Tag Archives: black president

My President Is Black

I’ve seen that phrase on a T-shirt and there’s even a song about it, but those words have been ringing in my head since even before I noticed these things. I was excited on election night when Obama officially won (did cartwheels in the street to prove it), but admittedly, it didn’t fully sink in that we had just elected the first Black President (unless you count Lincoln and we’re not discussing that in this particular post…lol). Those words are the reason that I was willing to make an almost three hour trip, that normally takes 20 minutes, to the mall to witness the swearing in of our 44th President. Yes, he is the President of the United States of America which includes people of all races, religions, and preferences. However, I need to have my moment as a black person to scream so loud that the ancestors hear and feel me, “My President is Black“!!!! (pause for a cartwheel in my office)  Leading up to the Inauguration, I could feel something in my soul rising. I look in the eyes of my black male relatives and friends and I now notice a real pride and ease that I’d never seen previously. I watch them mark his every move , scrutinize every word, and even admire his cool stroll and see themselves and know that they’re alright, more than that even. I listen at myself and female family and friends marvel at Michelle for being the bad woman that she is without apology . Us single girls joke that we’re just a Michelle waiting to meet our Barack. To quote 107 year old Mrs. Ann Nixon Cooper, I feel more like a real person. It’s a validation that I tried not to need, but obviously can’t deny. Before the eyes of the world is a story of struggle, ambitions, black love, family, and hope with a happy beginning and expectations for a great ending. I can tell my children (or at least my niece) of a real story of possibility where the characters look like them. That’s a hard concept to sell to people who don’t have that issue. All these feelings overflowed during yesterday’s ceremony. Rick Warren, Dianne Feinstein, and President Obama himself all spoke of the significance of his presidency in light of America’s racist past. I enjoyed Aretha taking My Country Tis of Thee to church, but in my heart I wanted to sing the black national anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing, at the top of my lungs and wouldn’t have even frowned on a praise break…lol. Rev. Joseph Lowery gave me a little of what I needed and while concluding his benediction let out a little ‘My President is Black’ pride of his own at the end of his speech. I understand Rev…  I think there may be quite a few similar expressions of irrepressible pride as time goes on.  All those that feel me scream, “My President is Black!!!!” (I hear you Jay-Z!)

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Reverse Racism?: White Comics on joking about Obama

MAUREEN DOWD did a wonderful piece recently for the NY Times about the challenge some white comedians and comic writers are facing when coming up with jokes and jabs about Barack Obama.  I was wondering just what monologue writers were going to do myself.  With so many of the people behind the pens being white and the public being well aware of that, it’s no surprise that there is increased sensitivity.  Who want’s to be labeled a racist?  Who hasn’t learned from the infamous New Yorker cover that satire is in the eye of the beholder?

I have a suggestion.  Hire some black writers.  That will do away with the double standard.  Black people have been trashing each other through comedy routines for decades…but we do it in love.  I mean, we have limits too, of course.  However, we know what a fine line there is between meaningless mockery and comedy.

My favorite quotes from the article:

– “It seems like a President Obama would be harder to make fun of than these guys,” I said.

“Are you kidding me?” Stewart scoffed.

Then he and Colbert both said at the same time: “His dad was a goat-herder!”

– Many of the late-night comics and their writers — nearly all white — now admit to The New York Times’s Bill Carter that because of race and because there is nothing “buffoonish” about Obama — and because many in their audiences are intoxicated by him and resistant to seeing him skewered — he has not been flayed by the sort of ridicule that diminished Dukakis, Gore and Kerry.

“There’s a weird reverse racism going on,” Jimmy Kimmel said.

– On Tuesday, Andy Borowitz satirized on that subject. He said that Obama, sympathetic to comics’ attempts to find jokes to make about him, had put out a list of official ones, including this:

“A traveling salesman knocks on the door of a farmhouse, and much to his surprise, Barack Obama answers the door. The salesman says, ‘I was expecting the farmer’s daughter.’ Barack Obama replies, ‘She’s not here. The farm was foreclosed on because of subprime loans that are making a mockery of the American dream.’ ”

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Obama Nom Acceptance Speech: Will you be watching history?

Come rain or shine Barack Obama will address the Democratic convention at Mile High before a sea of 75,000 to accept the Democratic Presidential nomination in a spectacular finale to his party’s convention next month.

The address by Obama, who hopes to be America’s first black president, will be lent added poignancy by dint of its scheduling on the 45th anniversary of civil rights icon Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech.

Will you be watching?  Do you consider this a pivotal, historical event?

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Hate group membership on the rise after Obama nomination

There should be no surprise that the possibility of an African American president would encourage membership in groups like the KKK that are blatantly anti-African American (anti-African, Jew, Gay, Catholic, Asian…etc. You know, haters in general.) The media has done some “research” on the trend. Take a look…

Hate Groups’ Newest Target: White Supremacists Report an Increase in Visits to Their Web Sites – Washington Post

Racist groups gaining members because of Obama: Hate experts reporting resurgence of activity by white supremacists – Florida Courier

Racist groups may exaggerate their reach
Kansas City Star

Never trust a Klansman to give accurate membership numbers.

So recent reports that Web-based hate group activities are up dramatically because of Barack Obama’s presidential run may not be the whole story.

Unfortunately, the Internet has given hate groups a convenient outlet to spread their vile attitudes. And no doubt the idea of the first black president has riled some mostly anonymous racists. Continue reading

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Barack Obama for President – Why not?

The DC Democratic primary is tomorrow and I guess it’s time to stop holding my peace. I’ve sat back and read commentary after commentary about why Obama isn’t black enough, experienced enough, how America isn’t ready enough for a black president, etc. Hello, Negro even asked the question, “Do We really want Obama to Win?” My answer, at least, is emphatically, YES! My question would be, why not and what are we afraid of? (Yes, ‘we’ Black Americans…I said it!). At the beginning of his campaign, Obama probably only had the public (black) support of Oprah and Chris Rock who seemed to have no problem seeing the trees from the forest in deciding to support him in his bid for the presidency. In February 2008, I see how that took courage as it appeared that there wasn’t an overwhelming sense of support from the black community in the beginning. Hell, prominent black elected officials seemed to lead the charge in the disapproval of his candidacy and early support of Hillary Clinton. It seems that as non-black Americans began to support Obama, black Americans gained more and more courage to believe. In November 2007, The Chicago Sun-Times quoted Michelle Obama as saying, “Black America will wake up and get it”. I think she understood that it may be hard for some of us to believe in the possibility of a black American president and given more time, we would find the strength to believe and not be afraid to vote for him. It seems she was right…slowly, but surely.

Maybe it’s me, but I would assume black people would at least give him the benefit of the doubt until he proved himself crazy or at least akin to Clarence Thomas or something… I thought it ingenious to ask black people if they were supporting Obama because he was black. What a guilt bestowed and what timing. What better way to make any of us who respected him as a candidate while feeling empowered as a black person feel guilty and be proud not to support him for that very reason? Were white people equally asked whether they’re voting for any of the other white candidates because they’re white? Better yet, were they asked if they decided not to vote for Obama because he was black? They were largely allowed to make that decision when they voted. 

For all the talk of Hillary Clinton having more experience than him, it is very clear that not too much separates the two policy wise. They’ve even admitted as such. At this point in the race, the democratic vote seems to hinge on voting for a woman or a black man. Today, Hillary Clinton visited the National Council of Negro Women’s headquarter in DC to court the black female vote which appears to be the real swing among the division in the black vote. Hello Negro even asked if black women felt  more inclined to vote for Hillary because she was a woman. I think Hillary understands that the gender split in the black vote alone could swing the race in her favor. The article addresses the prominent black wives that have decided to vote for her while their husbands support Obama.

In the end, for all the excuses given for not supporting Obama, please don’t miss the opportunity to vote for him because of some underlying fear or guilt. Don’t vote for him if you don’t like him. If you do like him and his vision for America and it makes you smile that his family resembles yours, there’s nothing wrong with that. In the words of Chris Rock, “You’d be real embarrassed if he won and you wasn’t down with it!”

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Toni Morrison backing Obama for REAL Black President

Toni Morrison, the author who dubbed Bill Clinton the nation’s “first black president”, has announced she is backing the man who would actually be the nation’s first black president, Barack Obama. In explanation Morrison wrote:

In addition to keen intelligence, integrity and a rare authenticity, you exhibit something that has nothing to do with age, experience, race or gender and something I don’t see in other candidates. That something is a creative imagination which coupled with brilliance equals wisdom.

Source: Richard Adams

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Do WE really want Obama to WIN?

Eugene Robinson’s piece in today’s Washington post, “Oprah the Believer” made me ask that question…WE being the black community as a whole. Are we really behind the idea…here and now…for 2008? Do we just like the idea…but think it should happen soon, but not this soon? What do you think that MOST black people really think about Obama winning the 2008 presidential race??

Is it foolish to think that a nation stained by centuries of slavery and racism is prepared to elect a black president? Rarely phrased so bluntly, that’s the central question posed by Barack Obama’s candidacy — especially for many African American voters, whose doubts are informed by having seen many an oasis turn out to be a mirage.

Oprah Winfrey, as is her wont, cut to the heart of the matter. Campaigning on Obama’s behalf this weekend, she echoed the words of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in offering permission to believe.

“Dr. King dreamed the dream,” Winfrey told a predominantly black crowd of 29,000 in Columbia, S.C. “But we don’t have to just dream the dream anymore. We get to vote that dream into reality.”

There are many in the African American establishment who consider Winfrey’s exhortation a bit of starry-eyed nonsense. There are senior black Democrats who can barely hide their exasperation at Obama’s success, which they see as a mortal threat to a Democratic victory in November. Andrew Young is the latest to go public with his pique, saying in remarks reported over the weekend that he wants Obama to be president, but not until 2016. If Obama somehow managed to win this time, Young said, he couldn’t possibly be effective: “To put a brother in there by himself is to set him up for crucifixion.”

Others of comparable stature have griped privately to me that this whole Obama thing is madness, that he can’t possibly win and that with a known quantity such as Hillary Clinton in the race, this is no time to go chasing rainbows. They point out that in the nation’s history we’ve elected only two black governors — Douglas Wilder in Virginia and Deval Patrick in Massachusetts. If Americans, in all these years, have only elected two black men to run a state, are they really going to elect a black man to run the whole country?

2 governors…dag and Patrick is kinda recent.  Makes you think.

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