American elections are torrid affairs that last far too long and often do not address pressing matters that could give voters a reason to stay engaged in the electoral process. The upcoming general election threatens to be an exercise in divisiveness from Republicans who yearn to take the country back, but not for the reason they would have most Americans believe. All of the Republican presidential hopefuls have, at some point or another, appealed to perceived racial purity that existed at the nation’s founding and are overtly resurrecting Aryan sensibilities of many Americans. In lieu of any real issues to challenge President Obama, Republicans are counting on winning over racially and economically insecure white voters who perceive the first African American president as an interloper who does not belong in the White House and to a larger extent, the United States.
The Republicans have not assailed the president overtly for his racial make-up, but they have engaged in associative race baiting by contending that all African Americans are lazy interlopers who are robbing white Americans of their rightful place of privilege as the real Americans. Their racial bigotry appeals to fear, anger, and insecurity of white Americans who are repulsed at the thought of four more years of a usurper sitting in the Oval Office, and use “white fear, white anxiety, and white rage to try and defeat Barack Obama.” The racists in the Republican ranks are despicable, but there is a reason they have to resort to portraying the president, by association, with unsavory African Americans; they have nothing else whatsoever to protest about the president’s policies.
Willard Romney may have revealed the point that Republicans have nothing to criticize the President for except his race in a campaign commercial where a narrator says, “Beating Obama is the most important issue.” Is it so important because President Obama raised taxes several times? Or is it that he has been antagonistic to business? Perhaps it is because the President nationalized Wall Street and the banking industry, mining and manufacturing, the oil industry, or seized all private businesses. Did the President disband the military or ban and seize all private firearms? Does the Affordable Health Act institute socialized medicine and eliminate the healthcare insurance industry? Of course, the answer to all of those ridiculous questions is no, but they prove a point.
Republicans have no real issue to challenge President Obama on and instead they portray him, by association, as a lazy foreigner who is not one of us real, racially-superior white Americans. Romney’s slogan “we ought to keep America American” is a slogan straight out KKK nativist doctrine and is meant to cause resentment for African Americans; especially President Obama. That is the only reason why “beating Obama is the most important issue.” But you might say; Romney is not a racist. Yes he is; he was 30 years-old before the Mormon cult lifted the “Blacks are cursed” doctrine according to a “Doctrine and Covenants” revelation in 1978.
Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum overtly accused African Americans of being lazy and stealing money from white, real Americans over the past month and Gingrich in particular ramped up the racially bigoted rhetoric during the South Carolina debate. It is not coincidence that Gingrich made such racially inflammatory remarks in a state that still flies the Confederate Flag as a matter of course. Gingrich did not have to mention President Obama because without any other issues to challenge, all any Republican candidate has to do is point at the African American sitting in the Oval Office. Republicans are laying the racial groundwork now because later in the campaign they can remind angry white voters that “those people” are not like us and “one of them” wants to stay in the White House; so, as Romney’s ad says, “beating Obama is the most important issue.” The Republican issue is not about beating Obama; it is about beating the African American.
The Republicans cannot assail the President on jobs because polls demonstrate that Americans know the GOP has obstructed all manner of job creation efforts and the stimulus that created millions of jobs and saved the American auto industry. Jobless claims reached a four-year low last week and there has been a slow, but steady rise in private sector hiring; no thanks to Republicans. They are also in trouble with voters who were promised that Republicans’ highest priority during the lead-up to the 2010 midterm elections was “jobs, jobs, jobs.” The Republicans spent the entire first session of the 112th Congress blocking job creation plans, assaulting women’s right to choose, cutting spending for programs that every American depends on, and nearly causing a credit default.
Barack Obama’s presidency is a black eye to Republicans who have sought to obstruct economic recovery at every turn, and his successes leave them little option but to attack him for being an African American. Oh, it is true that they are not overtly accusing him of being lazy and stealing white people’s money for himself, but they are accusing him of stealing white people’s money to give to “his people.” That is Santorum and Gingrich’s message and it is meant for the segment of the population that are white supremacists and unfortunately, there are many and they are predominately Republican voters.
This election is going to be about the economy and income inequality, and Republicans lose on all counts. So they have begun the race baiting now to demean the President by racial association later in the campaign. Racists will not consider any of President Obama’s accomplishments that helped every American because their hate deprives them of basic objectivity. Instead they will remember that all African Americans are lazy and not like us because Republicans will have hammered them mercilessly with racially-bigoted remarks and they will do anything to prevent “one of them” from residing in a place reserved for rich white males.
Fortunately, most Americans are not vile racists and they understand that President Obama’s policies saved the economy and kept America safe, and that Republicans did everything possible to lavish more riches on the wealthy and subvert economic recovery. Republicans have no one but themselves to blame for their unenviable position that forces them to resort to race-baiting as an election strategy, and the American people will not forget when November rolls around.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.