Shades of gray…

19 Oct

The racial politics of this presidential race are truly distressing. When I hear about the racial epithets hurled at McCain/Palin rallies toward Obama and the prejudiced comments of the people who attend those rallies, it really upsets me.

Here’s my question. Why can’t people see through color and look at a person for who he or she is? Sure, Obama looks black, but he’s actually biracial — the product of a white mother and an African father. I can’t think of a better person to best represent the ethnic diversity that is part and parcel of the American experience. In his book Dreams of My Father, Obama explores what his background and upbringing have meant to him. This book, written long before he became a US Senator, is an honest and poetic look at feelings about identity.

When I look at Obama I don’t see color. I see an intelligent man who is willing to take on one of the hardest jobs in the world to make this a better place for us all.

While Obama has openly explored his identity, his opponent, John McCain hasn’t. McCain’s family owned slaves. He has black relatives. Every year the McCain family has an interracial family reunion in Teoc, Mississippi which McCain’s own brother, Joe attends.

Why then, allow race to enter into his campaign? Is McCain so afraid of where he’s come from? Why can’t he own his background?


3 Responses to “Shades of gray…”

  1. White Hot Magik October 25, 2008 at 8:59 pm #

    I haven’t kept up with the news this week to know what event you are referring too. However interestingly I notice a marked difference in our generation vs our parents vs grandparents in regards to the race issue and so I have hope. Obama’s race really doesn’t matter to me, except in terms of historical significance and it would seem so with most people of my age range. Anyone I know who is not a supporter of him is based on political philosophy not race, or too scared to say otherwise.

  2. Doug October 27, 2008 at 7:51 pm #

    If Obama was white, he’d be 20 points ahead of McCain, no question.

  3. geckogrrl October 31, 2008 at 4:28 pm #

    I think both of you have a good point. My mom and two of my friends’ moms have all said things about people not voting for Obama because he’s black. So the older generation may think of this a lot more, apparently. I heard on the radio last night a comment from the black mayor of Columbus, Ohio, though, who said that the younger generation is much more focused on the issues rather than on race. It might be that (aside from the scary supremacists) the millenium generation, because it is so diverse, may be much more interested in the issues at hand and much less concerned about race.

    It’s just too bad that people can be so biased about something like skin color.

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