Tuesday, February 24, 2009

America's One-Way Conversation on Race

The Southern Avenger is back talking about a number of subjects related to the convo on race. Especially Eric Holder's comments last week, the esteem many blacks hold Dr. Martin Luther King, and the dreaded Confederate battle flag. I forget he even address how often and on whatever occasion that the term racism is used.

If race=thing, then what is a thing? Perhaps it's racist for a phone charger to be black. Perhaps an epithet of choice could be to call a person of color or a black person a phone charger. I'll admit that it's a bit absurd, but the only point to be made here is that to the Southern Avenger anything can become racist.

That is what concerns me. SC Rep. James Clyborn called opposition to Obama's stimulus racism, but it's entirely possible that this stimulus may not benefit blacks all that much. He probably says that because he's behind it all the way and probably should call it accordingly, but not call it racism when there is opposition.

What about Bobby Rush? He supported outgoing Gov. Rod Blagojevich's appointment of Roland Burris to warm the vacated Senate seat of Barack Obama. Even used some racially charged language to support this controversial appointment. The justification was to say that we need a black member of the US Senate and those who oppose his appointment (never mind that he was appointed by a recently arrested pol who attempted to put the Senate seat up for sale) were no different than a George Wallace. Keeping blacks out of institutions where they aren't represented.

Of course at this time we're seeing where this lead. There are renewed questions about how Burris got appointed. Indeed it has to be proven if in front of a state house panel investigating charges of impeachment against now former Gov. Blagojevich if Roland Burris has in fact committed perjury in his testimony to the panel. Bottom line is that in Burris' rush to get a black senator he may have connected one with the dubious legacy of a politician on the way out to the door and used an unfortunate tactic to get his way.

Sometimes racism can be a crutch. Especially for those who choose to do nothing with their lives believing that the larger society won't afford them any opportunities. Of course one has to wonder if they may be correct or they're just making excuses because they either don't want to work or go to school. The only point I make is that one must be careful about throwing the word racism around or at least believe the charge of racism.

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