I normally avoid commenting on the American election, and I certainly don’t have anything to add about Obama’s speech (full CQ transcript here) that you haven’t already heard or read. I do, however, feel compelled to make one comment about the “event” itself.
What we are witnessing is a clear example of “white privilege.” When are we going to hear this kind of full discourse on race from Clinton or Obama? Probably never. It’s too incendiary a topic and they can always retreat to their safer majority white worlds. Why risk it? Obama doesn’t have that privilege; he has to face the subject every day.
So here’s my challenge to my white brothers and sisters, regardless of your political leanings or candidate preference. Educate yourself on the legacy of racism and incarnate yourself into the black world for a while. Study the systems that perpetuate our racialized world. As you begin to “get it” (and this will take a long time and a lot of painful effort) start speaking up, so your black brothers and sisters don’t always have to carry the burden.
While you are here check out this post from Frank Schaeffer. (Thanks to Jim West of my previous post.)
When Senator Obama’s preacher thundered about racism and injustice Obama suffered smear-by-association. But when my late father — Religious Right leader Francis Schaeffer — denounced America and even called for the violent overthrow of the US government, he was invited to lunch with presidents Ford, Reagan and Bush, Sr.
Every Sunday thousands of right wing white preachers (following in my father’s footsteps) rail against America’s sins from tens of thousands of pulpits. They tell us that America is complicit in the “murder of the unborn,” has become “Sodom” by coddling gays, and that our public schools are sinful places full of evolutionists and sex educators hell-bent on corrupting children. They say, as my dad often did, that we are, “under the judgment of God.” They call America evil and warn of immanent destruction. By comparison Obama’s minister’s shouted “controversial” comments were mild. All he said was that God should damn America for our racism and violence and that no one had ever used the N-word about Hillary Clinton