter what decision this man makes on any issue the colour of his skin will always be used decode what the real impetus is. Much like Obama, Powell cannot escape the messages that blackness encodes on his body.
This is something that both he and Obama have in common. No matter their achievements they will be looked at as black men first; and are therefore forced to bear the weight of the social construction that comes with black masculinity. The Rush Limbaughs of the world will huff and puff but their bias is obvious to all who understand how racial politics really work. Men like Powell and Obama are problematic when they chose to speak with their own voices because in the history of the US, leadership has been associated with white masculinity.
Politics has always been a boys club but it has been a club that is ripe with hierarchy. To gain and maintain access one traditionally has had to be white and rich. Obama with his working class background and black body is an affront to everything that we have always associated with leadership. Now that Powell, their favourite go to man has chosen to endorse him, the boys club is closing ranks to protect what they view as a threat to their hegemony.
Watching the ways in which Obama and Powell are treated by white pundits only reaffirms that blackness continues to be an issue in American society. No matter how many tributes there are to men like Martin Luther King, there is nothing post about racism. Though white men would like us to imbibe this lie wholeheartedly the lived experience of people of colour daily reifies the racial discord.