Who’s playing ‘The Race Card’ now?

Back in The Day, there was a heated argument over “reverse discrimination.” It started with a California student named Alan Bakke who sued the University of California because he was denied admission to a medical school. He said less-qualified Black students than he were admitted, and that that amounted to discrimination against him.
The Supreme Court agreed and Black enrollment in professional schools all over the country has been steadily declining for more than 30 years now.
Then, White folks started accusing–and some timid Blacks in public life began wilting beneath the charges–Black folks of practicing “racism.” A number of thoughtful Black folks reminded us that while Blacks might be “biased” against people who had oppressed and exploited them unjustly for more than 400 years, Blacks are incapable of being racists in this country because Blacks have no power to put any animus they held against their tormentors into any policies.
Now, in our “post-racial” world with a Black man as President in the land where Black people were held in bondage, sold like chattel, and forced into slavery for 310 years, now Black people are chastened whenever they point out these crimes against humanity and are accused of “playing the race card”–as if life was nothing more than a parlor game, and this “race card” was like some kind of Joker in the deck of life which trumps all other cards.
So Blacks, who are the victims of White racial discrimination in every aspect of life in this country were intimidated to not speak out about their suffering because doing so (playing the race card) made White people uncomfortable.
But our post-racial environment has not stopped the tsunami of ugly, hateful, racist jokes from cascading from every corner of our society against the Black President.
Now, we’ve always had silly little fraternity gags–especially at Halloween parties–where White people dress up in what they fantasize as being the stereotypical Black wardrobe. They cork their faces black, put on exaggerated Afro-style wigs, and wear the most garish costumes imaginable, trying to affect the look of “pimps and ‘ho’es.” But we really didn’t have a lot of high ranking politicians, or prominent newspapers making jokes about the President of the United States having apes and monkeys in his family, until we got a Black president.
But we have seen time and time again, White folks who should know better, saying just anything ugly that comes into their minds about this president. But let a Black person in any position working for Whites say or “Tweet” anything even mildly indelicate about Caucasians, and that person will be on his or her knees before the next morning, or will be unemployed by that next night.
A few months ago, a large-scale study showed that racial attitudes have already played a substantial role in the 2012 campaign during the Republican (read practically all-White) presidential primaries. The study, led by psychologists at the University of Washington, showed that between January and April 2012 eligible voters who favored Whites over blacks–either consciously or unconsciously–also favored Republican candidates relative to Barack Obama.
So, tell me, just who is it playing “the race card” in America? Why, it can’t be all the Republican candidates nationally who tailor their political messages to appeal to that prejudiced White mind, can it? White folks might say they don’t like President Obama because of the economy, or because of this, that, or the other, but the real deal is their conscious or unconscious racial attitudes influencing the way they’ll vote.
“In the study, a majority of White eligible voters showed a pattern labeled ‘automatic white preference’ on a widely used measure of unconscious race bias. Previous studies indicate that close to 75 percent of white Americans show this implicit bias,” Mahzarin Banaji, a psychology professor at Harvard University and one of the study’s collaborators wrote. The Race Card indeed!
So now, here comes Vice President Joseph Biden telling a largely Black group that Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney wants to take the government regulatory chains off the robber-barons on Wall Street, which would result in putting poor people “back in chains.” Biden is right. They’ve almost done it already with their payday loans and their automobile title loans with usurious interest rates.
But our poor, innocent Republicans and their Wall Street pals are whining and crying and wetting their beds demanding that the Veep step back from his comments. But he didn’t, and he shouldn’t, because what he said is true.
In a court of law, Truth is an ABSOLUTE defense against libel or slander charges. In this court of public opinion, the truth of Vice President Biden’s comments should carry the day against cheap charges of playing the race card.

One thought on “Who’s playing ‘The Race Card’ now?

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