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One less lecture from "the world" to endure
Posted by: McQ on Friday, November 14, 2008

The next time "the world" calls the US a "racist country" or tries to lecture us about how far we are behind the rest of them (mostly Europe) in racial tolerance and race relations, remind them of what Chanda Chisala so eloquently points out below:
There was a lot of euphoria and celebration all across Africa when Barack Obama won the American presidency, becoming the first black man to hold the most powerful seat in the world. Kenya even made a national holiday to allow its people to fully soak in the moment. Everywhere on the continent there were Obama parties and cars hooting endlessly as the election results were announced.

Many people said it gave them hope. An email from a colleague in Africa said, “it shows that even black people can achieve whatever they want in this world.”

I wouldn't like to be the one to put a pin in this balloon, but the victory of Obama does not say anything about black people. It says something about the United States of America. If it does give hope to “blacks,” it is only to those who are fortunate enough to be citizens of this great nation.

If anything, Obama’s victory exposes just how far behind the rest of the world is to the United States of America and, instead of being a cause of celebration for Africans, this should be a moment for some very serious self-criticism.
Yup, next time one of your foreign - *cough* European *cough* - friends starts that lecture, ask them, other than countries in Africa, what country in the rest of the world has an opportunity for a black man to be its leader, much less a real chance?

Prepare for dead silence.

End of lecture.
 
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
"... other than Africa, what country in the world ..."

First Sarah Palin and now you, McQ! ;-)
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
Never underestimate the ability of race hucksters to whine and bellyache and cry "racist" at any opportunity. Who are the race hucksters? Some of them are very close to the president-elect indeed. Even while he sleeps.

Ever since the emancipation proclamation, the US has been the best place for blacks to live. Not necessarily Mississippi, Alabama, or Arkansas, but most of the country.
 
Written By: Bloviating Bill
URL: http://
First Sarah Palin and now you, McQ! ;-)
Ack - that’s not very well worded is it? Time to edit.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
You forget, Obama is half white which, when you include all those that voted for the whole white man, means that approximately 75% of the voters voted for a white man. Thus, we are still racist.

QED.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Uh, when has "the world" lectured America about being a "racist country?"

Africans probably can still point to a colonial mentality in the West whereby Africa’s plight is ignored — we can spend billions on an unnecessary war, but not help people really in need. But that’s Europe and American, that’s a kind of racism shared by liberals and conservatives a like. People still see Africans as primitive and thus their suffering is somehow unimportant.
http://scotterb.wordpress.com
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Scott, you must not travel very much or meet many foreigners. :) I’ve often been asked about the situation of blacks in the USA. Some were very good questions, like why were there no black exchange students among us studying in Indonesia. Others think its still slavery or segregated in the USA.

The one instance that really took the cake was when I was chatting on-line with a French guy who was telling me that in America blacks could only get jobs at McDonalds.

So, on a trip to Paris, I took some time to visit the McDonalds on the Champs Elysees. Completely packed with mostly white Frenchies eating their McDo. The staff was all black African or Arab.






 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Correction: "slavery or segregation" is an exaggeration. What I meant is that they think its a completely horrible situation where no blacks every get to advance, etc.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Uh, when has "the world" lectured America about being a "racist country?"
God, Scott, I guess you never travel to Europe. I hear it all the time. I mean every chance they get.
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
It’s official. We now have moved from Bush bashing to Bush ignoring.
 
Written By: Adriane
URL: http://
... we can spend billions on an unnecessary war, but not help people really in need.
So Bush putting more towards AIDS relief in Africa than all presidents before him COMBINED is chopped liver?

And sending resources — needed in that "unnecessary war" — off the coast of Liberia was likewise insignificant?

Oh yeah. We’ve done NOTHING for Africa.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://socalconservative.blogspot.com
I had a Euro on IRC actually ’pat us on the head’ and say ’good Americans’ for electing Obama. I asked her to let me know when her country elected a colored head of state so I could send her a scooby snack. (It was the ’It seems once again, America leads the way,’ that drove a stake through the conversation’s heart, though.)
 
Written By: Achillea
URL: http://
xUeAAn wrgnccobmbiy, [url=http://cwizasnyhtkk.com/]cwizasnyhtkk[/url], [link=http://nnwtwdwcvccz.com/]nnwtwdwcvccz[/link], http://comrdticxmay.com/
 
Written By: kfnmyc
URL: http://fneaqdzukegt.com/
Here’s a clue, Erb - solving Africa’s problems - or anyone else’s problems - is not our job; and it’s not our job because there is only one thing that can win a people their freedom and prosperity, and for them to keep it. It can be provided by nobody else, and it is composed of the following: Lives, fortunes, and Sacred Honor.

Some assembly my be required.
 
Written By: The Gonzman
URL: htt
Prepare for dead silence.
You wish. It takes more than that to shut an European worth his salt up. My gums will still be flapping thirty minutes after my heart hast stopped beating. At the very least.

Anyhow, Europeans are, on average, indeed more racist than white Americans. We have checked ourselves into the Betty Ford Center for recovering colonial exploiters, but the healing is a slow process. And man, you wouldn’t believe the flashbacks.

On a more serious note, we don’t have that many black citizens as the US as a fraction of the general population. With a smaller pool of potential candidates, it is less likely for one of them to rise to the top. Besides, most immigrants arrived pretty recently, two generations at most. At this stage, immigrants and their descendants are still founding businesses, or working in the family business. Politics, except on the local level, is not where they commonly try to succeed. It will take some more decades for immigrants, black or otherwise, to become interested in a career in politics on the federal level in any numbers.

 
Written By: Ralf Goergens
URL: www.chicagoboyz.net
On a more serious note, we don’t have that many black citizens as the US as a fraction of the general population. With a smaller pool of potential candidates, it is less likely for one of them to rise to the top. Besides, most immigrants arrived pretty recently, two generations at most.
Blacks make up 14% of the population and Barack Obama is a second generation American (his father being from Kenya).
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
Africans probably can still point to a colonial mentality in the West whereby Africa’s plight is ignored — we can spend billions on an unnecessary war, but not help people really in need. But that’s Europe and American, that’s a kind of racism shared by liberals and conservatives a like. People still see Africans as primitive and thus their suffering is somehow unimportant.
Uh, Scott, the war was about helping people. It was about helping people get out of Saddam’s dictatorship.

The problem in Africa is African culture. There really isn’t much we can do about that, giving them money doesn’t help. I suppose we could go back and colonize Africa, with the intent of converting them to Western culture.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
...Barack Obama is a second generation American (his father being from Kenya).
Since he was actually raised by his mother’s family, this is a bit of a stretch. How many generations of his mother’s family have been American?
 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
Blacks make up 14% of the population and Barack Obama is a second generation American (his father being from Kenya).
I know, but we have much less than 14%. And Obama’s second generation status isn’t that much of a factor,considering that African-Americans in general have been in the US for much longer than our immigrants have been here. They also have been politically active for a pretty long time, so there was a sizable (racial) base of support for him. A black person in Europe wouldn’t have that.
 
Written By: Ralf Goergens
URL: www.chicagoboyz.net
And Obama’s second generation status isn’t that much of a factor,considering that African-Americans in general have been in the US for much longer than our immigrants have been here.
But previously in a completely different status (where length of time in the US is mostly irrelevant), and, it hasn’t been but until the last 40+ years they’ve been really active in politics (mostly since the early ’60s). Their progress has mostly been a result of a sea-change in the attitude of the white majority (I’m not suggesting their cause and persistence in pursuing their cause wasn’t righteous, I’m simply pointing out the obvious).

Seriously - where in Europe does a person of color have any real shot at the top spots? Frankly, claiming small % and 2nd gen status sounds like an excuse to me.

Aren’t you really arguing that Europeans, to this point, simply haven’t considered such a thing as desirable, feasible or acceptable?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
"Seriously - where in Europe does a person of color have any real shot at the top spots? Frankly, claiming small % and 2nd gen status sounds like an excuse to me."

Provable...show 1st or 2nd generation Italians or Irish who rose to the national stage in the USA, i.e. not in enclaves.

Also, tongue in cheek here, Obama is a very special case if you ask me. Speaks with a very white bread accent. Eats Arugula. Is a dork. (rides bike with shirt tucked in.) I wonder what kind of car he drives? I’d guess Volvo. (Let me remove my tongue from my cheek: this stuff is normal for a mixed background individual in modern times, but it re-assures some people.)

I think Britain might be the next potential place where a non-white who seems pretty damn "white" would be able to win. I am also reminded of Mandela’s much admired use of Rugby. Seriously, if you in any way wanted to defuse your "blackness", wouldn’t complaining about the price of arugula be an excellent way to do so?








 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Also, Obama has been portrayed as an elitist.

I’ve heard a lot of Dems, and not without some rationale, say "how can a black man in the US be considered elitist?"

While that gets a chuckle from me at first, later on I think...

Hmmm, interesting that the GOP is willing to consider that a man’s education, actions, and habits could be considered elitist despite his skin color.

While the Democrats are arguing that no matter how rich, educated, or urbane a person is in reality, the skin color trumps.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
"Politics, except on the local level, is not where they commonly try to succeed."

That is hardly surprising considering the difficulties of obtaining German citizenship other than being born to German citizens. Sort of like why Jews went into banking, etc., instead of fields they were barred from.


"They also have been politically active for a pretty long time, so there was a sizable (racial) base of support for him. A black person in Europe wouldn’t have that"

I believe the point of the discussion is the attitude of whites towards minorities, not demographics. It seems to me the implication here is that Europeans are indeed racist, else why would it be necessary for a racial base?

I doubt that there is any European country that has close to the percentage of minorities in Congress, senior governmental positions, etc. that the US does.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"Is a dork. (rides bike with shirt tucked in.)"

Hey! I take exception to that characterization!

"I’d guess Volvo."

Hey! Hey!
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"I think Britain might be the next potential place where a non-white who seems pretty damn "white" would be able to win."

I agree. Salman Rushdie was knighted, as was a member of an even smaller ethnic group, Nils Olav.

"Penguin receives knighthood at Edinburgh zoo"
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2008/aug/15/norway?gusrc=rss&feed=networkfront
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"People still see Africans as primitive and thus their suffering is somehow unimportant."
In one breath you question McQ’s "the world" assertion and then you turn right around and claim "people still see..." Who, then, are these people? Get off your horse.

 
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
How quick we forget our political heritage.

Does William Tweed count, or is New York to much an enclave?

Immigrants made this country, culturally, economically, and politically.

The problem with much of Africa is that their governments and strongmen get in the way of real progress. And we can’t just get rid of them, that would be so passe, eh.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
But previously in a completely different status (where length of time in the US is mostly irrelevant), and, it hasn’t been but until the last 40+ years they’ve been really active in politics (mostly since the early ’60s). Their progress has mostly been a result of a sea-change in the attitude of the white majority (I’m not suggesting their cause and persistence in pursuing their cause wasn’t righteous, I’m simply pointing out the obvious).

Seriously - where in Europe does a person of color have any real shot at the top spots? Frankly, claiming small % and 2nd gen status sounds like an excuse to me.
Well, I did say in my first commebnt that racism is a bigger problem over here.

Even so, the 60’s is when most immmigrants started to arrive over here. The duration of time is relevant for it means leass time to build up political support.

It also very much depends on the person in question. The reason Obama got a shot at the presidency in the first place is because his supporters projected a lot. They saw qualities in him that he can’t possibly have. Or at least not al of them and ceratinly not to that extent. Without that charisma, Obama would never have been even nominated.

We also have different polical culture: To get anywhere as a politician, you have to work your way up in a political party, working for the party for decades. You have to work the base, build networks with all kind of people inside and outside the party, ’pay your dues’, etc, etc. In that regard, Obama indeed wouldn’t have had a chance over here.

On the other hand, an immigrant could have a shot at the chancellory, provided he displays a certain charisma and is willing to keep in close personal contact with the party base and has the stamina to work at it for decades. If he is convincing, he could neutralize racist resentments and so on. On the other hand he would have to do without the benefit of projection by devoted fans, for the base would know him for what he is from first-hand experience. ’Hope and change’ won’t cut it, at least not without concrete details about what exactly he is hoping for and what kind of change he is talking about.
 
Written By: Ralf Goergens
URL: www.Chicagoboyz.net
Keith, yes, NYC is too much an enclave.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/11/16/europe/germany.php

German Party has leader who is son of immigrants...whoot!

Yes, we can!
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
As a New Zealander, I will pick New Zealand as the next Western country to choose a non-white leader.
We already have Maori slightly over-represented in our parliament, and our newly elected centre-right government has more Maori and other minority (Pacific Islander/Asian/Indian) MPs than the opposition.
 
Written By: Emmess
URL: http://

 
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