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In Response to the First Two Paragraphs of T Augustus' "Would You Vote For Obama Again?" by Merwin

Updated on December 5, 2010

I only read his first two paragraphs, and granted he wrote the Hub 14 months ago...

T Augustus in his second paragraph wrote...

"Why is this question being posed? I never heard anyone ask if I’d vote for Reagan again, or if I’d vote for Bush again, and I never heard anyone ask if I’d vote for Clinton again. I make the last distinction to state the point that it’s not a Republican/Democrat issue at hand; it’s a black/white issue."

I included the above excerpt, and then wrote the next few paragraphs at the end of the lengthy comment section (which I also did not read)...

You did not read or hear anyone asking that question concerning those other Presidents... I assume, only because you did not care one way or another what was being said.

I heard those questions in regard to all those Presidents.

I agree with your comments (though I stopped reading at the end of your second paragraph) about Bush, he was lame at best and criminal at worst.

I deeply disagree with your "its a black/white issue" I am a white conservative that has made the "write in" vote for Alan Keyes three Pres. elections in a row.

I also would have voted for him if he were a Democrat, also removing it from a partisan issue, at least for me.

Now... 14 months after your having wrote the Hub, and, after having read my comment, I have to ask... would you vote for Obama again..?

End of comment to T Augustus' Hub.

I never really think that racism or any other form of stupid bigotry will end on this side of Glory. I wish it would, but for me and many others it will simply remain a great and wonderful, hope and "dream", inspirational and uniquely delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King wherein he said we should be judged not by the color of our skin but the content of our character.


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    • T_Augustus profile image

      T_Augustus 7 years ago from Detroit, MI

      "I do think that we are all racists by degree, and I mean no insult to anyone by my declaration. I further declare that we all discriminate and we all are prejudgers or prejudiced, and again, by degree."

      That's heavy. I tend to agree with you on that. I think "racist" or "racsism" is more of a result of extreme or exaggerated levels of prejudice, but yes - we all have prejudices of some well we should. It's only natural. Not always against other races either, there are prejudices of others within our race, or against gender, sexual preference, fashion sense... all kinds of things.

      I have more I'd like to say, but I'm just too darned tired right now. Good response though.

    • CoauthorU profile image

      CoauthorU 7 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA


      I can only say that I must have totally misunderstood your measurement of racism, for it was by what I understood to be your measurement, that I considered it appropriate to use the term in reference to you. I am sorry for my misstep and I shall re-read everything.

      Before I do allow me to further illustrate my actual position on racism as an act of apology and a bid for forgiveness.

      I do think that we are all racists by degree, and I mean no insult to anyone by my declaration. I further declare that we all discriminate and we all are prejudgers or prejudiced, and again, by degree.

      I started a job, now some twenty years ago, where I met a man who, when I met him seemed very amiable. As the job progressed and he became more comfortable with me, he began saying things that so shocked me that I declared aloud, enough for many in the muster room to hear, "Oh... you are a bigot!" And, he did not seem insulted at all, in replying with a smile I might add, "Yes I am!" I simply declare things as I read them, and I did not intend to offend him at the time. Needless to say our budding friendship was over.

      Here my point and hopefully the bulk of my illustration. If you exhibited what I thought (again by your measurement) what I esteemed as racism, it would in my measurement be mild, almost indiscernible. I did not intend it as an insult.

      Again, no offense was meant, I feel we are all at least a very little on the racist side, we show some color sensitivity that we do not have to be careful of with most of those from our own race, and that is one of the mildest forms of racism... at least as I see it.

      And again I shall re-read our exchange to see what land mine I must have stepped on... my bad.

    • T_Augustus profile image

      T_Augustus 7 years ago from Detroit, MI

      Thanks for your response, though it is a tad misleading. I will first say that I didn't call you a racist (or name of any kind) and I don't appreciate you calling me one. I didn't say anything "racist", in my opinion, but if you want to play that card - enjoy that stance without substance. I didn't make any statement that painted "all White people" or any other people in any light, I just made a statement TO Black people who were faced with "the first question" (I'll get back to that). Why is the statement "I have encouraged Black people..." interpreted as racist to you? Is encouraging people to vote how they please an act of racism in your definition? To call me a racist because of that threatens to discredit the positive things I said about you as an individual. In fact, I state in my hub that I was asked "the first question" by Blacks as well as Whites, so...anyway, it's not uncommon that my willingness to discuss race is met with ignorant responses like "you're a racist" from White people when we're not on the same page, or "you're a sell out" from Black people when we are. It's just that when I first read your hub, I expected better from you.

      Secondly, I'd like to point out both quotes that you paraphrased me on is not in reference to "the second question", but instead to "the first question". If you read my entire hub you should know that I made reference to "Would you vote for Obama again?" as being the second question that I found unique to this president, but the first question was "Are you voting for him because he's Black?" I also pointed out that I was asked that by both Black and White people alike. That said, if you re-read the quote you paraphrased and know that I'm referring to the "first question", can you possibly understand my ire or offense? Can you read that statement you quoted of me and see it as something other than racism? Can you consider a race of people constantly being faced with the question "Are you just voting for him because he's Black?" and understand why I would encourage them to ignore that and vote as they see fit. It is YOUR vote and not the vote of those asking you that ignorant question - a question I was never asked in reference to any other candidate. While it is a lot more overt of a question of "the Black vote" as it relates to race, it is the reason the second question takes the same tone in more subtle fashion...especially when being faced with it over and over again in such a short time.

      Even the second quote you paraphrased me on is in reference to "the first question", which is why I asked "Are you voting for McCain because he's White?" in response. Your answer to that question points out the problem I have with your response to my comment - you seem to have taken it too personal, when my hub had nothing to do with you individually.

      Lastly, I never said no one ever complained about Bush. Why would I say that when I am an example of someone that did?

    • CoauthorU profile image

      CoauthorU 7 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

      Okay I finally got around to this, my apologies...

      After having read your entire Hub, I can say the first two or three paragraphs portrayed your position, I think much better, than what followed.

      I may be wrong of course... but it seems on the one hand that you are declaring how stupid it is for the whites to make it about skin and then you make comments like...

      "I have never asked “the question” because I see no value in "the question". Instead I have encouraged Black people to not be swayed by that question and vote however they pleased…even if it meant they didn’t vote at all. You have the right to vote, but more importantly you have the right to choose, and if you choose not to vote – you ARE exercising your right. It seems our actions always have to be questioned. If we don’t vote we’re insulted because we didn’t vote, if we do vote people insult our reasons why we vote the way we do, they say we vote name recognition or because “he’s Black”. We can’t even make a movie without everyone jumping up saying “What kind of message is he sending?” or “What is he trying to say?” Just leave us the hell alone! Let us vote how we want to, why we want to, and just worry about you and your intentions! Quite frankly, it’s none of your frigging business anyway!"

      "Instead I have encouraged Black people..."

      No my friend I am not naive to racism... neither the white man's racism or your apparent racism. One does not have to look far to find racism, or any other brand of ism, it seems to be clinging to everything and everyone.

      I wish to make clear a couple of things. The first time that I can remember clearly, the election question... "would you vote for him again?" was part of some kind of publication illustrating the Presidential approval ratings, and this, in regard to the Carter administration as the earliest I remember.

      I realized after having read more of your Hub, that you were not referring to having been exposed to the general publication of this question... but to a direct question, asked specifically of you, and because your shared race. I misunderstood your premise... my bad.

      My Hub should shed light on what I thought was the premise and on the merit of that I remain standing in honest defense.

      Alan Keyes is to my knowledge the first black Presidential contender. Which suggests to me, that for you, it is not a skin thing.

      You did not hear any complaints about Bush while he was in office..? I am assuming you meant from his own party..? I make this assumption for a couple of reasons; my base assumption that you must be a Liberal and therefore not paying that much attention to the rhetoric coming from the Conservatives or Independents. And/or you must have been distracted by other things more important to you, to pay much attention to the lesser intellects found in parties not your own.

      Regardless... there were many Conservatives who were not in lock step with the Senior and Junior Bush boys and there cronies like Mr. Halliburton himself, Dick Cheney. Over the years I heard many complaints and as mentioned I attempted to "write in" elect, Alan Keyes and never voted for W.

      Going deeper into your Hub you raised many interesting points and among them three interesting questions that you posed to those questioning you...

      "My questions to them were: 1. Why is that a question? 2. Have you asked any White people if they’re voting for McCain because he’s White? 3. Have you asked anyone, White, Black or other, why they voted for Bush – twice?"

      I did ask you that question, although from a different premise perspective and so I feel somewhat invited to answer, especially seeing as how you encouraged me to read the entire Hub offering.

      1. Ans. It is a question similar to any question that might be asked of someone that has made a decision and may have been surprised by what their decision wrought.

      2. Ans. No... mainly because the question of race in a Presidential election has not really been an issue for me personally, and because I did not know of anyone who openly declared McCain as their choice. Most of my family and friends who voted and openly declared their choice voted for the sitting President and the rest knew my opinion of McCain.

      3. Ans. Yes I have, about half way through his second term.

      Thank you for you comments and fellowship and I will definitely read more of your Hubs.

    • CoauthorU profile image

      CoauthorU 7 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

      Oh great, I find this three days after its posted... and just before work, I will comment when I get home.

      Thanks for replying... oh, and I will read your whole Hub first.

    • T_Augustus profile image

      T_Augustus 7 years ago from Detroit, MI

      I first have to say I am quite offended that my hub isn't listed as a related hub. What's up with that HubPages?

      I chanced across this hub ironically because I googled my name and saw this. Before I responded I had to go back and read the hub and some of the comments...geesh, there are a LOT of comments. Too bad you didn't read all of the hub, it would've given you a slightly more informed opinion of my perspective.

      In regards to your comment about being asked the question about all of those presidents, was this question asked of you after their first term or within the first 9 months of their first term as president? I think that makes a major difference. I ask you not to answer me, but to answer yourself - because you have to be honest with yourself. I wrote that article after being asked that question for the third time, mind you it still wasn't the last time, within the 1st 9 months of his presidency. That, at least in my life, is unprecedented.

      As for your question, yes I would vote for him again. Of course, at this juncture I don't know who his opponent will be so I can't say that I "will" vote for him again. However he hasn't done anything so horrid that I can say I wouldn't.

      I can tell you're a good person, and I don't try to paint all people with a broad stroke, but don't be so naive as to believe that there is no longer people out there that looks at race as a factor. On New Year's Eve I was asked by a White guy what I thought of Obama. I responded to him, "it's New Year's man, just have fun and let's not have this conversation. The fact that you asked me that question, is enough for me to know that we won't agree - so let's talk about something else." He went on to say, "For real though, what is that nigga doin'? What is that nigga doin' man?" I understood his use of the n-word was not mean-spirited, so I ignored it and said "He's just doing his job like the rest of us". He went on to tell me that Obama is "the most divisive president in regards to race in history". I said, "I won't entertain this conversation, but I find it funny that you say he's divisive regarding race - when you're the one that called him a nigga. Have you ever called another president nigga before?" He ate crow, went on with some Republican rhetoric, I finished my beer and departed. I don't make everything about race, I just refuse to ignore the fact that sometimes it is.

      Good hub and stay blessed.

    • CoauthorU profile image

      CoauthorU 7 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

      2 Chas...

      Me too my friend.

    • profile image

      Chasuk 7 years ago

      @Merwin: Actually, you are probably right concerning partisan rhetoric. Good point. I know a fair number of Republicans, and very few of them are truly racist.

      I wish both parties spoke out more vehemently against the unsavory elements who claim to speak for them.

    • CoauthorU profile image

      CoauthorU 7 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

      2 Chas...

      Maybe, but rather, I think it is due more to partisan rhetoric having its influence on the stupid and not necessarily racism.

    • profile image

      Chasuk 7 years ago

      @Merwin: Unusually, I agree with you.

      I've asked the question, "Would you vote for X again?" many times (about past and current presidents), and I've heard it asked many times.

      Race was never the issue (at least for myself); competence was.

      For the record, yes, I would vote for Obama again.

      I don't know whether T_Augustus was being provocative for the sake of provocativeness, or whether he was sincere. Either way, he was inferring racism where it didn't/doesn't necessarily exist.

      Having said that, I do believe that racism against Obama is pervasive. Many questions are asked of him, and many accusations leveled against him, that wouldn't be voiced if he were white. The level of scrutiny that the stupid give him is largely due to racism, or so I believe.


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