Monday, January 11, 2010

The LuLac Edition #1068, Jan. 11th, 2010



First off let me start out by saying that every human being on this earth is prejudiced. Anyone who tells you they are not are lying either to you or themselves. We all have biases that are directed at other people. Those ideas come from fundamental defects in the human condition. As people trying to make our way on this earth we try to redeem ourselves by first admitting those prejudices and then overcoming them judging people on a case by case basis. When Richard Nixon or Harry Truman made anti Semitic remarks that are part of the historical record, we judged them as a product of their times. It is high irony that both Truman and Nixon had best friends and counselors of the Jewish faith. Lyndon Johnson who did more for civil rights than any President save Lincoln, referred to blacks in the most derogatory terms. This is not making excuses just stating the facts. Harry Reid, the Majority Leader who has been doing the heavy lifting on health care made a remark about President Obama during the ’08 campaign. The remark was not unlike Joe Biden’s who referred to Obama as a “clean black man”. I believe Reid was talking from his political prejudice. Politics is image. As a matter of fact the game is ruled by image. Is it prejudice to say President Obama is light skinned? Yes. But is it prejudicial to say that because of the fact he would be a more attractive candidate to go before the voters? Absolutely not. Politics is the biggest reality show in America and dammit you better look good. There are Americans in this country who are scared of Democrats. Who can forget the irrational pounding Michael Dukakis or John Kerry took? We heard about the New England Governor being a taxman and Kerry being anti veteran. Then in the spring of ’08 you had as the front runner a black man? I’m sure there were more than a few Democrats who felt that fact alone would scare America. The second choice was even more problematical, a woman. I talked to more than my fair share of rednecks in ’08 who said they’d rather vote for a black guy than a woman. Harry Reid was making an observation that was more clinical than hateful.
Ever since my auto accident and the use of a cane, (and I am by no means comparing this to true racial discrimination, just making a point) I see the reactions of strangers when I first meet them. Especially on my job interviews. Although by law they can’t ask what’s wrong with me, I know they wonder. Wonder if I’m less vigorous than other workers, wonder if there was a fire if I’d prevent others from scrambling to safety in a big building. If I were to run for public office (FDR notwithstanding) the prejudice born of political strategy and necessity would be, “what’s wrong with him?” I accept that as a fact of life. Image. It’s everything. There have been black candidates before. Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm who had a piercing staccato voice, Jesse Jackson with the 80s big hair and the angry shout “I am somebody”, the then rotund Al Sharpton with the jelled New York slick hair and the dubious baggage. Then there was Obama. Smart, married, hot to women but unlike Bill Clinton, John Edwards and Teddy Kennedy not possessing a roving eye. He was the package. Just like Sarah Palin was the image that caught the eye of the McCain campaign. Other GOP women were more qualified but they didn't have "it". Harry Reid was dissecting candidate Obama, his color, his speaking style, his mannerisms as a commodity. While that might not be humane, it is the real world of politics. There are many perceptions people have about persons of color as well as people with a disability. When those perceptions become hateful and mean, it dehumanizes the subject. When it is a sheer statement of fact, however clumsily worded, it is an xray into that person’s potential successful traits. Sometimes what you’re not is more important than who you really are.
Here are two videos of two black men. Both hugely successful in their careers and endeavors. Image, as I said is everything.


At 12:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

okay, i get your point. politics makes human beings objects much like porn objectifies women. obama seems to understand that reid was compimenting him. kind of like me saying you move pretty fast for being a cripple. that there are guys out there on disability with more agility than you. not terribley kind but accurate.

At 1:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reid actually made an accurate analysis, much like Rush Limbaugh did, as becomes more evident each year, concerning Donovan McNabb. It is just if you talk about an African American in a perceived negative tone and you are Caucasian, that is white for the heynas, you are a racist.

At 2:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh Boy! Looks like that "Good Catholic Education" is in trouble again. This one comes right from the top in the form of allegations against the Superintendent of Schools. Does the local dirt never end? Jesus!

At 5:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"not terribly kind but accurate."

Kinda goes to the pesky "character" question though.

At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW!!! Looks like Palin was even more empty headed than I thought.
They say they assumed she would be of moderate intelligence when the McCainites picked her. Glad he didnt get elected for a couple good reasons. Sarah, In Korea its the usual layout, Bad guys North-
Good Guys South. Just like our Civil War. You have heard of the Civil War havent you? As too WWI and WWII... Oh well, just keep winkin" Sarah.


At 8:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Sarah is a total asshole but she could get me to watch FOX if she were a regular. Love that wink!


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