Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Race and Racism

During this Presidential race many Americans thought that we had put racism and sexism behind us. I don’t know about the sexism, but today it became apparent that the racism is still rampant.

This morning’s newspaper printed an article headlined “Supremacists spread anti-Obama fliers.” Apparently a white supremacist group headquartered in northwest New Jersey had dropped off fliers in driveways in Roxbury suggesting that voters should not elect Senator Obama because he is black.

This week a family member told me that an acquaintance of his was shocked that he might vote for a black man.

Now before any of us pat ourselves on the back, assuring ourselves that we are above all that, too cosmopolitan and diverse, take a look at the posts on a local Hillsborough forum. Look for the ones that refer to Senator Obama as “Hussein.” While that may in fact be the senator’s middle name, the posters do not use any other candidates’ middle names. Look for the ones that call him Barack bin Obama. Look for the ones that refer to the Muslim religion.

There are those who may argue that these aren’t racist comments, but in our hearts we all know better. Especially those making the comments.

"The parallel between antifeminism and race prejudice is striking. The same underlying motives appear to be at work, namely fear, jealousy, feelings of insecurity, fear of economic competition, guilt feelings, and the like." - Ashley Montagu (1905 - 1999), American anthropoligist, social biologist.

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