I asked for comments, and I got one that I felt was important enough that I didn't want to just bury it in the comments section. I am excited that, even in disagreements, there is honest political dialogue happening!!
Aimee, you want comments! Isn't your decision to vote for Obama based on a speech he gave about race just as shallow as a woman voting for Hillary because she is a woman. You want to talk openly about race, great! Over the years, there have been multiple opportunities in this community to do just that. Many that have not gone well, mostly because I think many people are confused about what they are trying to accomplish with these conversations, people come to these discussions from many different maturity and experiencial levels of dealing with the topic. As a white person, I agree, racism has gone no where. It definitely still exists, needs to be addressed in a gentle way as to not scare white people off, who have the privilege in the first place ... but to vote for a guy just because he made a speech about race! Do you honestly think that if a white candidate sat in a church with a preacher for years, who condemned and ridiculed people of color, and then while trying to run for a political office was called out on it, and they said well I don't agree with his comments, but we are still friends and he is like family to me, that that would fly!!! Hell NO ... all hell would break loose. They would be labeled a racist and in my mind would be a racist to have tolerated in any way shape or form that kind of speaking. If we are going to have open diagolues about race, then we need to have an open playing field that is equal for everyone to speak and to be judged on the same criteria in terms of their comments. It can't be a person of color making rude, obnoxious comments about white people being acceptable, and white people saying anything about people of color automatically be labled as racist and shunned. I have seen it happen over and over in this town. There is deep need for talks about race, in a respectful manner. But back to the issue of president. I won't vote for someone because they made a good speech about Race ... for gosh sakes, our economy is a mess, our country is at war, and it is getting worse again. Our own people are dying due to lack of health care. Yes, let's talk about Race, but not necessarily vote for him for president for that reason, he made a good speech. Start a discussion group. But vote for someone who can turn this country around. We are in deep shit. You are not talking to yourself.....!!!!!!!!!!
March 30, 2008 9:36 AM
I appreciate your comments. This is exactly the kind of dialogue that I think is needed, not just here in Flint, but across our nation.
You are absolutely right, our country is in deep shit. On those issues you mentioned, I have not seen a significant difference between Barak and Hillary. Neither one is advocating for a Universal Healthcare plan as is needed, but they are both proposing improvements to our current system. Both have said that they want out of Iraq, although I'm not quite sure of the details of what they are each proposing. The economy sucks. I'll say it again...the economy sucks. I have no idea what either of them are proposing to fix it. This incentive package that we are all supposed to get just for filing our taxes this year, will barely scratch the surface. I already have it spent to pay down credit cards with way too high of interest rates. My own fault.
Did I mention that the economy sucks? However, I have job security because I work with juvinile offenders within a child welfare system that is broken and a criminal justice system that is criminal and not just. I also have no idea how they each plan (if they plan) to fix those things. I'm also unsure about how, exactly, they will improve schools and increase school funding so that maybe some of the kids that I meet are more likely to get excited about escaping into literature than escaping into ludes or cocaine or alcohol or ...
There is so much about our country that needs fixing. My voice in the selection of the democratic nominee, for example. But since I live in Michigan, my voice and my vote (or not) are irrelevant.
No matter who is nominated for the Democratic ticket, I will vote for them!!!! As I said before, both candidates are remarkable and have the possibility of making the world better through their presidancy.
However, I favor Obama because I have heard Clinton qualify her call for change to imply that qualitative change is impossible within our present political system. I need someone more optimistic, or perhaps even naive about the so-called impossibility of changing the system.
By the way, if you click on the link to the right, you can hear one of Rev. Wright's so-called racist speeches, where he calls on our government right after 9/11, not to jump into a reaction of violence and terror, but instead, to take time to look within ourselves as individuals and as a country to find a better, more peaceful response. Listen to it. Nothing anti-white about it.
Also, after reading your comment, I found an interview with Geraldine Ferraro that was done after the so-called race comment. I stand corrected. I do stand by my statement of feeling that she was no racist, but when I heard her explaination, I (and, I think the media and most listening to that media) had it wrong. She wasn't saying it out of ignorance, but in a spirit of solidarity. Watch the video. Interesting.
I still am crossing my fingers for Obama.
About the race thing....I'm not supporting Obama just because he is black. Nor am I supporting him because he preached great rhetoric about the racial divide in this country. I am supporting him because I believe that in making that speech, he spoke out honestly about something that he really believes in. He didn't just bury his head in the sand or make excuses or empty promises not to respect his mentor any more. He responded honestly to some dishonest criticism. I believe that the moment that he decided to speak out, he made a decision to follow his heart and not the pollsters predictions. I believe that in making that speech, he showed bravery beyond what most politicians are capable of. I believe that through this speech, he indirectly challenged ALL Americans, regardless of color, to look honestly at their fears and anger, acknowlege them and move beyond them to a place of healing. I hope Obama wins the nomination because he was honest enough to step up and be open about who he is and the difficulties that this nation needs to face together.
I still am crossing my fingers for Obama.
Did I mention that our electoral system also needs to be fixed? Not just hanging chads and malfunctioning machines and racist exclusion at the polls, but we need to eliminate the electoral college altogether!! In this day and age of computers, telephones and airline travel, we should each be able to speak and vote for ourselves without an intermediary. It's kind of like going to confession with a priest who can't hear, but automatically tells everyone to say three hail marys and call the doctor in the morning.
That is one issue that I haven't heard any politician advocate for.