Ok, another pause in the pursuit of Justice. Over and over again I heard it this week… “I never thought I’d see the day that a black man would be President of the United States.”
Why the hell not? Sure it’s a milestone, but it is, or should be, little more than a scenic stop, certainly worthy of crowding around and taking a few smiling pictures before continuing on down the road, but seriously questioning that we’d ever get there? Gawking at in astonishment?
I never questioned it. And I haven’t, and don’t, question that a women (or a Jew or a person from Boise Idaho, etc, etc, etc) would or could or will be elected President of the United States. Why would you consider skin color or gender to be of any significance, for or against, being elected President? I unhumbly submit that if you thought or think that those are legitimate issues, then the fear is probably more a reflection of your own failings, than they are of America’s.
Please, please, at this moment, please re-examine the other stupid positions you may hold about the United States of America. You know the ones, Americans are… ‘Unintelligent people’, ‘spoiled brats’, ‘ignorant people’, ‘greedy materialists’, ‘racist, sexist homophobes’, ‘no longer a great power’, ‘imperialists’, ‘warmongers’, etc, etc, etc. The first step is to admit that you were wrong to begin with (and you'll have a very visible reminder of that every day for the next four years). The next step is to shut the hell up and spend some time cleaning your head out, before you spout off again about what America is, or isn't.
While I recognize that electing the first black President is a significant and very cool milestone to be noted and passed, it is so only on the basis of it being the first time, it is of no significance in and of itself, in the sense that the color of ones skin should not have any relevance to electing a president. In fact, the true significance of the occasion is, and can only be made real, through his skin color having no place in the citizenry's decision making process for electing him. A more disturbing thought arises when you look at the shear quantities of "...never thought I'd see the day..." comments, and you begin to wonder just how many people voted for President Obama because of the color of his skin, rather than the content of his character and ideas... with such thoughts, the occasion threatens to lose some of it's legitimacy.
I look forward to the day when a person's color, ancestry, gender, etc, are noted with no more significance than is accorded their favorite meals, sport teams and other pastimes.
The issue for me, is are the policies of this person who is running for, or has been elected to the office of the President of the United States, going to be good for, or bad for, the nation, primarily measured by whether or not his ideas and policies gibe with, or oppose, the UnitedStates Constitution (Btw, I didn't vote for George W. Bush in the 2000 primaries (though I did in the election, due to the Gore being the alternative), because I thought his 'compassionate conservatism' would not gibe with the constitution, and I was proven correct).
Obviously, I think Obama's policies (based upon what little we know of what he has said and thinks, good luck finding them in any substance, or consistency over time), will be bad for the country. But call me not cynical enough if you'd like, but in all of the pictures & clips I've seen of him with his family, such as this one, they lead me to think that on a personal level at least, he's probably a decent guy, husband and father, I don't think we'll have a stained blue dress incident with the current President. And as President, in his ceremonial and generic head of state and leadership positions, I do want him to be respected... not belittled and not reviled, and in that role I want him to be a 'successful' President.
But only that far. As a leader of the democrat party, as a political leader pushing democrat policies, I want him to fail, BIG time. I do hope that he is stopped in his political tracks at every turn in the coming years (though I’m very thankful that Obama is president, and not Joe Biden [shiver])… but there are no grounds for the anti-American “never thought I’d see the day that X would happen in America.” comments; next time you find yourself thinking one of those thoughts, please consider the possibility that the problem you are fretting about is a problem of one of your own failings, not America’s.
I don't hate Obama. I don't need to hate Obama. However I suspect that I will despise and oppose the bulk of his positions and policies, and I will do what I can, little as that may be, to block his every move.
Perhaps those of you leftists out there will now discover a new found appreciation for saying "I support the President, but not his policies".
Jonah Goldberg has similar sentiments, and draws some conclusions from them (Hat tip to WitNit):
"...At a more political level, a black president surely undermines the argument that American racism is so endemic that a system of racial quotas must remain a permanent fixture of the political and legal landscape.
... If Obama lives up to the dreams of his supporters in writing a new, post-racial chapter for America, he will have at once done more for America than any Democratic president in generations. But he also will have cut the knot holding much of the left together. As an American and as a conservative, I certainly hope that’s the case. He’s already made a good start of it just by getting elected. "