Friday, January 18, 2008

Putting the Black Man in his Place, or the False Victim of Hillary Clinton

Black Dreams, White Liberals - Charles Krauthammer @ Washington Post

I don't normally link to a Charles Krauthammer op-ed piece since most of the time the man is off his wheelchair. He does occasionally come up with a decent piece of writing though and his op-ed today on the Clinton-Obama race issue is a good bit of writing for him, particularly since he gets to slam liberals while appearing to support Sen. Obama. There really isn't anything substantially new to what Krauthammer writes but he does make a point that I hadn't fully considered yet: that the Clintons are treating Sen. Obama like some uppity nigger usurping a white woman's place. It plays to all the key points of the race card in the wrong way for the Clinton campaign to argue that Sen. Obama should wait his turn, especially since he's some ghetto-hood, drug-slinging darkie who only holds his place because the white liberals were nice and let him play with the big boys. Problem is, Sen. Obama is none of those things; he is not an 'uppity nigger' and he certainly was not some ghetto-hood as the Clinton campaign insinuates.
Sen. Obama should not have to wait his turn and, to be sure, Sen. Clinton should stop using this false victimhood by acting like a weak-willed woman who is being denied her due all because of some black man. I do not want the first woman president to win based on her playing the victim, particularly since the potentially first black president has not played such a role at any point. If Sen. Clinton wishes to garner the respect Sen. Obama has then she needs to rise above identity politics and play at the same level as Sen. Obama. And that right there is where I think the Obama campaign has a winning strategy. He isn't playing at the same level as the rest of the Democratic field. He's playing at a much higher level, something all the candidates, both Republican and Democrat, should aspire to.

Update: And it seems that I'm not the only one who thinks Sen. Obama is telling the rest of the field to catch up.

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