Saturday, October 25, 2008

10 days till history begins...

but will it be short lived|?

This historic election will draw to a close in 10 days and Barack Obama will be elected the first African-American President. He faces the most difficult challenge to any person entering the office of the Presidency,. His issues are doubled with the historical significance, and all eyes will be on him. Black eyes will be looking with pride and hope. Many will pray daily that he doesn't drop the ball or embarrass us. White eyes will look just as intently. They will be looking for favoritism, and some will be waiting impatiently for the 'see, I told you so' moment. His first four, heck his first year MUST produce noticeable change in the status of the country. This is close to an impossible feat by normal standards, but if he can do it, it will only serve to add to the legacy of the first African-American President.

Growing up (I'm 44), we were always taught from grade school age, that we could be anything we wanted to be. All we had to do was study hard, apply ourselves, and make good choices. In my naivite, I believed it all. It was not until the begining of the primaries that I realized that I had been fed a line my entire life. Institutionally, the words were true, but just wasn't ever going to happen. Fast forward to today and prayers, are being answered, history is being made, and we are all witnesses. It doesn't end the chapter of institutional discrimination, nor does it minimize the real pain of all who have been stung...It does however begin a new chapter....

In case you think our kids aren't paying attention...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Just when you thought this election cycle couldn't get any lower...

Let's see the score card to date; Obama has been accused of being racist, Islamist, socialist, communist, a terrorist, and a few other 'ists' I probably haven't heard about. The attempts to link him with these groups and ideals has surpassed all expectations and gone well beyond any code of decency that should be shared by sitting Senators. When did it become okay to spread lies about families and even repeat truths? Is this what we have become? You did it to me, now I have to get you back!. How does this tit for tat and smear of fear sit with the 'Christian' right? or even with the Christian (not so far right)? We are becoming the nation we have long claimed we had left behind. A place where fear rules, where lies are told, where upstanding citizens are treated with less regard than the family pet. Don't clap too hard Democrats, we are just as guilty. We may not be to the low point of the McCain/Palin team or the RNC, but we aren't wearing white to the election either. As predicted the situation continues to worsen. In Fayetteville, NC early Obama supporting voters are heckled as they cast their votes (most are African-American), voting machines are already kicking back the wrong votes as voters watch their vote evaporate. Supporters attending an Obama rally return to their vehicles to find them vandalized, including the police chief's wife. Grown men dressing stuffed monkeys with Obama stickers. A dead bear dumped in a small town intersection with Obama signs on it. A mailer with fried chicken and watermelon and Obama's face on a donkey, T-shirts with Curious George and Obama '08 printed on them. If you think the list is long, it is. Wake up people we ARE ALL Americans, it doesn't matter what you hyphenate before AMERICAN. When will we become the country we profess. A country built on the ideals of men who did whatever they had to do to escape religious persecution, a country with the rights of individuals to live their lives as they see fit, without trampling on others rights. voting is, in my opinion, a right as basic as breathing. To be intimidated or coerced in ANYWAY is unethical in the least and criminal at most. Yes we need change, and that change cannot be provided by either leader. The change must start and end with each of us. WE have to decide on change, not decide who will change things for us.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

General Colin Powell (R) (RET.) Endorses Barack Obama for president

Watch the moving endorsement of Barack Obama by former Secretary of State, General Colin Powell. Once considered a viable candidate for the presidency himself, a moderate republican, he has painfully given his support to Barack Obama. Weighing his personal values against the backdrop of his expectations for his party, he cites his reasoning.

Of course the blogosphere is already abuzz with words like traitor, disloyal, ungrateful, and the like. THEY say he did it just because he is African American...of course we know better.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Race and the Bradley Effect in the 2008 Election

To assume that race will not play a role in the upcoming election is naive, but it is not likely to be in a 'traditional ' sense. There will be Blacks that will vote for Obama just because he is black, there will be whites who will not vote for Obama just because he is black. Although both reflect racist attitudes, there is a different driver behind each. For the Black racist, the voter is (mis-)guided by a sense of pride. Certainly not the best reason to choose the leader of the free world. For the white racist, especially the white mainline democrat, that votes against their values based on skin color, their racism is based in hate. Racism on both sides-YES, the same or comparable? NO.

The Bradly effect IMO will not occur in this election, for a few reasons. First, there is still some discussion if there even exists a Bradly effect with respect to the California Governor's race. Second, in the information age, more people are making up their minds earlier in the season. Additionally, part of the issue of what determines the Bradley effect is that polls were taken in person. The difference with the presidential election is that it 'should' be easier for individuals who intend to vote for or against either candidate to be more candid with the pollster. The additional advancement of race relations to date are the final piece of this complex puzzle.