Can We Just Leave Race Out Of It?
It gets to be a little bit frustrating, to me, that since President Obama has taken the Oath of the Office of the President, that nearly every issue that concerns his presidency winds up somehow becoming attached to the color of his skin. The BP oil spill disaster is no exception recently as Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post made reference to an article headline by Matt Drudge which referred to President Obama's "ass kick" remark as "street." In Capehart's article he basically stated that black men cannot display anger without being considered just another "angry black man," or without being considered to be "threatening" or "menacing."
Even recent comments by left wing nut (by my own personal assessment of course, feel free to disagree) commentator Bill Maher, who said, "When we elected a black president, I thought we were getting a black president," is disconcerting, and I think a bit offputting, off topic, and irrelevant to any issues that we face in this country today.
First of all, by my recollection we elect Americans to the highest office in our land. That should be first and foremost in our mindsets. Sure, we can hang on to our personal ideologies. We can be republican, or democrat, or whatever. That's a very different thing. At the end of the day all Americans are looking to elect to the presidency someone who can be a full-on defender of the American dream, of freedom and democracy, and especially someone who will vehemently and unwaveringly defend, administer, and protect the Constitution of the United States.
The oil spill is an issue. The action, or inaction for that matter, by this president is an issue. How President Obama responds to the clean-up efforts, and to BP oil executives, and how he reacts to concerns by affected industries such as the fisheries, and how he responds to environmental concerns, are all part of the issue.
Not one single part of this issue is about being black.
The president did say he wanted to know who's ass to kick, and while I agree that I don't necessarily view his wording as having been presidential to the degree that I would prefer, nor do I agree with the way that he is handling the BP oil spill issue, including making his marvelously flippant remark in response to his critics that he is not acting swiftly enough, nor appropriately regarding the oil spill, that "he cannot suck the oil through a straw," I do not in any way attribute the color of his skin to his inability to handle the issue. Nor do I feel that these were remarks that only a black man may have made.
Race just has a way of getting in the way of any real discussion on the issues. It gets in the way of real and credible analysis of the president's job performance. It's as bad as when we constantly called President Bush a buffoon (which, by the way, would be construed much differently if Barack Obama were referenced to this particular primate). Whenever one reverts to "he's just an idiot and that's why he's doing what he's doing" it's as disruptive to the debate as the race card is, and so I'm making no exceptions here. Neither case is relevant to the issues.
I don't mind having a debate all day long about why I think President Obama has gotten it wrong about the health care issue. We can debate all day long why I think President Obama has gotten it wrong about the Arizona immigration bill. We can debate all day long whether President Obama is a left winger, whether he's effective or not, whether he's a socialist or not. But I don't want race entered into the discussion. It's going to come in from time to time, I understand that. But not at every turn. Not as a basis for an argument in support of the president—those people simply don't like the fact that he's black and so they are going to disagree with everything he does.
We have serious problems to be solved right now. The BP oil spill is but one in a very long list of other issues which includes the growing tensions between Iran and Israel, the fact that we still have military operations in the Middle East, and the issue of a very real threat that still exists from potential terrorist acts in our country.
Of course, we have the pending economic issues as well, which are no small thing by any measure.
To me it doesn't matter whether we have a blue president so long as he can conduct the work of the American people effectively, be an advocate for and an ambassador to American culture, democracy and freedom, and most of all just be our president.
The left wing media and left wing political pundits need to just shut up about race so we can get on with talking about what's really the problem with getting things done.
More On the Oil Spill and President Obama
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