Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I'm not racist because I don't want to vote for Obama!

Some elected Democrats in Ohio say the only reason Ohioans won't vote for Barack Obama is because they're racist. Some idiot from Cincinnati said the same thing on CNN last week and even the governor is playing this tune.

"There are good people who won't vote for Obama because he's a black man," (Ted) Strickland said.

I get so sick of this - it's not his skin color I'm voting against, it's his philosophy and policies.

Of course, maybe they're just setting up a reason for losing the state. I can hear it now: "it's not our fault we lost the election, Ohioans are racist..."

I guess they'd rather believe the worst of others than admit their policies don't resonate with their fellow Ohioans.

24 comments:

navyvet said...

Sorry, but BHO and Michelle are the racists....not me.

If he was the "R" candidate...saying he was conservative....and speaking his generalities, I could not vote for him. Honesty is not his best policy...not even close. I don't trust him. He is an empty suit...there is no there, there.

gordon gekko said...

I voted for Ken Blackwell for governor. Does that make me racist?

Lisa Renee said...

Let's see, so far I've been called a variety of swear names, a racist, a traitor, and gone through a variety of different mediums for this to be communicated to me, on my blogs, my home phone and by email.

That's without ever having stated anywhere that I was voting for McCain, this is just from merely pointing out problems I have with the way the media has handled their coverage as well as some of the concerns I have with Obama.

Evidently somewhere along the line the realization that if you treat people like that, chances are they will not only not change their mind about the candidate being pushed, but not want to be associated with anyone who had supporters like that never crossed their minds....

Then, I think back to watching Doni Miller on Bridges back before Obama got the nomination, back on December 16, 2007, she stated, that while “white guilt” works in public, using Biden apologizing right away for his "fresh and clean" comment and that the media was all over him but that “white guilt” doesn’t play when you close the voting curtain.

She and Fletcher Word thought "white guilt" was part of the reason Obama was being supported, but they were not sure this would translate into votes on election day. Keith Wilkowski who was also on the program stated he did not believe race is going to be a significant factor, that those who did not support the idea of a black president probably would not be voting for the Democratic candidate anyway.

Which falls in line with what you stated, there is an underlying theme out there that if you don't support Obama, you are either racist or not a good Democrat...

Maggie Thurber said...

The saddest part of all of this is the hypocrisy.

Some dems are saying you're racist if you don't vote for Obama, but those same Dems weren't saying that about Ken Blackwell. No - they didn't support Blackwell because of his policies, not because of his skin color. However, to those same democrats, failure to support Obama becomes racist.

The other problem is the whole issue of race. Those who profess to be more 'open' to such issues are the ones who see racism in others, while those others are not paying any attention whatsoever to the color of skin.

I was asked once if the reason I didn't support a board appointee was because he was an African-American male. I didn't have any idea of his race and responded that because I didn't know what it was, his skin color couldn't possibly have been a factor - there were plenty of reasons for my objection, which I detailed.

Of course, my repetition of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King's words about being judged by character rather than color didn't go over very well - the impression from the discussion was that judging by something other than race was unacceptable.

I fear that the biggest obstacle to overcoming 'the race issue' isn't from the small number of people who might judge by skin color alone, but from those who think others are doing so.

Lisa Renee said...

The ironic thing is that Obama is only half black and there seems to be this assumption that that is the half that matters race wise.

For many of us it would not matter if he were black, white, yellow, white or black. The issues and concerns would exist. I completely understand the historical significance, I understood it when the possibility of a woman being elected to president existed. Unfortunately there are those out there that are voting based on just race or gender alone. There should be more to it than that...Now if the candidates were so similar that was your area of making a decision between the two? That would be easier to understand than those making race or sex their primary motivation for voting.

I don't disagree with you on the hypocrisy, it's been a huge disappointment.

Tim Higgins said...

Maggie,

Isn't it amazing that the only group talking about race is the Obama campaign (and of course their willing supporters in the downstream media)?

Like Lisa, I have been called a name or two in my time (most of which are not repeatable in polite company). I like to believe, as has been pointed out, that I vote for people who believe the the things that I do however.

Since I have no intention of voting for Obama, I will therefore willing accept the mantle of racist if I must. I do so however, only to avoid accepting policies that would brand me as a socialist instead.

Hooda Thunkit said...

Obama is black?

Huh!

And here I thought tha Bill Clinton was black.

Does anybody still make decisions based on color (except for "people of color"?)

Most "whities" that I know don't seem to; that sort of thing has died off since the 50's as I recall, except in the "non-white community...

skeeter1107 said...

I see the accusation as a straw dog. I don't think it has anything to do with racism. It strikes me as a cynical attempt to bully, coerce and shame people to vote for their candidate when their other methods don't seem to be working. Essentially, if they see Ohio slipping away due to their candidates ideas or experience, they then have to resort to something else.

If on the other hand they actually do believe their racism charge, then they are doing their candidate harm by being unwilling to look at the situation in a clear-eyed unbiased assessment.

If you look at voting patterns in Ohio, There is a greater correlation to party affiliation or trends than a racial component. Ken Blackwell is a good example. Blackwell didn't receive 90% of the African American votes when he last ran. However, the Democratic candidates received overwhelming support. Reverse Racism? No, traditional patterns.

Robin said...

Maggie, In all honesty, I don't think that they were referring to you. Since, you probably wouldn't vote for anyone with a "D" next to his/her name. There are some people out there who will not vote for Obama, because of his skin color. Just like there were quite a few people who didn't vote for Hillary Clinton, because she is female (at least that is what I gathered from a loud late-night conversation my neighbors were having on their front porch, when I was trying to get to sleep).

On the same token, there are people who are going to vote for McCain just because he was a POW.

For some people, the issues don't matter. That is one reason why these political commercials are so outrageous and filled with half-truths.

Chili Dog said...

there is a world of difference between strickland's comments and the comments from "the valley' democrat.

strickland correctly points out that there are those who will not vote for obama merely because of his race.

letson and and hagan are just plain stupid for their comments. obviously for every reason a person has to vote for obama, there is another reason for a person to vote against him.

unless you are a southern ohioan, i don't believe this applies to you anyway.

relax a bit.

The A-Hole Lawyer said...

From TheAssHoleLawyer's blog August 29, 2008.


We Have Come So Far So Fast!

We are a young country, and in 232 years have made progress in every arena leaps and bounds ahead of those across the world. Last night, Barrack Obama became the first African American to accept a major party's nomination for President. A Harvard grad., a Senator, and child of a mixed marriage. We have come so far.

Slavery and servitude has existed in Asia for thousands of years, Slavery and Servitude has existed and continues in the Middle East, and Slavery and Servitude has existed and continues in Africa .

Yet We Have Overcome! The candidacy and nomination of Obama are proof of this fact.

But,wait...................... ....When he looses, the voices singing praise, "crying their eyelashes off," and bursting with pride will DECLARE RACISM IS ALIVE IN AMERICA. Because when he looses, due to his lack of experience, lack of candor, extreme liberal voting record, and his socialist plan which will wreak havoc on our country and citizens, these factors will not be cited as the reason.

The Claims will be - White Racist Conservative Christian America supports the status Quo. Barrack Lost Because he is Black.

Barrack should loose because he is wrong. Wrong on taxes, wrong on energy, wrong on Socialism, wrong on national security, and wrong on health care. He is inexperienced and illogical in his economic and policy positions. That is why he will loose.

But we will never hear it, amidst the cries of racism and politics of division.

TAHL

Maggie Thurber said...

Robin - I've voted for Democrats in the past. I vote for the person, not the party. I vote for the philosophy, the positions and the records - not the race or gender.

While there may be some who vote on such issues, I refuse to believe that the numbers are as being portrayed. I think America's come further than that.

But we do agree that with some, issues don't matter.

Maggie Thurber said...

Chili Dog - the reason racism can continue to exist is because we let it. To excuse such statements contributes to the problem.

And I think the issue is as important to us 'northwest' Ohioans as it is to 'southern' Ohioans.

Are you now discriminating against our southern bretheren? :)

navyvet said...

TAHL....if elected...BHO will be the first Arab American to be Pres.

His lineage...East Africa was Arab...So....50% white...40% Arab...and 10% ?

Who cares? If he is elected.....I will just empty my bank account...give it all to the government...and let them spread it around as they deem fit....

Where are my Tums?

The A-Hole Lawyer said...

Michelle Obama made this comment in a speech yesterday.

"Don't vote because 'she's cute'"

How about, don't vote because he's black.

I had a discussion with a democrat African American co-worker, and after several minutes of discussion she admitted that she was voting for Obama because he was black.

She stated "after all that my grandmother, and my mother and even I have gone through with racism, and never thinking we would be in this position to elect a black man, you bet I am voting for him."

I told her I appreciated her honesty, and asked if race was the best reason to elect the most powerful person on the planet? She said yes.

When I asked her if it was just as valid then to vote for McCain because he is white, she said "that's different." And we agreed to disagree.

TAHL

Carol said...

By and large the American public votes based on emotion. The politicians know this and play right into it.

The idea of voting based on issues, causes and parallel view is way too confusing and time consuming for most.

In short - we (collectively) take the lazy way out and pick the person that has the best smile, preferred color of skin, preferred gender, most stylish clothes, etc.

And that's a reprehensible practice.

Kevin Lockett said...

Everywhere I go, people are very angry about this topic. Two things really bother me:

1. Why do people think that at the mere mention of the race factor, the speaker is calling any white voter who votes for McCain racist? No one with any sense thinks that. Many will just vote the party line, and if they're Republican, that means McCain. However, there are also many - not all but many - who can not bring themselves to vote for a black man. At a time when the Republicans have screwed up so royally over the past 8 years and any Democrat was expected to have a big head start just for having a "D" by their name, many just can't bring themselves to vote for Obama.

2. Why are so many Americans so petrified by the notion that some people are racists? If there is racism in America, then shouldn't we identify it and talk about it so that we can move on?

Those two things really bother me. There's also comments like those expressed in the comments above, like "no one is racist any more" or "only 'colored people' vote based on race." give me a break. Also, for those of you who think Obama is just an "empty suit," ever stop to think about how the American construction of race makes such a view possible?

If we were real patriots, we'd try to fix our flaws instead of denying them. But you'll probably all call me racist for saying that.

Maggie Thurber said...

Kevin - it's not that there are some people who are racist..there are - and they have all kinds of skin colors.

There does seem to be a double standard by some - that it's wrong to vote AGAINST someone because of race but it's okay to vote FOR someone because of race. That should bother all of us.

I think Obama is an empty suit, but that's because of his positions - it has nothing to do with the color of his skin.

What I object to is some people thinking that the reason Obama isn't much farther ahead is due to other people's racism. The ones who suggest such a thing see only the race - not Obama's positions, policies and votes.

Interestingly, read my post about the most recent Ohio poll that shows McCain up. The majority of those polled who think race will be an issue are Democrats - the party that supposedly rejects such perspectives.

Yes, we should have a more open discussion about race...but that won't happen if both sides keep insisting that the other 'can't possible know what it's like.' Such a statement is true, but that doesn't mean we can't try to understand and then go on from there.

Kevin Lockett said...

Maggie, the "double standard" you are referring to just doesn't hold up when you look at the numbers. Even if black prejudice against McCain existed at the same rate as white racism against Obama, Obama would be the net looser because there are way more white voters. But even this is not the case. As far as we can tell with the information we have, a lot (not all, not most, but a lot) of white people who would otherwise vote for Obama won't because he's black.

As for Democrats, that's my point exactly. Obama is struggling to get the support of his own party because there are even some Democrats who won't vote for him because of his race.

As far as the "empty suit" thing: I recently read about a voter who said she supported Hillary Clinton over Obama because Obama was too abstract and Clinton laid out the details of her policy on her website, while Obama did not. Then this person admitted to never having visited Obama's website (which does lay out those details no one seems to think exist). I'm not saying that anyone who sees Obama as an empty suit is racist. I just think that it's a lot easier to see him that way because we've grown up in a society that teaches us to see black in general in that way.

P.S. - Don't forget, many blacks did not support Obama early on. We were never willing to give him our vote automatically.

Maggie Thurber said...

The double standard I was referring to was this: whites are racist if they vote against Obama but blacks are not if they vote for him - in both cases because of his race.

While there are some who won't vote for Obama because of his race, including Democrats, I sincerely doubt the numbers are even remotely significant.

And because I don't know how old you are, I can only speak for myself and people my age. I DID NOT grow up in a society that teaches us to see black people in general as 'empty suits.'

I grew up in a society that sees people for what's inside - and that is so much more important than color of skin.

(As an aside, I think some could make an opposing argument that any person of color in a 'suit' had to work twice as hard and be twice as good just to get to the point of wearing the 'suit.')

Kevin Lockett said...

"any person of color in a 'suit' had to work twice as hard and be twice as good just to get to the point of wearing the 'suit.'" Unless that's Barack Obama, right?

Can you really say that we live in a society that teaches to look within and not at color? I think that's a flawed evaluation of U.S. society, unless you are referring to the concept of colorblindness, which perpetuates racism by ignoring it and placing the burden of blame on the oppressed and not the society that has oppressed them.

I didn't want to go here, but do you really believe that a black person, considering the history of the black experience in the country over the past four centuries, wanting to finally see a black person achieve the highest office in the land is equivalent to a white person voting against a black person because they can't stomach the idea of a black president?

The oppressed wanting less oppression is the same as the privileged wanting more? Or should we just blot out the darker portions of our nation's history.

Maggie Thurber said...

Again, Kevin, you miss the point.

It isn't whether or not people think that, it's the point that one is okay while the other isn't. And then you go on to support the idea that one person's discrimination (for a person of color because of the color) is okay while another's discrimination (against a person of color because of the color) is not.

That's the double standard.

Furthermore, what happened in the past cannot forever be held against white people - many of whom are NOT descended of slave owners. When will the guilt for what other people did stop being imposed upon people today?

And do not try to twist what I said. You said some people are more likely to see Obama as an 'empty suit' because of his color. I made the corresponding argument that others are just as likely to see him as having had to work harder just to be considered the same.

I think he's an empty suit because of his policies, positions and lack of substance therein. He's terrific at rhetoric and delivering a speech, but I don't think there is a lot of substance to his policy positions and those with such substance are contrary to what I think our government and country need.

As for your last statement, "The oppressed wanting less oppression is the same as the privileged wanting more?" ... I never said nor implied such and resent such a comment directed toward me. Rejecting a person in terms of my vote for president because I disagree with his positions and policies is not racist, nor is it supporting oppression.

Additionally, pointing out that voting in favor of someone because of race is just as bad as voting against someone because of race is identifying the double standard. I oppose discrimination in ALL its forms. I don't know about you, but I was always taught that two wrongs don't make a right.

Kevin Lockett said...

I didn't miss your point at all. You are arguing that blacks voting for Obama because he's black are wrong, as are whites who vote for McCain because they don't want an African American in the White House.

I acknowledge that this is the point you are making, and personally, I agree that blacks who are voting for Obama because of his race and for no other reason are as much a threat to the integrity of our electoral process as whites who do the opposite.

However, I do not agree that both scenarios are equal. There is no one-to-one relationship. A lot of black people are excited about voting for Obama because, in addition to agreeing with him on the issues, they see him as a symbol of good character overcoming oppression. Many people never thought they would live to see this day. They believe that, after 43 white male presidents, having a black person in the White House would be a boost in eradicating the social inequity that still exists today. How is that the same as a person who votes for McCain because they can't stand the thought of a black man as head of state? This is what I meant when I asked if you felt "The oppressed wanting less oppression is the same as the privileged wanting more?"

Also, I would never seek to blame whites living today for the injustices of the past. However, I will also never ignore the ways in which the injustices of the past have residual effects in today's society. While we may not be responsible for the sins of the past, we've been left with the unfortunate task of dealing with their aftereffects. When we urge blacks to "get over" the past for fear of blaming 21st century whites for crimes they did not commit, we let the past live on. We should instead confront the ways in which past prejudice impacts today's society, and aggressively seek to remedy such impact.

It is also important to remember that racism against minorities lives on today. Yes, there are many minorities who harbor prejudices against whites, and they deserve their fair share of blame and criticism. However, to suggest that their hatred is identical to white racism in either its source or its impact is absurd. Both forms of hatred must be confronted, but we will never end either if we continue to refuse to be honest about what they are.

I'm glad that you oppose discrimination in all forms. However, I hope that you will understand that prejudice does take many forms, and evaluate and speak out against them in a way that acknowledges those differences.

Robin said...

Maggie, Sorry for the assumption.

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