Today, President Barack Obama will give a speech to the children in the nation’s schools telling them that the President of the United States expects great things of them. He wants to deliver a message telling them that they can have the best teachers in the best schools. But all of that can be for naught if the individual student fails to do their part and take advantage of their opportunities and fulfill their responsibility to their future and to their self.
But critics of the President have attacked the President’s message as political propaganda designed to further a socialist agenda. Many people are so outraged of what they haven’t even heard yet that they have decided to keep their children out of schools in an effort to minimize any potential for their children to hear anything dangerous and unpatriotic said. Some people have decided to tape the broadcast and if they approve of the message they will then allow their children to hear it. Others say no way José and won’t even bother to with suspicion because they are in full nothing good can come out of the President speaking to children mode.
Now for years, just about ever since the television became a tool of political theater, the President has used it to deliver messages to the American public. And never before has any of these messages been accused of anything diabolical. No matter which side of the political fence people may have been on, whether it was the same side of the President’s party or the opposite or the middle fence, nobody has ever charged the President with anything sinister. That is, at least not until now.
Now, Mr. Obama is too much in league with everything that America doesn’t stand for to be worth listening to. Suddenly, people so loyal to the country that they wear their patriotism on their red, white, and blue sleeves, who may have disagreed with their President before but always respected the institution, are thinking twice before allowing such pure unadulterated evil to speak to their children. It’s all some political plot by the President to reach out and influence our children’s thinking. The fear and derision is so thick people act like no President has ever done such a thing before.
Every modern President has spoken to the nation’s children. It has never been a big deal before. It shouldn’t be a big deal now. But somehow, it is different now that we have Mr. Obama giving the message. Now, we can see everything wrong with this tradition that before was a President’s right and responsibility. Now we know what is wrong with something we’ve taken for granted before.
If I didn’t know better, I would say that this is a typical response from the racially generic dominant community that is predominantly white. A behavior that has always been seen as benign before can become downright sinister when we see black people performing it. People gathering on a corner and hanging out is nothing to worry about. But when black people gather on a corner, there is a mob brewing and who knows what can trigger a riot. A person walking into a store is nothing unusual. But a black person walking into a store is a sure fire sign of inevitable shoplifter.
This racial disparity is so thick that we can look at a picture of white people wading through chest deep water in a city flooded after a hurricane and the caption will assume that they are trying to procure food, while the same photo with black people will have a caption accusing the people of thievery. Why would we think that a black President would be immune to such race based disparity?
A lot of people will say that race has nothing to do with it. This is just the nature of the political atmosphere we find ourselves these days. But that’s also more evidence of our racial disparity. We are quick to give people who hold black people under a microscope of suspicion the benefit of a doubt. And yet, we continue to foster an environment of such race based animosity that these people have a problem giving a black President the benefit of a doubt.
Maybe it is just a coincidence. Just because we suddenly look at the black President sideways and look for every reason in the world to disrespect him and his office for doing the same things a number of Presidents have done before him. But I really must say that I have to look with suspicions of racism at anyone who thinks that a President encouraging our children to stay in school is reason enough to pull children out of school. Encouraging children to do their in school and stay in school is a message that is worth being heard, even when it comes from a black President of the Untied States.