Dems will paint the White House black

By George Ploss

In case you haven’t heard, Senator Barack Obama from our great state of Illinois, is running for president. His historic speech on the steps of the old state capitol clearly alluding to Lincoln’s famous “House Divided” speech brought thousands of spectators and reporters from all over the world to hear the him clearly (or more clearly) define his reason(s) for seeking the presidency and rally support for his run for office. He gave a tight, safe, goosebump-giving rally cry that attacked just about everything we know as bad in government. He spinned his lack of experience as a requisite for mass change in the Washington beltway and craftily paralleled his plight as an African-American candidate to Lincoln’s speech on slavery.

The brilliance (and ignorance) of our representative democracy is the fact that it moves with the people, and we are moving forward at a firm pace. It doesn’t always keep up, but it moves forward. Obama preaches change, and I mean he really preaches. Never has an African-American running for the Presidency received such mass support from so many Americans from so many different walks of life. But how long will it last?

Now that it’s official, the scrutiny will be more vicious, as it should be for any presidential candidate. The microscope lens will auto-focus on any hint of potential controversy because of his fame, stature and ethnicity and just how different Obama is from status quo.

His fellow democratic candidate Delaware Senator Joseph R. Biden poorly stated that Obama was “The first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy” to run for President. Not to focus too much on his ignorant and stupid comment but Biden, like many other Americans, see him as a phenomenon simply because he’s black. This palpable insinuation of inferiority coming from a “progressive” candidate who’s house resides in the “progressive” party just goes to show that we still have a long way to go.

Comic and frequent guest on Real Time with Bill Maher D.L. Hughley shared his views by stating “It’s like weight loss. The last few pounds are the hardest to get rid of. It’s the last vestiges of racism that are hard to get rid of.”

This phenomenon of the “articulate black man” is part of the sparkle that shines in the eyes of those who admire Obama both white and black because of the lack of exposure that “mainstream, articulate, neat, good-looking” African-Americans receive in the global media. Usually when we see black folk on TV they’re pouring champagne over women while rapping about their spinners or they’re suspects in a violent crime on the evening news.

However unfair this may be, it’s the African-American world media face and Obama refreshingly transcends that. Whatever his politics, he’s a positive African-American figure but, fortunately for his campaign and unfortunately for African-Americans, he is removed from those who will vote for him the most, African-Americans. Even though there is a public disconnection, the path(s) lead to the same place: full American representation in the Oval Office. Sadly, this shows that America is ready for a black president.

“The genius of our founders is that they designed a system of government that could be changed,” Obama said in the beginning of his speech. On so many levels this was the most important part of his speech.

Lincoln’s “House Divided” Speech represented a critical polarizing climate in America, similar to the current state of our union. After the bloodiest war in American history, Lincoln gave his life and united the nation. The unity wasn’t robust, but it was nonetheless a strong step forward. Let us pray and hope that our first African-American president will not share the same grave fate of the greatest president of the United States. I didn’t agree with all of Lincoln’s politics, especially his personal stance on slavery, but he was our leader when our country’s integral self was being attacked by itself. So let Obama be that man, that leader that thrusts us into a new generation of positive political discourse, that conscious of citizen responsibility and the shining of a currently tarnished country. One Love.