Monday, October 20, 2008

The Blacks Are Plotting

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.


Queers United said...

Pat Buchanan has already thrown in the race factor on Chris Matthew's show. It would have also been a perfect time for Pat Buchanan to come out and admit he is a racist nazi douchebag.

Queers United said...

In case you haven't seen the clip

SunlessNick said...

After seeing these attacks today, one thought that crossed my mind was "so what if that is a reason?"

I mean, if the likes of Buchanan want Obama's race to be so important, why not turn it round on them? Why should a black man, or a black woman, not consider that it could be good for America to have a black president?

frau sally benz said...

There are two things going on here that I think are equally important. The first is what you point out about whites never being accused of only endorsing a white candidate because of race.

The other is that white politicians that endorse Obama are pretty much ignored because they can't use race as a reason. In the past couple of weeks, a number of Republicans have voiced their support of Obama, but not many make the headlines. I've started relying on blogs for updates on these endorsements. What exactly would they say about these people?


That’s right Rush Limbaugh - it’s all part of the 30-year conspiracy by "angry blacks" that you mentioned last week! The Negroes are taking over!


It’s wondrous just how racially divided this country STILL is. And it seems to take moments like what we’re witnessing currently (the election specifically) to illuminate this fact. There’s clearly a problem here that needs to be aired out and squashed - if that is even at all possible - otherwise, I fear that, a time will come when hatred across racial lines will lead to certain violence and more…

Race is still very much the elephant in the room that America refuses to fully acknowledge and discuss.

As for Limbaugh and company, it'll be easy to dismiss him as not much more than a shock-jock - Howard Stern minus the salacity - ensuring that his wallet remains plump!

But, that he has an audience of 13.5 million loyal weekly listeners nationwide is scary.

As Election Day draws closer, I won’t be surprised to see violent breakouts in parts of the country, because you can guarantee that these kinds of coded, hate-filled messages will only intensify in frequency and virulence.

cooper said...

My feeling on this are even if for some reason one felt all things were equal ( I don't of course), if I were black I'd vote for an African American. If all things were equal I may have voted for Hilary but they were not satisfactory for me, but if they were I would have taken the woman. Identity politics is, and has always been, a significant part of US politics, so with all things being equal that endorsement would be valid.

That was clearly not the case however for General Powell, who did no in any way feel the contest was equal.
Given the fact he gave substantial reasoning for his endorsement, some of it very similar to the reasoning given by the many white ideological conservatives who have jumped ship ( Buckley, Hitchens, Frank Luntz, Michael Smerconish, Chuck Hagels wife as his surrogate, The Chicago Trib editorial board whichhas never in it's histroy endorsed a Democrat, and so on), if Powell is making this decision based on Race what pray tell is the excuse for the rest of the crowd?

If nothing else shows how much racism is still a factor in this country this is it.

Miss Molly said...

When I listened to Powell's announcement, I was very moved by this man's maturity of spirit, presence and intelligence. His decision was based on a careful, reasoned weighing of each candidate. I hope to attain his wisdom of speech one day.

So how the f$#@ can people say that he's voting based on race? (Don't answer that, it's a rhetorical question.)

T.Allen-Mercado said...

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.

This is such a powerfully accurate statement. I can't imagine the tremendous pressure to phrase eveything just so. To have to strategically plan every aspect of my career go forward based on a stance that, while I firmly believe in his reasoning-will always be seen as what you just mentioned here.

Anonymous said...

Thanks much for the clip.

I am so starved for actual political debate. It was great to see an interview where both the interviewee and interviewer were able to carry on a conversation without resorting to talking points or screaming.

Danyell said...

How about this: Powell is an intelligent, sensitive person who feels he'll sleep better endorsing a candidate that may do some good after Bush ruined America?


Look, I won't pretend that race doesn't play some factor. Just like how I might not have supported Hillary as much if not for her gender. But those things are more like sprinkles on top. Like, "Oh, this candidate really backs social programs and education AND is a woman?!" or "Oh, this candidate has a real plan to fix the economy and non-rich Americans, a real exit plan for Iraq and runs of a platform of tolerance and understanding AND is Black?!" If Obama were the exact same candidate as a White man, I'd still support him. But the truth of the matter is that your gender and ethnicity do play a part in your experiences and understanding of the world. And the idea of breaking apart the rich-White-dude merry-go-round of presidential politics to too exciting to pass up.

But, going back to Colin Powell being intelligent, I'm sure he liked Obama anyway. But being able to vote for another promising Black politician is an added bonus. So what's the problem?