Barack Obama v. the White Male Supremacy Paradigm
Cross-posted at MyDD, after which I may well be banned there (again) for posting such a thing.
This is what I said at DailyKos, just before I was banned there:
I define “white male supremacy”: as “the belief that white males, no matter how much and how often they fail, are still, by virtue of their male gender and white skin, inherently more qualified than blacks and women who succeed.” — Francis L. Holland, December 13, 2006 at DailyKos.
And everything about this election in 2008, shows that I was correct: Barack Obama runs not just against a man, John McCain, but also and much more importantly, against the white male supremacy paradigm. Barack Obama has to show NOT ONLY that he will be a better president than John McCain, but also and more importantly, that John McCain is not inherently superior to Obama by virtue of John McCain’s white skin.
It ought not be hard to demonstrate that the Party that prefers to end an expensive and futile was that is wildly unpopular is preferable to the party that proposes to continue that war indefinitely. It ought not be hard to convince the public that the party whose current president has a 29% approval rating ought not be selected to perpetuate the policies of that same lousy-ass president.
And polls show that when adding undecided voters to the McCain column, (as might arguably happen in November) the race is actually a dead heat.
Why? Because in addition to having a Black candidate at the helm, the Democratic Party has become known to Americans as the party of Black people, simply because 90% of Blacks vote in November for Democrats, while only 10% of Black vote for Republicans, and Democrats necessarily have to be more responsive to Blacks than Republicans are. There is nothing that the Democrats can do about this in the short term, since without Black voters the Democrats would be an electoral nullity.
On the other hand 50% – 60% of whites vote for Republicans, based as much on the color of the party – all-white – as based on the politics of the party. This explains why, even as the Republicans tank in virtually every meaningful respect, Barack Obama still requires a campaign strategy at all.
Certainly, the Republicans promise different economic strategies from the Democrats – strategies which benefit one percent of the populous at the expense of everyone else. But the important part of Republicans’ promises is that they promise to do nothing at all for Black people, which is what many white people are fixated upon, above all else. They vote for Republicans because they want to vote against Black people.
National health care would help all Americans, but it would help Black people more, because our health is worse and our present access to health care is worse. For many white people, denying Black people health care alone is a sufficient reason to oppose national health care.
Additional funding for school lunches, daycare and college tuition would help all Americans, but they would help Blacks more, because Blacks are economically more stressed and relatively more desperate for these kinds of middle-class supportts. For many whites, that alone is sufficient reason to oppose these programs.Getting back to the question of who should be president in 2008, we find ourselves choosing between two alternatives:
1). A man who graduated in the lower 5% of his Navy Academy class; whose furious and sometimes violent outbursts at Senate colleagues and others may be symptomatic of untreated Vietman Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome; who called his wife a “cunt” in front of reporters, whcih further indicates an inability to control his temper under stress; who doesn’t know Shiites from Sunnis from Iranians; who says 100 years more of war in Iraq is “alright with me”; and who would be the oldest president in American history at a time when the greatest challenges we face are the newest ones.
2). On the other hand, we have a candidate who has an excellent academic pedigree, having been editor of the law review at Harvard University; who is obviously of a genius quality intellect, who is an excellent public communicator, because he perceives the concerns of others – even those with whom he strongly disagrees – and addresses them to the extent possible; who demonstrates the ability to rouse parts of the public who have heretofore ignored and been ignored by the democratic process; who shows an ability to relate with people gracefully, regardless of who they are; who has achieved the distinction of becoming the only US Senator of his color in America, despite the national odds against doing so; who promises national health care; increased student financial assistance; better relations with other countries and resort to war only as a last resort; and an immediate withdrawl from a war that has become wildly unpopular.
The choice would be a no-brainer except for one thing: The “white male supremacy” syndrome: Once again,
I define the “white male supremacy syndrome” as: “the belief that white males, no matter how much and how often they fail, are still, by virtue of their male gender and white skin, inherently more qualified than blacks and women who succeed.” — Francis L. Holland, December 13, 2006 at DailyKos.
Will it be possible for white American voters to perceive Barack Obama as the superior candidate for the presidency, even though they have always believed that white people are inherently more qualified than Black people, and even though 50-60% of them have reflexively vote against the party that has more Black people in it?
Democrats who want to win the presidency for the Democratic Party in 2008 will have to acknowledge who their real opponent is: Not John McCain the politician, but John McCain the hapless but nonethless potent representative of the 43-term white male monopoly of the presidency, which is but one manifestation of America’s white male supremacy paradigm.