Why America Isn’t Post-Racial
1. Post-racial was a term coined by mostly white people in media to make themselves feel better about America’s race problem. Sure, Barack Obama won the nomination, but I remember hearing PLENTY of racists who said they would either vote for McCain (because he was white) or Hillary (because she was white, but they’re liberal enough to give a woman a chance) because Barack Obama was half-white. (The way they talk about his mother was just appalling. White woman can never remove the “stain” of sleeping with a black man.) The media wanted so badly to be over race in America – which was effectively a sleeping elephant in a very tight living room – and hoped the country moved on without addressing it. They opened the front door and the creak awakened the elephant and it started kicking and ramming stuff in the room. Now, we have to clean up the living room. We have to gut it, repaint, resurface, and somehow chop up the elephant into manageable pieces for trash removal.
2. We aren’t post-racial because we have a 1/2 black President. Let’s let go of that idea. No leader of color being elected means that we’ve excelled beyond race. If the only person running is a person of color who shares your ideology, that means you’ll likely vote for them because you don’t want the other platform/ideology to win. Hence, why Mia Love and Tim Scott have white supporters – they’re from mostly conservative white areas and talk about black people and liberals like they’re pond scum, so of course those people will love them. The moment they mention slavery and segregation in our country’s history, those people turn on them for not letting go of the past.
3. We aren’t post-racial because many white people take the words “racist” and “institutionalized racism that benefits white people at all levels of society more than other races” as personal attacks against them. No one said, “All,” and no one said that it all applies to you. However, if you’re crying out like a dog getting hit by a rock, then, well…I hate to tell you this, but…you might not be post-racial. Work on it. We can’t grow together if you feel personally attacked whenever we bring up race being a factor in this country.
4. We still can’t talk about race comfortably. Black people balk at racism when they see it (and some don’t see it but apparently like looking for a fight). White people balk at racism because they don’t like being thought of as being as horrible as a slave owner or Strom Thurmond and Jesse Helms and Virginia Foxx. Again, we’ve all got to get comfortable with the rights and wrongs of race and what we get right and wrong with it.
5. We hardly had an “We’re all in this together” mentality as Americans before Obama’s election. What the heck makes you people think that we could just magically unite together after his election? Was there an alien invasion that made us examine our lives? Get real. Since we’ve never fully talked about race, embraced it, or tried to approach is pragmatically in this country, we have our work cut out for us. Why does it seem that race is “worse” under Obama? One reason and one reason alone.
People are just more vocal about it now and it’s more in the open. It was always there, but just stayed hidden and buried to make nice with everyone. I say let’s excise it and dress the wound. We’ve got to heal, America. Stop running from it.
(I mean, I still ain’t got my reparations in the form of a $20,000 tax credit, so, no, we aren’t yet post-racial. Free money would make me a lot happier about it, though.)