Voting For Whiteness
Brother Peacemaker wrote a blog post concerning Colin Powell’s announcement to support and endorse President Barack Obama’s re-election. Apparently, former New Hampshire Governor John Sununu weighed in on the news by criticizing the former Secretary of State by assuming that the only reason why that is so is because both men share the same color. He claimed that black people suffer from a condition that makes them support other black people in top positions no matter what. This is his assessment of a black man who served under three conservative white Presidents who is somehow now color aroused due to the inception of a Black President that his choice is apparently not based on facts but instead of color association.
I thought long and hard about this and other examples of this kind of color comradery. Undoubtedly, we live in a color-aroused society where color is associated based on historical and social myths and lies. It is so strong an entire group can be seen as a particular image depending on the actions commonly linked to that color. Of course, there were – and are – some blacks who have admitted openly to vote for Obama because he is black. No one’s denying that. In fact some have proudly said that. However, this color comradery is not limited to the black community, and it is by no means a product of Black American culture. In other words black people didn’t invent this shit. White people did. But let’s examine this a little bit, shall we.
Through the abrasive practices of white supremacy, white skin has been associated as a qualifier of power and leadership. Male superiority became its best friend as its proclamation surrounds that myth that a penis is a symbol of natural-born authority. So, the two spawned the white male supremacist fantasy that basically conveys the white man as a living god.
Now, let’s apply this myth to politics. The majority of people who vote Republican, who is almost entirely white, are overwhelmingly white while people of color (mostly black) vote Democrat, another mostly-white party. Black people have been voting blue in recent years due to the Left’s overall stance on having the government help the middle and lower class and making the poor give up their fair share of taxes. They believe, according to their speeches, in benefiting those outside what is now dubbed the 1%.
However, not all democrats agree with such a political ideal, and some of them believe in being “tough on crime” especially if it’s against minorities. Remember, under Clinton’s administration, more blacks were imprisoned due to the War on Drugs than during the Reagan and Bush years combined!
Since there is a sizable portion of black middle and lower class citizens, then it makes since that they would vote democrat. However, there are some who know that in the end, no matter which party representative is in 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. and what party is the majority in Congress, they know that those below the upper class will get screwed. The wealthy will still have their say, more of less, in government matters that affects them, their corporations and their eight-figured income. Still, those outside the overprivileged circle see the Democratic party as the lesser of two evils.
That is why there are blacks who are not color-aroused when they cast their vote for Obama then and now. They know he’s a Democrat, and they know that things would undoubtedly get horribly worse under four more years of Republican rule. It has nothing to do with the color of his skin. It has everything to do with the intentions and beliefs of the Left for which he represents. They wanted a change. Yet, as usual, very little was done on their behalf for the sake of the racist mainstream. Still, turning ‘blue’ is better than seeing ‘red’. Though, maybe it’s time we look for other parties or start one of our own that have our best interests at heart.
The Republican party, on the other hand, believes that the more money one has, the less pressure they should have to deal with such as taxes, environmental regulations, and anything else that could interfere with their increasing profits. (You know, the stuff the poorer folks have to live with seeing as how we somehow deserved it in their minds.) The Right firmly equates riches with morality and they see themselves as their best friends with the superrich who need all the support they can get.
The Right also believes that the poor (especially the black and brown poor) are generally lazy and criminal prone. They don’t think they are “trying hard enough” to obtain the American Dream or are simply too unlawfully dysfunctional to be integrated into mainstream society. So, they will demonize and criminalize anything and anyone that they think goes against their traditional values i.e. white men being in charge, women in the home cooking and people of color knowing their place. This is why their many political ads are filled with racism against poor blacks and Latinos. Remember the Willie Horton ad from the Bush (Sr.) campaign? Nuff said.
So, what does this all have to do with whiteness? It’s simple. White racism will cause people, mostly whites, to vote against their best interests. If most voters support the Republican party, the worst of the two evils, and some of them are poor or middle class whites, then there is a problem.
Mitt Romney, a Republican Presidential candidate and his running mate Paul Ryan has followed the Right’s doctrine of protecting the business man which is not too surprising considering that Romney is a big business man himself. However, that ideology only serves to help the hyper-privileged white males (and white females) whose only interests they are concerned with are their own. They could care less about the poor unless they can help them get richer.
But since white maleness is seen as a ultimate symbol of goodness and power and black maleness as the incarnation of evil, destruction and incompetence, many whites will see Romney and Ryan as their saviors. Like many Republicans, some Democrats (some of whom are white), most conservatives and all Tea Party disciples, they want the country back in the hands of the white man with whom they believe is the best kind of human being to run this country.
To add insult to injury, conservatives will use the old divide and conquer trick. As mentioned earlier most of the worst racist political ads have came from republican candidates. When poor white folks check out theses ads, they are affirmed that the greatest threat in America is not the avarice (most of the time) white male CEOs and company owners who could potentially ruin everything and anything just to get more money in his Swiss back accounts or the corrupt politicians who would bend over backwards (sometimes literally) to please their millionaire pals. Instead, the greatest threat to American society’s safety comes in the forms of Arabic Muslim extremists who “hate our freedom”. It comes from the Mexican border who’s coming in this country illegally to steal our jobs. It comes from the black hood wearing dreadlocks, hoodies, sagging pants, is armed and will rob us, beat us up for no reason and rape precious white women. All of those threats cover most or all people who fit those “races”, and many white people, as sad as it is, fall for it EVERY TIME.
Ironically, most Republicans believe in morals and ethics. If that were true, then many conservatives wouldn’t have been so hellbent in turning Obama into a lame duck politician or anxious to get his ass out of office for the simple underlying reason that he is a black man by using their racist mindset to convince people that he’s not unlike any other black man who’s out to get white people. Let’s not play games here. The instant he was elected, white people got scared. They feared losing their unearned privileges, and they are petrified over the ever-looming possibility of retribution for slavery (as if that’s the only crime they committed against black people in American history) that creeps up in their minds.
It didn’t matter if Obama was the better choice for President when the world needed to get the hell away from the Bush clan. If politics was all that mattered, according to some of these Right-wing representatives, then why the hell didn’t they rise up against Bush who’s administration plunged the United States and the world into an economic despair? The answer is plain, they (white people) simply could not stand having a person of color in the highest position in the land even if he or she was the logical choice over a white male who is less-than qualified and is a potential danger to the global society.
That is how white racism hurts everyone, including white people themselves. Common sense and shear logic are thrown out of reasoning when it comes who people should listen to and follow. This isn’t to say that people of color are always the best choice for leadership positions or making decisions that will affect the lives of others. But white men as the default selection for leadership makes no sense, especially when it comes down to skin color. Of course, most whites will deny that it’s all about color in this or any other election. They will not say that they plan on voting for Romney because he’s white. But if some like former governor Sununu believe that black people voted and will vote for Obama because he’s black, then isn’t that the same reason why they are NOT voting for him?