Friday, August 31, 2012

Race and Politics

I am about to touch one of those third rails that civilized people aren't supposed to discuss, and it was inspired by a story I read on an incident at the Republican National Convention.  A couple of attendees threw peanuts at a black camerawoman who works at CNN, and commented, "this is how we feed animals".  The attendees were promptly ejected, and condemnation ensued from all quarters.  As it should.  It was a terrible racial attack.  But the last paragraph of the article I read got me thinking.  According to "a recent poll", Obama has 94% support among black people, and his opponent, Mitt Romney, has 0%.  That's right, zero.  Now, I know Republicans have enjoyed scant support from the black community from as far back as I can remember, but I can't remember their support for a non-Democratic candidate being this low.

Well, other than perhaps 2008, when John McCain ran against....Barack Obama.  I'm not going to go on a goose chase Googling for 2008 poll ratings, but I'd venture to say that McCain had a similar rating amongst black people.  Mitt Romney actually spoke to the NAACP last month, and was booed numerous times.  Not very respectful, especially since it was a thoughtful gesture on his part, albeit futile.  Why is that level of meanness shown towards a presidential candidate, and it isn't regarded as racist by anybody?  Whereas, if a black person has a few peanuts tossed at them, or someone criticizes Obama in a particular way people come out of the woodwork to condemn it?  I think the unblinking support shown by the black community towards Obama, just because he is black, is the epitome of racism.

Just to give an example, one of the times that Romney was booed at his NAACP speech, was when he said that he would repeal Obamacare.  I would have wanted to ask anyone in that audience, how is Obamacare supposed to be beneficial for the black community?  Far from being universal health care, it is a giveaway to the private insurance companies.  It mandates that every American has health insurance, and for anyone who does not, they will be fined by the government.  In essence, Obamacare is a law that requires all Americans to pay "tribute" to private insurance companies.  With those facts, you'd think blacks especially would be up in arms about being forced under law to obtain private insurance.  But no, Obama's black just like them, he can do no wrong.

I am pretty much indifferent to the political process, and it is unlikely that I will vote again (outside of the library budget).  But I am hoping that Romney wins.  Say what you will about Bush II, but as long as he was in office, people were watching and paying attention.  Obama is as reactionary and corporate-friendly as they come, but because he is a black Democrat, most on the left feel that he can do no wrong.

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