Race and voting: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s Dana D. Kelley doesn’t get it - Chapter 97

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I called my parents the other night, but I forgot about the time difference. They're still living in the fifties. - Strange de Jim

Oh, the election! As soon as the results were in, pundits all over America had to justify their paychecks by providing analysis of just why Barack Obama was able to win a second term.

Voting blocs, dredged up every five minutes on FOX, MSNBC and CNN, were dissected and scorn was heaped upon them, depending upon which side of the aisle you may be standing on.

“People voted for Obama because they want free stuff.”

This explanation is not only elegant in its simplicity, but it allows you to show off your own moral/intellectual superiority to everybody who didn’t vote as you did.

“Women want abortions” is the line I have read in way too many letters and Facebook posts, along with the "free stuff" canard.

Hispanics, well, they just want to continue their take-over of America,

But black people? Oh, black people, you’ve let us all down again!

Comrade Dana D. Kelley, the palest writer in Arkansas, wrote a piece for the Arkansas-Democrat-Gazette last week, with the title, “Which way forward?” We’ll just concern ourselves with the section, “Race relations,” which is always Kelley’s downfall when he writes.

Kelley wrote that:

“The fact that whites embraced diversity in their voting, and clearly subordinated Obama’s race to his political philosophy and campaign promises, is a major step forward. The next step would be for the black electorate to advance beyond voting almost purely along party lines . . . Otherwise, blacks risk being viewed not as families and citizens to be economically empowered, but as a voting bloc to be purchased.”


After his familiar refrain about “illegitimacy rates, high crime rates and low educational performance,” Kelley went on to write:

“Bona fide progress will arrive when black voters incorporate political diversity in their mindset and cast ballots on the basis of policies that challenge the unacceptable longstanding status quo.”

If only they'd learn to vote the way Dana D. Kelley thinks they should!

Just as so many white voters have, it seems, black folk should vote against their better judgement, and cast their ballot for the person who won’t stand up justice, for fair play, for civil rights, for sexual equality.

Kelley should have left this whole section out, perhaps, but give up a chance to talk about race, especially when he has pretty much laid low for a while?

Unlike Dana D. Kelley, I’m not privy to the mindset of millions of black Americans. I know that we have conservative black men and women not only in office but who also write about politics.

But the fact that the majority of individual black men and women may vote Democratic just sticks in the craw of folks like Kelley; he explains it away by suggesting, well, they might have voted for the guy who "purchased" their vote. Never is there the slightest suggestion that members of the “black electorate” actually took the think about the issues, debate the issues, and study up on them.

“Gee,” one might ask themselves after reading this column, “aren’t those white voters who have embraced diversity, just a little bit smarter than them black folk, who obviously have not fully embraced diversity yet?

Black Americans (so I have been assured) vote for white people, too. And have been for a long time now. Well, at least he didn’t talk about women and voting, though I suspect his reasoning may have gone along similar lines.

There has been a lot of criticism of Obama in (what? The “black community,” as media pundits like to call them? That sort of racism just puts them all in one big Easter basket as well) and there are many black writers that Comrade Kelley may try reading, before passing along more wisdom about how black people should vote.

******

Hope the North Carolina Tourism Board doesn’t get wind of this couple

After going to my doctor last week, not only did I have time to kill before the bus came, but I was starving to death. So I popped into a fast-food place and ordered coffee and a chicken sandwich.

I’m not gonna tell you which place it was, because this is just about people.

So I’m just sort of hanging out, bopping along to the voices in my head, waiting for my order, when an older couple came in. They had just returned from vacation in North Carolina, and she was there to pick up her check. They were just sort of nattering in the background, when she said, as if reassuringly, “Oh, no, there are whole housing developments where they only allow white people.”

My head didn’t whip around, but I slowly turned it and just looked at them. Her husband looked at me and said, hurriedly, “We have to get going now. We’ll see you later.”

Remember when we used to call ourselves the Athens of the Ozarks?

*****

Outrage! Outage, I say! You can never find too many silly reasons to feel outrage in 21st Century America

“We were outraged . . .” began the letter to the magazine from Bill and Pat Cleeland of Rockford, Illinois, taking part in the new national game of Outrage-at-the-drop-of-a-Hat.

The reason for their outrage?

TV Guide - the magazine which used to publish fairly literate pieces (they had Judith Crist and Cleveland Amory, for crying out loud) but now competes with People and US Weekly for intellectual irrelevance - devoted a page to President Barack Obama’s favorite TV shows.

Comrade Romney, who hadn’t submitted his list by the deadline, was printed in the issue following the election.

The Cleelands, who I am sure are probably very nice people and are kind to small animals to boot, saw the Obama TV page as “ . . . an obvious way to support him a few days before the election.”

Yeah.

That did it for me, all right- and probably for millions and millions of other Americans, as well.

Naturally, both candidates and their families are hip; they watch all the really cool shows. Nobody said, “Well, we’re halfway through The Six Million Dollar Man right now, and will probably buy Burke’s Law next.”

I'd have been happy if any of them liked Dexter.

“Outrage” over a page in TV Guide?

TV Guide?

****

Quote of the Day

One thought succeeds another; just as one is thought and I want to write it down, comes a new one - hold on, catch it - madness, insanity! - Søren Kierkegaard

rsdrake@cox.net

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