Race is still an issue

PHOTO: The Palin family

While I was out of town, our old “Roundup Guru,” Jordan, forwarded me a story he thought I should write a post about. Since I’m still recovering from the vacation, I’m going to take his advice, even if it’s a few days late.

The article Jordan forwarded is “This is Your Nation on White Privilege” by Tim Wise at Red Room. Read the entire article, if you get the chance. Otherwise, here are some of the juicy bits:

White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you or your parents, because “every family has challenges,” even as black and Latino families with similar “challenges” are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay. …

White privilege is when you can claim that being mayor of a town smaller than most medium-sized colleges, and then Governor of a state with about the same number of people as the lower fifth of the island of Manhattan, makes you ready to potentially be president, and people don’t all piss on themselves with laughter, while being a black U.S. Senator, two-term state Senator, and constitutional law scholar, means you’re “untested.”? …

White privilege is being able to be a gun enthusiast and not make people immediately scared of you.? …

White privilege is being able to make fun of community organizers and the work they do–like, among other things, fight for the right of women to vote, or for civil rights, or the 8-hour workday, or an end to child labor–and people think you’re being pithy and tough, but if you merely question the experience of a small town mayor and 18-month governor with no foreign policy expertise beyond a class she took in college and the fact that she lives near Russia, you’re somehow being mean, or even sexist.? …

White privilege is being able to give a 36-minute speech in which you talk about lipstick and make fun of your opponent, while laying out no substantive policy positions on any issue at all, and still manage to be considered a legitimate candidate, while a black person who gives an hour speech the week before, in which he lays out specific policy proposals on several issues, is still criticized for being too vague about what he would do if elected.

Like I said, read the entire article. There is an incredible double standard being applied to the Republican and Democratic presidential tickets. Stating it as starkly as Tim Wise does here might just be the best way to achieve some level of fairness in this election and perhaps for everyone.

Flickr photo by er3465


  1. Ian

    Um… what? How is any of this racism exactly?

  2. Chris

    You don’t think the extra scrutiny and eggshells Obama has to walk on have anything to do with race?

  3. Ian

    I just don’t think any of the things listed here are racism. Its because he is the opponent of the Republicans and they need to attack him and defend themselves. Yeah they have double standards and no integrity, but I don’t think it has anything to do with race, or at least the things listed above. I mean, doesn’t that conclusion sound a whole lot like: “you’re somehow being mean, or even sexist.? …”

  4. Daimao

    I do agree that many of these points are simply double standards brought on because of Obama being an opponent of the Republicans and not really having to do with race. However there are indeed several points in the article that do point out the racism and racial divide in this country, like the one above about teen pregnancies, and the prep school snob point and more, although I don’t think those points should really have anything to do with this election.

    The points about Rev. Wright and black anger and talking about the history of racism towards Africans are spot-on in my opinion. I certainly hope people continue to discuss these issues after the election season, because they are crucial and really need to be addressed however possible.

    Also Palin’s other teenage daughter is kinda hot in that picture.

  5. Ian

    I don’t think our culture typically applauds teen pregnancies, be they from a white girl or a black girl. That is what is so baffling about Palin’s daughter. The country normally would be jumping all over that, but it creates such a huge amount of cognitive dissonance for everyone. Spineless Republicans feel the need to defend their candidates, no matter how bad they are. The media wants to jump on it, but they feel like they are supposed to take the higher ground and rightfully think that Palin’s private life is out of bounds (like they should’ve done with Bill Clinton). It feels like “kicking a puppy” to portray a teenage girl as a slut to the country, especially when the country only knows about her because of her mother and nothing that she has done.

    I’m glad you bring up Rev. Wright because its really the biggest case of racism in this election. Palin’s church has had some pretty intolerant views and tons of absurd ones (“pray for this pipeline!”) and we aren’t calling her out on that.

  6. Chris

    So you’re saying I should have picked better examples?!

  7. Ian

    Yeah probably. Especially with the recent video showing Palin’s pastor trying to protect her from witches. Not metaphorical witches. Real witches.

    Witches. B****es.