General Question

JonnyCeltics's avatar

Does it seem to anyone else that all of the sudden Obama's race is becoming a huge issue and that the McCain/Palin campaign has some explaining to do?

Asked by JonnyCeltics (2721points) October 28th, 2008

People are becoming so filled with hate and it scares the heck out of me—and for Obama’s life. For crying out loud…can’t we get past judging people on the color of their skin already? Like it has anything to do with running a country!?!

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30 Answers

El_Cadejo's avatar

pstttttt the short sentence should be the question and the long block of text should be in the description, you have it backwards.

JonnyCeltics's avatar

thx uberbatman – got it. Would you like to add anything else? :)

chicadelplaya's avatar

Yes, IT IS SCARY. I couldn’t agree with your thoughts more!

PupnTaco's avatar

No to the first, yes to the second.

dalepetrie's avatar

What? Obama is black?


First off, it’s not all of a sudden. Let’s face it, all that crap about Jeremiah Wright, all those emails about him being a closet Muslim….pretty much every internet rumor out there (Barack Obama is the #1 topic on Snopes top 25 internet rumors):

It was MID-JUNE when Jon Stewart coined the term Baracknophobia

We had to expect that the first black President was going to be met with racism.

However, I agree with you…we shouldn’t have to expect it from the other major party candidate.

I’ve written at length about how McCain and Palin have been whipping up racism with their attempts to paint Obama as too “different”, not “one of us”, not from the “real parts of America”, how he “pals around with terrorists”, and how since this has happened we’ve seen several videos of Palin rallies where the attendies were openly racist in their comments to interviewers. And as if “off with his head” and “kill him” weren’t enough, in the last 2 months, there have been two incidents where people were arrested for plotting to kill Obama. But I can’t possibly say it any better than this article:

Bottom line, some will never get beyond it. But with each passing generation it matters less and less to the masses. And we’ve finally arrived at a place where a black man can be President. Sure, a lot of crackers are scared to death, but they can’t possibly be more worried than I was when W took office, only difference is my fears were justified. When in 8 years they realize their fears were unfounded (assuming the Secret Service is at the top of its game unfortunately), racism will probably be akin to mental illness.

asmonet's avatar

Not all of a sudden, it’s pathetic.
People need to grow up and ignore what their parents might have said about race. We’re all humans and we all have brains, if you were taught hate, you need to have the guts to examine yourself.

I just hope that after he wins, since I feel it’s all but inevitable at this point, people won’t say any small insignificant screw up is because he’s black. That’s what I’m worried about.

JonnyCeltics's avatar

@ dalepetrie – sweet answer. I guess by my question…I meant that for a while there, during debates namely, that the “real issues” were actually being discussed, stump speeches or not. But now it’s back to somehow smearing Obama – Marxism, Barack being an Arab….just sh*tty stuff.

This election has the overtones that the last election had as undertones. In retrospect to the last election, in the end, people were calling those that lived on the coasts, the blue states – in the know, liberals, the educated, etc…you name it. Now it seems that even the media had identified themselves with these blue states, and yet I am more scared than ever that McCain has some strength that is yet to be seen.

All over the place there, I know….

Judi's avatar

What state do you live in?

JonnyCeltics's avatar

IL :) But I’m from MA, so I liberal am I…but not too bad. I’m objective at least…or the best I can be.

Judi's avatar

Just wondering if you were in one of those battle ground states where it’s getting really nasty.

Bri_L's avatar

My father in law still, with a strait face, looked me in the eye and said that Palin was more intelligent and experienced than Obama. He also believes that Obama changed his name despite that being put to rest.

There is a fraction of this population that will not give up on that. It is scary. I have shown my father in law point blank and his eyes glaze over and he shakes his head and says “no, no, no. It’s no good. What do we really know about him”.

It sickens me.

To be honest, if we had the time to go over the ENTIRE career of McCain the way they did Obama, you would see some skeletons that is for sure.

JonnyCeltics's avatar

Imagine how incredible it would be for the newest children of this country to grow up knowing that their President is black. Talk about a step in the right direction…

(I’m not saying this is the reason you ought to vote for Obama, but I just thought it a nice idea)

Bri_L's avatar

@JonnyCeltics – Lurve to that buddy

augustlan's avatar

I think no matter who wins this election, there is going to be some serious clean up needed between the two parties. In my adult lifetime, we’ve never been so divided, so into an us vs. them mentality. It saddens and sickens me. The best hope we have is that Obama wins, and lives through a successful term or two. The children growing up in that environment will have a much better understanding of race and it’s lack of importance.

Trustinglife's avatar

The good news is that Obama is EXACTLY the kind of person who would have that as a priority – healing the divide and bringing us together.

That’s what he’s talked about – and how he’s conducted himself – this whole campaign.

laureth's avatar

Since McPalin can’t harp on his “lack of experience” anymore, it seems as though they’re left with, ‘Well, at least we’re both lily-white! See, not scary!”

I’m so very afraid that we’ll have another Kennedy-type tragedy. :(

gooch's avatar

It’s a bunch of media induced propaganda. They report what they want to win you guys over. Remember the media is controled by only a few people.

deaddolly's avatar

Yes, it’s very sad. It’s such a generational thing—passed on down the line. I have hopes for the new generation to overcome it, slowly but surely. And, yes, it’d be cool for the kiddies to see a black person in the white house. It’d be cooler if there would be a black person and a woman!

dalepetrie's avatar

JohnnyCeltics – what you’re seeing is simply a reflection of the losing candidate grasping at any straw which might help him recover in the polls. When the race was close, issues could be discussed, McCain could say, let’s keep this one above the belt. But when you have no original or good ideas to run on, when you have nothing to sell that anyone would want to buy, you can only overinflate what you’ve got so much before people start to peel back the curtain and see the little man pulling the levers.

McCain’s only path to victory (and make no mistake about it, McCain is driven by a desire to become President and is willing to do just about anything to get there) is to tear down his opponent. That strategy is as old as politics itself…if you can’t make the voters like you, make them fear your opponent. That’s what swift boating was about 4 years ago. That’s what Willie Horton was about. That’s what the infamous Daisy ad was about. If you can’t win on policy, fear is the next best thing.

So, when you are making the electorate fear someone who also happens to be black, with an exotic name, you don’t really have to specifically even mention race, and it will just automatically go there. A savvy politician would take great pains to make sure that the fear they were building about their opponent would not generate into racial distrust. If you saw how Clinton conducted her campaign against Obama, say what you will about her, but she threw the kitchen sink at Obama, but managed to keep it by and large not about race until the very end when she made her hard working (white) Americans in Appalaicha argument. She was adept at keeping race out of the discussion in part because it was also a defensive position. Essentially, had she made the contest a referendum on race, the next shoe to drop would have been gender, and she already had a hard enough time fighting back the forces of sexism without having to confront it head on.

McCain has no such worries. He’s the rich old white man from a priveledged background that the major parties always force down our throats. The only -ism he has to worry about is ageism, and as long as he’s younger than Reagan, it’s far less of a handicap than being black in a Presidential campaign…there IS precedent unlike for Obama.

Essentially McCain needed to adopt an emergency strategy, because the first five he pulled out were not working, he placed a bet that fear would trump hope. And the fear he’s most familiar with, the fear that resonates with his base, is fear of the unknown…the fear of “otherness”. If you read that one article I posted, you know all about that fear. Unfortunately, “otherness” for a black candidate might as well be “blackness”.

One interesting aside I’ll leave you with here. The next time you see or hear a story about what’s going on out there on the campaign trail, and they play a clip of McCain going after Obama at a rally, and then a clip of Obama going after McCain at a rally, or vice versa, listen to the crowd reaction. When McCain says that Obama will raise your taxes, the crowd erupts in BOOOOOOOO’s. When Obama says that McCain had not managed to come up with a single idea as to how to move this economy forward/how to differentiate himself from Bush, his crows CHEERS! Both negative attacks against their opponents…COMPLETELY different reactions. That is systematic, that is the difference you get when you run one campaign that targets fear and another that targets issues.

wundayatta's avatar

Did you hear that McCain is telling his supporters to bring their guns with them to the polls?

augustlan's avatar

@Daloon: WTF? Do you have a link for that?

Judi's avatar

a link?

wundayatta's avatar

Oh dear. That was supposed to be facetious. An indictment of scurrilous rumors, by being a scurrilous rumor. Mudslinging. Yellow journalism. All that stuff I learned in high school way back when.

Trustinglife's avatar

Damn – I believed you, Daloon. Does that say more about me or McCain?

Bri_L's avatar

I think it says a teensy bit about daloon.


augustlan's avatar

Sheesh…in all the excitement, I never asked Dave/PupandTaco what PPOR is!

Trustinglife's avatar

@Augustlan, I googled it and found this link with some possibilities.

“Provide proof or retract” seems to be my best guess. Makes sense given the context.

wundayatta's avatar

I’m just annoyed as shit about all the crap McCain supporters put out that anyone with half a brain could see is a scurrilous lie. The fact that so many believe or keep on passing this shit around really bothers me.

I am happy to start a counter-rumor, and seriously, I didn’t make it up entirely. I thought I heard it on the radio, but when I went back to check, there was nothing about it. So it must have been wishful thinking.

And even if it were true, what would it mean? I kept puzzling over that. Would they have to show their guns? Is it to intimidate non-McCain voters? How would it work?

augustlan's avatar

@Trustinglife: Thanks. That makes perfect sense.

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