Pump Up the Hate
With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds…. Abraham Lincoln’s 2nd Inaugural Address
As the policies, plans and promises of both parties fade, the supreme theme of this election remains, to no one’s surprise, race. One side asserts that, policies and ability aside, it would be, as they asserted in 2008, racist not to elect the current president. The opposition denies the race is about race at all but is instead about the ability to govern and the need for more effective policies. Hence the current president, lacking both, must go. Both sides promulgate their lie of choice. The nation is not fooled. Tuesday will determine which lie the nation will tolerate for the next four years.
Both positions are lies because while the defeat of Obama would not be racist, his defeat would indeed turn on his race. Every advantage taken by Obama during his rise depended on his race. This continues to this day. His promoters deny this but we have had enough peeks behind their curtains of political prevarication to know that their denials, while useful and soothing to the masses, are lies and are known by them to be so.
Without his African-American veneer Obama would never have risen above a minor ward-heeler, if that. Without his race is doubtful whether or not his matriculation to Occidental college would have been assured. Harvard Law would have been only a dream in a rising plume of reefer smoke. If Obama has just been another white kid with a deep tan on the beaches of Hawaii some today might vote him the best bong maker on Maui, but nobody would be voting for him as president of the United States. It was because of his race and, quite literally, by hook and by crook that he rose to be the right man in the right place at the right time with the right advisors and the right supporters and the right opponents to be able to step, as he did, into history.
As a political creature Obama wears his skin as emblem, armor, and passport. And that, as these things go, is fair enough. There have been a host of bad white presidents over the centuries. Just because you are an African-American president doesn’t mean you’ll be any good at it. It just means you’ll be historic in the way that firsts are always historic. His looming defeat does not mean a defeat for African-Americans, but only the opening for another to that race to achieve another first; the first to be elected for two terms; the first to unite rather than divide a racially riven nation.
At the same time, the failure to re-elect Obama will have racial ramifications no matter how much that is denied by his opponents. It will be seen, by many on the left and the right, as a repudiation of African-Americans; as a black mark against the entire experiment in equality through special favors that has been festering in the body politic for well over 50 years. Although Obama’s failure will be due in the main to his limitations, his lackluster work ethic, his hubris, and his intellectual pretensions and hallucinations, his failure will inevitably be felt, mainly by his supporters, to reflect poorly on his race. It will be a false reflection but it will exist and it will sting. Because of this his supporters are correct when they assert that race is a factor in this election. They are, however, incorrect is asserting that arises from some vast white conspiracy to dethrone Obama. Instead this racism grows out of Obama and his supporters slapping down the race card from an deck that has nothing but race cards in it. The exacerbation and manipulation of racial tensions to camouflage incompetence and to promote various policies and people is something the Obama cult has done daily for years. Indeed, it does not know how to govern without it.
An African-Amercan president of real depth of character and range of intellect could have made great strides in healing forever the wounds of race in America; he could have, as Lincoln dreamed, ‘bound up the nation’s wounds.’ Instead, the stunted intellect and character of Obama, once in office, made sure to poke and pry at the wounds and infect them at every turn. For a man who arrived at his inauguration with literally “all the best will in the world” when it came to racial matters, Obama and his crew have assiduously set about ruining that gift of the people. The result, after four years of preferences, set-asides, slanted justice, corrupt cronyism, and stealth reparations, is to make the election of 2012 as bitter a referendum on race as the election of 2008 was a hopeful step forward. In the popular parlance Obama has taken us all one step forward and two steps back.
If Obama had the intellect of Fredrick Douglas and the soul of James Baldwin his mark on history would soar will beyond “first.” Instead he’s just Al Sharpton in a nicer suit with a jump shot and a smooth side of blather. It’s sad really that the nation’s hope to have a more racially relaxed society has been shattered by the change Obama brought with him, but when a man’s main talent is his skin any change he can hope to bring is only skin deep.