On August 28, 1963, hundreds of thousands of Americans poured into Washington, D.C. to demonstrate support for congressional action to ensure the civil rights of Black Americans. The March on Washington is most remembered for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s stirring and inspirational "I Have A Dream" speech. Among the visions expressed by Dr. King on that momentous day was this:
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
The United States of America is a very different country in 2009. Hardened racists no longer hold positions of power in government. They are a marginalized fringe that certainly still exist, but who occupy the outskirts of society.
White Americans who accepted the bigotry of the times and did nothing have evolved into a majority that has zero tolerance for such behavior and thoughts. Today, the term "racist" carries the strongest stigma of any label. In fact, I almost think most people would rather be accused of murder or rape than racism. The fear of the label leaves many paralyzed when it comes to criticizing a person of color, even when they deserve it.
Most Black Americans I have known hold no personal animus toward Whites in general. My experience with Blacks is no different than my experience with Whites. In day to day living, people are people and these things just do not matter.
However, there remains a serious problem with race in America. The source of that problem is a political, educational, and social elite whose rhetoric would have one believe that American in 2009 is no different than America in 1959. Political opportunists cry "racism" when their arguments have no power. Race hustlers make a living or build a power base by hyping phony charges of racism to alarm and anger folks into a group think mentality. These groups are generally sympathetic to the Liberal-Leftist-Progressive-Socialist Democrats and use variations of the race card to advance their causes.
We have seen an incredible up-tick in this behavior in recent years. In fact, the more Americans reject notions of inherent racial differences, the more race hucksters try to paint every disagreement as a sign that American is a fundamentally racist country. Ironically, the only reason this has an effect is that America is NOT a racist wasteland and people have a tendency to accept the accusations as truth and ask questions later (i.e., the Duke lacrosse fiasco).
President Barack Obama has played a role in this increase in playing of the race card. For all the talk of him being a "post-racial" figure, he has never hesitated to exploit America's sensitivity to bigotry. During the 2008 campaign, again and again, Big Media and Leftist pundits accused those who did not support Obama of being racist. His policies, his background, his associations, and his radical ideology were not sufficient reasons.
Now, any opposition to Obama's policy goals are stamped "racist." This has been especially evident as Real Americans (of all races, by the way) have stood up and challenged President Obama and congressional Democrats in their rush to place all Americans under a program of nationalized health care. The more Real America protests, the more they are attacked as a group of closet Klansmen. Do these cynical cretins really believe that Americans would embrace socialized medicine if John Edwards were President? No one is whiter than John Edwards, but I can guarantee you that the reaction to this descent into fascism would have been just as strong, if not stronger. In reality, some Conservatives are more restrained in their criticism of President Obama because they fear being labeled.
I'm ready for the post-racial world we were promised would come with an Obama victory. However, for that to happen American Leftists have to begin fighting political battles on merit without the cowardly attacks on the motives and humanity of Conservatives. If President Obama is truly above this behavior, he should disavow those who play the race card. His vitriolic slam in the wake of the Henry Gates debacle tells where his heart is on this issue.