Big news last weekend was Oprah's big deal for Obama. I'm afraid I'm not enthused. People, isn't it time we got away from this racism? Here was Oprah saying, essentially, that she's supporting Obama because he's black. And there's much being said about Hillary being a woman.
I'm not impressed by either of them. If they were white Protestant males, I wouldn't be impressed with them. (I am not now nor have I ever been impressed with Jimmy Carter.) I don't like their views, I don't trust Hillary as a person. I don't want either one or anyone like them to be our President. (For the record, I wouldn't object at all to either Colin Powell or Condoleeza Rice as President.)
But that's not what this rant--er, post--is about. Should Mayor Giuliani be boosted by Italian-Americans? Should Senator McCain be touted as the candidate of the white male population? NO!!!!!! RACIST!!!!!!!
But where are the cries of racism following Oprah's blatant statements?
My favorite story about ethnic politicking: LaGuardia was running against a candidate who was Jewish, and who told the Jewish voters that LaGuardia couldn't represent them. LaGuardia challenged the Jew to a public debate--on the condition it be held in Yiddish. He knew something his opponent didn't: LaGuardia, the non-Jew, spoke fluent Yiddish; the Jewish opponent didn't.
The point I like most about this story is that LaGuardia shot down the appeal to racism. Can we PLEASE see racism shot down more often, in politics and out?
Meanwhile, I predict that Oprah's racist support will hurt or kill Obama's campaign. People who have been trying to see him as an individual and evaluate him as candidate without regard to race are going to see him now as black. That is, as a black person being black and running as the representative of the black population, i.e. as a racist candidate.
And Oprah is in jeopardy too. People have now seen a different Oprah, one who appeals to race, who supports a candidate because he's black, and touts him as the candidate of the black population.
Can you say "backlash"?
And one other point: Oprah is only the most recent and highest-profile I've heard cite Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and then act totally opposite of what he dreamed: "...that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. That is NOT what Oprah is proclaiming!
Let's start looking at the "content of their character"! Are you hearing me, Oprah? Are you hearing me, Michael Vick? Are you hearing me, all you rappers? Are you hearing me, Hillary?