Two Nations: Black and White Separate, Hostile, Unequal; how do We Overcome this?
Will Race Determine the 2008 Presidential Election?
By Fahim A. Knight-EL
This writer of late has been intensely watching the American presidential election between Senator John McCain, the white Republican candidate versus Senator Barack Obama, the black Democratic candidate. This writer and others had witness Senator Obama early on winning the Iowa Caucus and this writer must admit initially he was not optimistic about Senator Obama’s candidacy and was really a bit shocked that he had won a white state like Iowa in the democratic primaries. He won because the predominately white electorate had overlooked race and even turned back a popular former president’s wife in Senator Hillary Clinton who was heavily politically tied to the shakers and movers, as well as being connected within the Beltline and outside the Beltline.
But no one should be fooled by Senator Obama’s political ascension; it has been carefully crafted and shrewdly orchestrated by Henry Kissinger, Rockefellers and heavily financed by the Rothschilds. Many black Americans have no idea that there are some unseen and hidden powerful entities that are guiding the success of their candidate, Senator Barack Obama and in reality, the majority of the American whites have also been duped by these same entities leading them to believe that their race—white skin gives them a sense of entitlement and privilege; this is one of the slickest ploys ever devised, the divide and conquer scheme—we fight each other and the true enemy is laughing all the way to the bank. (Reference: Gary Allen and Larry Abraham: “None Dare Call it Conspiracy”).
Andrew Hacker in his monumental book titled, “Two Nations: Black and White Separate, Hostile, Unequal” stated, “RACE HAS BEEN an American obsession since the first Europeans sighted "savages" on these shores. In time, those original inhabitants would be subdued or slaughtered, and finally sequestered out of view. But race in America took on a deeper and more disturbing meaning with the importation of Africans as slaves. Bondage would later be condemned as an awful injustice and the nation's shame, even as we have come to acknowledge the stamina and skill it took to survive in a system where humans could be bought and sold and punished like animals. Nor are these antecedents buried away in the past. That Americans of African origin once wore the chains of chattels remains alive in the memory of both races and continues to separate them”.
Hacker continues, “Black Americans are Americans, yet they still subsist as aliens in the only land they know. Other groups may remain outside the mainstream-some religious sects, for example-but they do so voluntarily. In contrast, blacks must endure a segregation that is far from freely chosen. So America may be seen as two separate nations. Of course, there are places where the races mingle. Yet in most significant respects, the separation is pervasive and penetrating. As a social and human division, it surpasses all others-even gender-in intensity and subordination.” (Reference: Andrew Hacker; “Two Nations: Black and White Separate, Hostile, Unequal” pg. 3).
Senator Hillary Clinton’s husband former President Bill Clinton has always enjoyed a high level of respectability amongst African Americans in which was almost equated to him having celebrity status within the black community. Although, this writer could never understand the infatuation blacks had toward President Clinton. He after all, along with Senator Newt Gengrich (R-Georgia) former Speaker of the House and the Republican reactionary Congress in the 1990s went on a vicious campaign against the poor of America. These vicious entities inevitable blamed and scapegoat the collapse of America on the poor (women and families) people who were receiving Aid For Dependent Children, which led to a rancorous political assault against Human Services and social programs that benefited the needy and the poor of America. President Clinton justified these governmental programs revisions in the name of siding with the Republicans to better manage so-called big government and the poor became expendable and vulnerable under the eight (8) year reign of the Clinton Administration.
These budget cuts would trickle down to hurt poor blacks, poor Latinos and poor whites; this is the same President Bill Clinton that gave greater way to United States Prison Industrial Complex in which more black men became incarcerated under the Democrat Clinton than under the Republican President George Herbert Walker Bush. Thus, not only that, it was President Bill Clinton that established and signed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that eventually led to American companies heading south of the border to exploit Developing Nations like Mexico in which devastated the domestic employment market inside the country and America has since turned our corporate lifeblood over to Wal-Mart and covertly deemed this as the new 21st Century industry of America. What a pity; does anyone else see these scams?
I do not accept the premises that Democrats are the friends of the poor and/or the Republicans are the enemies of the poor; no both parties are agents of the rich and neither has giving anything to poor and oppressed people. Here is the contradiction, we the taxpayers of America just took on some of the biggest welfare recipients in the history of American politics, as welfare clients of the taxpayers—some of the largest Banking and Financial institutions in the world; we gifted wrapped these den of thieves $750 billion dollars popular known as the bailout or the new language rescue package, which will eventually cost the American taxpayers over three trillion dollars in the long term.
Now! That’s some real welfare that is being orchestrated by Federal Reserve and the Central Bankers and its puppet the United States Treasury Department low-level operatives Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. How about this one; the billions of dollars the U.S, taxpayers are mandated to pay for Israel in support of reactionary Middle Eastern Foreign Policy is another big welfare ticket? How about this one; the billions of dollars the taxpayers are being burden with in our imperialistic and oppressive military actions in Afghanistan and Iraq, which amounts to stealing heroin and oil for the Bush Family. You see welfare is a relative term and it doesn’t always apply to the poor. No, the poor people are ones who can not find viable employment because our government has outsourced American economic business to Twain, China, Vietnam, Mexico, India, and other poor developing nations because they can work these people for slave wages and reap huge profits. Yes, NAFTA commenced under President Bill Clinton and this Democrat was responsible for this Chess Board move. (Reference: Eustace Mullins; “The Secrets of the Federal Reserve”).
Why do not we demand that our leadership rearrange their political priorities and invest in American education, which has been so neglected? Our most precious and valuable economy and commodity is the future of our children. This is a real NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUE. Here is a homework assignment for my readers; thus, unless you understand who rules the world, it will be difficult for you to assess and evaluate the political, economic, and social issues that truly concern all of humanity. Please research these three groups the Bilderbergers, Council on Foreign Relations, and the Trilateral Commission; these are the real culprits not the poor and oppressed. (Reference: John Coleman; “Conspirators Hierarchy: The Story of the Committee of 300”).
This writer wants to go on record to say, he doesn’t necessary support Senator Barack Obama or his political views (but in this case he might be the lesser of two evils) because he has been co-opted and is a puppet for some of the most powerful political interest groups in America and the world; just as his so-called political nemesis and counterpart Senator John McCain. This writer recently attended a local committee action forum in his community and this middle aged Caucasian woman stood-up and stated African Americans were supporting Senator Obama just because he was black. This writer felt insulted and intellectually denigrated by such a naïve and stereotypical assertion. This writer deemed the statement to be racist in scope and intent; although the remark in itself was not laced with overt venom or possessing a sense of hatred bigotry. But it was the subliminal decoded language that spoke to the four hundred fifty (450) years of unresolved racism in America. (Reference: C. Eric Lincoln; “Surviving Race and Place in America”).
Perhaps my feelings were being led and motivated more by a historical stimuli (and may be even an overreaction) as opposed to a well thought out cognizant assessment of this woman’s words. This woman’s allege racial inference had put me in an emotional state of being both angered and disarrayed—into mental frenzy. It took everything this writer had to gather and collect himself; this writer then asked himself was this woman attempting to inject race into the political discussion and was it an appeal to the dominant culture which has been shaped and structured on race and did she understand that when everything else fails and the dust settles in American politics; there is always old reliable—RACE? Thus, was her comments rooted in a perhaps much more deeply seated psychology of tradition; having its origins steeped in the racial dynamics that we had come to associate with old racial attitudes of yesterday and was this a mere play on the fears of the white electorate? (Reference: “Naim Akbar; “Breaking The Chains of Psychological Slavery).
Although, she did not have the bully-pulpit of a Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity—she was local, but was her statement and sentiment representative of the views of the dominant white community at-large? But this writer also wondered was this an example, of someone playing the race card in reverse in which blacks and other ethnic minorities have been accused of playing throughout the history of America. However, there would be no race card to play if a system and a culture were not built on Racism and racist precepts that created a culture of inequality and injustice in which often the dominant society set the rules in American culture—skin color and ethnicity have always determined how resources would be distributed and allocated. (Reference: Earl Ofari Hutchinson; “The Assassination of The Black Male Image”).
The problem this writer is having with this election is how quick we develop political amnesia; from 1865 the majority of African Americans were affiliated with the Republican Party, the party of Abraham Lincoln, the so-called great emancipator. African American from 1932 beginning with the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt to the present day 2008 have overwhelmingly voted for white democratic candidates on the national, state, and local levels. This writer has ascertained that ninety-two (92) percent of African Americans are registered democrats. This writer personally thinks this political predicament and strategy to be insane, this writer doesn’t know if you can call it a strategy—this is more of a faulty political strategy; in particular in a two party system. It is political suicide because, it allows the Democratic party to take the black vote for granted—they understand the political numbers being just an eight (8) percent differential and this does not create the type of pendulum swing to generate enough external political leverage which to keep the Democratic Party honest. (Reference: Claud Anderson; “PowerNomics: The National Plan to Empower Black America”).
Politicians only respect an electorate that can impose political consequences, but those above numerical variables based on registered party affiliation do not pose an equitable number balance, which could alter or derail a candidate potential to being elected, hypothetically if forty (40) percent of blacks were registered Republicans and the other sixty (60) percent were Democrats this would automatically create a political leverage. They then could definitely command more political respect from this two party system, in particular from the Democratic Party who for seventy-five (75) years has taking the black vote for granted and would definitely build unimaginable credibility with the Republican Party. If African Americans are going to effectively play American style politics, this will require and mandate them to devise a new political strategy and tactic that moves beyond being a majority one bloc political party, which has had its benefits at times and simultaneously can be politically detrimental. (Reference: Claud Anderson; “Black Labor White Wealth”).
This reliable Democratic electorate bloc has put many past presidential candidates over the top and now this same black electorate is being accused of practicing racial politics because blacks are supporting a Democratic candidate for president who just happens to be an African American. The status quo is creating this double standard and as diversionary tactic to possible racially incite whites to the determent of derailing Senator Obama’s candidacy by appealing to old racial stereotypes that perhaps lie just beneath the surface. Senator John McCain and company, fully understands the numbers which Senator Obama can not win the office of U.S. President with the black vote alone; it is going to take a broad base racial coalition for him to pull this thing off. (Reference: Tim Wise; “White Like Me: Reflections on Race From a Privileged Son”).
Lets fast forward to 2008 blacks have been very consistent in their tradition of backing Democratic candidates, how quickly do we forget that there were two black candidates that ran as presidential candidates in 2004—Al Sharpton, a democrat and Alan Keys, a Republican. Sharpton, a former New York activist who ran for Senator and Mayor of New York and was unsuccessful in those bids, but had established credibility as a Civil Rights leader and founder of the National Action Network, which champions black grassroots causes. Sharpton ascended and evolved to become the new face and voice of Black leadership; replacing Reverend Jesse Jackson, as the so-called appointed public leader of black America.
This writer has always taking issue when the dominant culture elevates a black leader to so-called chosen status and as a single spokesperson for an entire race, as though we are a monolithic people. But nevertheless, during the 2004 Presidential elections Al Sharpton ran against the Massachusetts Senator John Kerry during the Democratic primaries and for those who do not know Sharpton is African American. Sharpton perhaps did not garnish five (5) percent of the black vote, but this is what made that woman I spoke about early in this writing statement of blacks are backing and supporting Senator Obama just because he is black as being more asinine, unfair and insulting. This writer believes that the black electorate is a lot more political astute than to be voting for Senator Obama just because he is an African American.
This writer personally likes the message and platform of former Democratic Congressional woman Cynthia McKinney who is running for the office of United States President as an Independent Green Party candidate and as a Third Party Candidate. She was uncompromising as a two term Congresswoman out of Georgia and she is very clear on the issues and is not and bought and paid for as the two corporate candidates. Congresswoman McKinney is black, but most blacks will not be casting votes for her because in their political astuteness they have reasoned that to vote for her is a throwaway vote. This writer may not agree nor share in their political disposition, but perhaps they see Senator Obama as having the best chance to upend Senator John McCain and for them it is a sign of political intelligence and it has nothing to do with race. (Reference: Ian Inaba; “American Blackout” a documentary film).
Moreover, the pundits fail to take into account that just four years ago blacks demonstrated that they were politically savvy and just do not vote a long racial lines and this was no more proof positive than when the black electorate turned back Al Sharpton, one of the most well known and prominent black Civil Rights leaders in recent American history and chose to eventually put their huge bloc numbers behind presidential nominee Senator John Kerry. This is what the political pundits in 2008 do not understand; this was a perfect example, how race and nationality played absolutely no factor and did not influence their endorsement strategy, but it is not to suggest that these variables haven’t inspired the black electorate unlike any other presidential campaign in the history of America.
Yes, Senator Obama’s candidacy has created excitement and enthusiasm amongst African American which is undeniable—most whites could never understand this euphoria because it is rooted in the history and culture of an oppressed people who were disenfranchised, denied Civil Rights, and human rights from 1555-1964 until the passing of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and 1965 Voting Rights Acts, but before the passing of these two pieces of monumental legislation, Jim Crow reigned high in America. So this writer must say he can reckon with their enthusiasm and excitement, for them it is a very passionate historical moment. For example, this writer has an elderly African American neighbor who is about eighty (80) years of age and he experienced the era of Jim Crow where race determined the political, economic and social reality of African American people in the United States. (Reference: Juan Williams; “Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years 1954-1965).
The Jim Crow culture and segregation were very painful for blacks to endure—there were racial violence in the form of lynching and outright racial motivated murders, separate but equal policies was the law of the land—white only public accommodations, whites and blacks could not share the same bathrooms or attend the same schools. My neighbor as he recalled this history became teary-eyed (these were tears of both pain and joy) and viewed the possibility of Senator Obama becoming the first black president in the history of the United States as being monumental in his psyche; this same view probably resonates with millions of others just like him. This presidential election in 2008 makes it all worth the hell they caught fighting to achieve freedom, justice and equality for the African American race in 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, etc. (C. Vann; “The Strange Career of Jim Crow”).
This writer to a larger extent do not expect the dominant culture to fully understand my elderly neighbor sentiments and the overall collective excitement that African Americans are experiencing. He understood how far our nation had come in the last forty-three (43) years and the road still yet to travel. Senator Obama’s achievements would not have been possible today if it were not for the untold sacrifices that were made by African American freedom fighters of yesterday. Racism would have been the barrier that would have curtailed Senator Obama’s high political aspirations. Lastly, my neighbor told me, he never thought in his life time that he would live to see a black man become president of the United States. This writer truly understood what this presidential race meant to this gentleman and millions like him all over America. This represent breaking through a racial glass ceiling that has stood for over 250 yeers in which this exclusive club has been open to white male elite only. (Reference: Derrick Bell; “Faces At The Bottom of the Well: The Permanence of Racism”).
Perhaps African Americans and all America have something to celebrate, which is we are getting closer to the beautiful word of the Declaration of Independence that is so eloquently stated, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Dr. Martin Luther King preached that a man should not be judge by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character.
This past week Senator Obama received a huge endorsement from former Secretary of State Colin Powell. Secretary State Powell’s endorsements lend further credibility to Senator Obama’s bid to become the United States Commander-in-Chief. Secretary of State Colin Powell crossed party lines and gave his endorsement to Senator Obama, a Democrat and may be this endorsement is telling us something about the vulnerability of Senator McCain’s campaign. Thus, some of Senator Obama’s critics have tried to deduce Powell’s endorsement of Senator Obama to the lowest common dominator—race both men happens to be African Americans. This again is insulting and condescending and to say the least racist.
I believe Powell is above voting strictly on racial lines and he has legitimate political history to back him up. Secretary of State Powell served as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Bush 1 and would later serve as Secretary of State under George W. Bush II and none of these pundits injected race as a variable during these prior assignments; it was not even a thought Powell was considered a good American (a well decorated professional soldier) and as a conservative Republican. However, this writer thinks Powell’s endorsement of Senator Obama was out of sheer political motivation and nothing else; Powell is a very intelligent man and I believe he is his own man and believe me, his endorsement of Senator Obama was not based on the race indicator. This writer thinks Powell’s endorsement was strictly out of political expediency.
Powell recognizes and fully understands that the Bush Administration has lost a lot of credibility domestically and internationally due their reactionary domestic and foreign policy. This writer believes that when Powell decided not to return for a second four (4) year tenure as Secretary of the State under the Bush Administration; it was evident to me that he left with some differences with the Bush Administration and his departure attest that they parted ways based on those differences. Powell endorsing Senator Obama represented a clear attempt to break away from his past relationship with the good ole boys— under George Bush and the Republican Party and the politics as usual syndrome, which have created a political mess in the last eight (8) years and has even blemished his own name and career.
This new beginning of sought would allow Secretary Powell to perhaps regain some personal and political credibility amongst the American electorate; after-all in 2003, it was Powell speaking from the United Nations and publicly made the case of why the United States needed to invade Iraq and whether or not he received faulty intelligence relative to Iraq having Weapons of Mass Destruction is debatable. This writer does not trust him, he is only interested in legitimizing himself to once again recapture the image as a man of integrity and veracity, but Senator Obama and Secretary Powell are two political animals and they could use each other toward furthering each others political aspirations. (Reference: Richard A. Clarke: “Against All Enemies: Inside America’s War on Terror”).
No, this relationship and endorsement has nothing to do with race, it was strictly based on politics. Powell isn’t bit more a Democrat than the man on the moon (and is not a bit more concerned about black issues than the Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan) and one should not read more into than what it is worth; Secretary Powell did not say, he was switching political parties. It was only an endorsement and perhaps African Americans can learn a lesson or two from Powell’s decision, which is, it’s best to vote issues and not parties and allow the race to get the best deal they can get from either party—Democrat, Republican, and/or Independent. This was a courageous political move by Powell and it is steeped in valuable political lessons. (Reference: Michael Eric Dyson: “Race Rules: Navigating The Color Line).
Fahim A. Knight-EL Chief Researcher for KEEPING IT REAL THINK TANK located in Durham, NC; our mission is to inform African Americans and all people of good will of the pending dangers that lie ahead; as well as decode the symbolisms and reinterpret the hidden meanings behind those who operate as invisible forces, but covertly rules the world. We are of the belief that an enlighten world will be better prepared to throw off the shackles of ignorance and not be willing participants for the slaughter. Our MOTTO is speaking truth to power. Fahim A. Knight can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
STAY AWAKE UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN,
Fahim A. Knight-EL