Okay, so no surprise here, another racist comment hits the media and has touched off a firestorm of controversy.
Ralph Nader has accused Sen. Barack Obama of attempting to “talk white” and appealing to “white guilt” in his quest to win the White House.
Yeah, I know, crazy talk. But nevertheless, he said, so let’s get into it.
Nader for the most part is right about Obama “talking white,” but not for the reasons that he thinks.
Let’s be clear, all African-Americans “talk white,” some just better than others. Thanks to slavery and the capturing and removal of hundreds of thousands of African slaves from their homeland, none of us truly know our native language, we only know the Massuh’s language. Similar to the fact that we have for more the part adopted the Massuh’s religion as our own as well.
I am clear on that.
Onto the “white guilt.”
Nader said, “I mean, first of all, the number one thing that a black American politician aspiring to the presidency should be is to candidly describe the plight of the poor, especially in the inner cities and the rural areas, and have a very detailed platform about how the poor is going to be defended by the law, is going to be protected by the law and is going to be liberated by the law. Haven’t heard a thing.”
Nader also said Obama is making a concerted effort not to be “another politically threatening African-American politician.”
“He wants to appeal to white guilt. You appeal to white guilt not by coming on as black is beautiful, black is powerful. Basically, he’s coming on as someone who is not going to threaten the white power structure, whether it’s corporate or whether it’s simply oligarchic. And they love it. Whites just eat it up.”
Well, while there are some who would be quite fine with Obama focusing more on those issues that Nader brought up, that simply isn’t going to happen if we expect for Obama to be elected. As we saw with the Jeremiah Wright issue, white America isn’t interested in being reminded of their role in the current state of Black America, nor am I under the impression that they even understand their role or believe they have a role in the underdevelopment of Black America. They do not want to be faulted for the sins of their ancestors. Pretty much, they just want to move on and wish that Black folks would as well.
Quite frankly, I don’t think most white people carry any guilt for the years of slavery, torture, and abuse suffered by Blacks.
Obama and his campaign know this. They also know that Obama can’t get elected without the support of more than just Black America. So to that end, Obama has to appeal to more than just Blacks.
To that end, yes, Obama has to come off as non-threatening. Black men and women are among the most feared people in America and he knows that.
As much I am rooting for Obama, I often wonder if he’d be where he is if both his parents were Black.
If it comes down to appeasing Black America or appeasing the rest of America, Blacks are going to lose everytime.
We already saw that with the Wright situation. While most of us didn’t have a problem with what Wright said, the rest of America did. And in the end, Obama did what any politician in his position would do, he caved in.
Obama can’t be the Black president if he expects to win, he knows that and Nader knows that. But what Obama can do is champion a platform that reaches out to all poor and working class peoples, which most certainly includes Blacks. For example, the cost of food, gas, and housing affects more than just Blacks. Our jails are filled with Black men and women, but they’re also filled with Latino’s as well. You get the point.
Nader is just looking for his fifteen minutes, and he got it. Maybe now he can crawl back up under the rock he came out from under and disappear until November 6.