Thursday, September 11, 2008

"They" will keep him down.

Keep who down? Why, Barack Obama if he becomes president, of course. A woman interviewed in a silly focus group that NPR got together explains who "they" are as well. "The white system ... that's who 'they' are, OK?" I have to say, being part of an entrenched power structure sounds like a sweet gig. But, try as I might, I cannot find the online applications to be a flunky in the Pentavaret.

More seriously, for all the talk about "is the US ready for a black president", the handy trick of reversing the adjectives provides an instructive lesson about who might really have problems accepting other races.

From the NPR story:
"Of the seven white voters and six voters of color, the majority of white voters are supporting McCain. All of the people of color are supporting Obama."
Try reading that with the adjectives flipped.
"Of the seven voters of color and six white voters, the majority of voters of color are supporting Obama. All of the whites are supporting McCain."
Sound a little more ominous when the whites are unified behind a leader of the same color? Not too bad? Let's try another one.
"I'm a Democrat, and I'm going to vote for Obama, and one of the reasons is because he is black."
I've read and heard variations on this all over. Let's see how it reads flipped around.
"I'm a Republican, and I'm going to vote for McCain, and one of the reasons is because he is white."
Whoa! That well and truly crosses the line, does it not? Let's try one more from the NPR article.
"I don't know if I can see another old white man as president."
That already sounds a bit off, but flipping it around a bit (and editing out "another" so it will jibe with history) makes it an explicit declaration (in reverse) of what the US will be condemned for should McCain prevail in November.
"I don't know if I can see old black man as president."
I've lived in the South and have met white racists and none that I have met has ever been given such a respectful public hearing as this. The delusional racist nonsense that was Jim Crow, slavery, etc. has been replaced by the new delusional racism that whitey is out to get you.
"I'm a Democrat, and I'm going to vote for Obama, and one of the reasons is because he is black. I think he is qualified and come on, let's face facts. This man is going to be wiretapped up to his eyeballs. Come on people. You really think he is going to be put in office, and they are not going to keep an eye on him? Be for real.

"They are going to watch this man like white on rice. He's not going to be his own person per se. He is going to be screened to the max. … The white system ... that's who 'they' are, OK?"