HILLARY CLINTON plays a dangerous game. She uses her supporters—who believe in her so much that they refuse to see she is a calculating politician—to cover her crooked technique. Don’t get me wrong, of course Obama is a calculating politician too. I don’t think he is some beautiful pure child unstained by power plays or agenda or strategy. He uses different moves, but he sure ain’t throwin’ elbows like Hillary.
Hillary Clinton is banking all these sly shots in a zone where denial steps aside and leaves the net wide open. She uses the power of the listener’s own mind to hide her intention. She enlists the denial that Good People Employ so that they don’t have to admit the hard realities of racism. She encourages blindness. She urges you to go along with this voice of denial while she moves this string just so, and this wedge just so. Always remaining hidden to the mind that already doesn’t want to see certain things. As long as you refuse to buy into the idea that what the “AAs” (this is what some sites now reduce blacks to??) have to say on these things might matter, she wins each and every encounter. She is clearly a master of her game. And she plays you. Because that is a long-running tendency in our nation. Those are the voices we are very used to discounting, hey? But she doesn’t know anything about that.
This is not the rambling of some Obama fan that has drunk the Kool-aid. The reaction of the Obama campaign is almost as foul that as the comment itself. “Senator Clinton’s statement before the Argus Leader editorial board was unfortunate and has no place in this campaign.” This whatever-you-do-don’t-say-it’s-race strategy is just plain stupid. We saw it in action last week when the Washington Post published an article about the racism that Obama campaign volunteer face daily. Not only do you ignore the elephant in the room, you barely raise a brow when it dumps on your shoulder. How undignified is that?
How can you solve a problem that you never acknowledge? How can you claim to have a plan that attacks racial inequities in health, education and other issues if you are too busy using racism to promote your own cause or ducking it altogether? How curious.
Throughout my youth, I had been a creative, aggressive chess player. I loved the battle, and wild, dynamic chess felt like an extension of my being. Then, in my late teens a coach urged me to play in the opposite style, his style of quiet, positional, cold-blooded prophylaxis. Instead of cultivating my natural strengths, he boxed me into the cookie cutter mold he knew. In time, I lost touch with my intuitive feeling for chess, and without an internal compass I foundered in the swells of fame and high-pressure competition.
I see myself in the eyes of so many kids today. Too many primary, elementary, and high schoolers are being boxed into the mold of conformity required by big classes, competition for grades, tests with multiple-choice questions.
The first grader who leaps to his feet when he figures out the math problem is diagnosed as ADHD and medicated to sit quietly with the class. Young learners have immense pressure to perform, to get good grades, but no one is listening to the nuance of their minds. They feel suppressed, they are suppressed, and by the time students get to college, they have become disconnected from the love of learning.
When the issue of not enough bloggers of color being invited to blog at the DNC Convention in Denver, I saw a blog post over at Daily Kos and decided to put in my two cents in asking about that.
Once I got past flaming (because whenever you bring up a subject relating to race or ethnicity and even begin to suggest there may be an element of racism, you get flamed),one of the responses suggested that if bloggers of color aren’t credentialed at the state level, you don’t get an invite to the dance on the National level. MissLaura seemed to take issue with me for even asking the question and suggesting that we bloggers of color are overreacting because not all of the credentials have been announced yet.
Call me paranoid, but once again, I’m sensing the raising of the bar for us, just like it was done for voting rights. Why is it that you want to invite people of color or ethnicity to the dance for your issues, but we’re not allowed to discuss our issues? Why is it, that when we accomplish one hurdle, two more are put up? Has anyone bothered to explain to bloggers of ethnicity or color, how do you get a state blogging credential?
About This BlogRacialicious is a blog about the intersection of race and pop culture. Check out our daily updates on the latest celebrity gaffes, our no-holds-barred critique of questionable media representations, and of course, the inevitable
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Latoya Peterson (DC) is the Owner and Editor (not the Founder!) of Racialicious, Arturo García (San Diego) is the Managing Editor, Andrea Plaid (NYC) is the Associate Editor. You can email us at email@example.com.
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