Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Racism and the Presidential Election

So apparently racism is the advance reason Obama may have trouble during his re-election. Granted, he successfully won the presidency, but damnit, this time the racists are actually coming out to vote! Or, perhaps, the racists have made huge gains and have converted millions to their cause since 2008. Hard to say.

I have trouble even getting charged up about this sort of thing anymore. I suppose there's something to be said for being outraged - OUTRAGED - at the insinuation that one is racist for opposing Obama. But I'm coming closer to reacting to the mere charge of racism with a shrug and apathy. If, say... mere and simple opposition to Obama is enough to raise the charge of racism - even warrant the label of racism - then what has been accomplished is to make it justifiable to support someone who is racist.

I want to be clear what I mean: If "racist" has been redefined to mean, oh... "opposing Obama's health care plans"... if that act alone, as stated, is somehow now an example of what it means to be a racist, that's fine. But if opposing Obama's health care plans is justifiable, even while that interesting redefinition of "racist" has taken place, then the result is this: An act of racism is now justifiable. There are now situations where it's okay to be a racist.

Now of course the sort of person making the racism charge in a hypothetical situation like that probably isn't trying to say that a racist act can be justifiable. No, they're probably hoping that by calling such an act racist, they are doing much to discourage it. But communication doesn't always work out the way a single party hopes. See how "Brights" was intended to mean "more-intelligent-than-average, free-thinking individuals", but the actual result was closer to a dictionary entry of "Brights: See "loud, annoying assholes"."