Sunday, March 16, 2008


“For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country, and not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change.” (February 20, 2008, Milwaukee WI) Michelle Obama

“Racism is how this country was founded and how this country was run. . .We believe in white supremacy and black inferiority and believe it more than we believe in God.” Rev. Jeremiah Wright, former pastor, Chicago Trinity United Church of Christ

“ All of the statements that have been the subject of controversy are the ones that I vehemently condemn. They in no way reflect my attitudes and directly contradict my profound love for this country.” Barack Obama, speaking about Rev. Wright

I've said before that white amerikkka supports Barack Obama because he was not a part of the Civil Rights Movement; does not mention the racial history of this country but instead focuses upon the myths and privileged beliefs upon which this country was founded and remains invested; is not seen as "angry"; and is believed to be invested in upholding and perpetuating the interests of white amerikkka.

MUCH –- and I mean MUCH (!!!) –- has been made during this entire campaign by white media and white amerikkka about Barack Obama’s (in their views) “transcending race”; about his having a white mother; about his being a “post-Civil Rights” candidate; AND about his not being connected to the experience of enslavement and resulting “Amerikkkan Apartheid” that has kept so many other Black people –- in the words of white news pundits and others -- “angry.” These characteristics were trumpeted just as much as his call for “change.”

Time and time again it was emphasized that Barack Obama did not talk about racism or race or amerikkka’s racial history –- or, in another media variation, that he did not talk about these subjects in a way that made white people “feel bad.”

And thus far in his campaign, that “social contract” with white amerikkka –- that he would not speak honestly about racism; that he would ignore this country’s history of racial oppression and move forward; that he would not act as other Afrikan Descendant candidates have in the past (hello, Jesse) and present (hello, Cynthia McKinney) –- was a viable one.

Senator Obama spoke and represented in a way that kept white amerikkka comfortable. And he was rewarded by his acceptance as a “mainstream” candidate instead of being marginalized as the “Black candidate” as was Jesse Jackson, even though Jesse Jackson was an active advocate for his vision of a “rainbow coalition” as the backbone for his presidential run.

And white amerikkka (and its Black allies) began to break out the confetti and champagne as it congratulated itself on having officially “moved past the issue of race.”

In February, however, that “social contract” began to tear with Michelle Obama’s remarks alluding to the sorry history of racial oppression in this country. White media went wild, with even John McCain’s wife weighing in on the subject.

Then came Minister Louis Farrakhan’s assessment of Senator Obama and all heck broke loose with white amerikkka in a fright at the “hate.”

Now Senator Obama is being called upon to “denounce” and “reject” the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, his pastor, mentor, and friend for the past 17 years, just for speaking some hard hitting historical truths about racial oppression in amerikkka.

And not once in all the discussion has it been mentioned that much of what he’s reported to have said has its basis in historical truths.

And just because most in this country would prefer NOT to remember, that doesn’t make it less true.

But what is really at issue here is not “truth.”

What is really at issue here is white amerikkka’s comfort level.

And it seems as if historical truths –- and those who speak them -- will once again have to be sacrificed on the altar of white amerikkka’s comfort.

Everyone is invested in pointing to Obama’s current success as a sign of how “far we’ve come” in terms of “race relations.”

But the racial litmus test that white folk were trying to make of the Obama campaign has only now really,truly, just begun because those close to Senator Obama attempted to acknowledge the history of Afrikan Descendants in this country instead of denying it to make white amerikkka feel comfortable.

Has amerikkka grown enough to acknowledge and talk about its history and legacy of white supremacy in this without being censured and reviled as "divisive" or "unpatriotic"?

Will Barack Obama’s presidential campaign be derailed if he has the character to refuse to “denounce and renounce” those who air amerikkka’s dirty racial history of oppression front and center?

Will the country finally have the character to be able to have a mature, honest conversation about its ugly racial history and still stand behind and elect an Afrikan Descendant candidate who will not hide from that reality?

As long as this campaign has been on-going (and it seems like it has been going on forever), we are just beginning to really begin the test of seeing where amerikkka is on the issue of racism-white supremacy.

Barack Obama’s running did not do that.

But how he and white amerikkka respond to Michelle Obama’s and Reverend Wright’s comments will.


Moving Forward!