Unfair Advantages By Tom Coburn
In response to a man who asked whether President Barack Obama wants to destroy America, Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn tried to defend his friend the President with one of the most insidious insults many people reserve for black people, describing Mr. Obama as an African-American male who received tremendous advantage from government programs. Mr. Coburn said that he didn’t believe Mr. Obama was trying to destroy America, but was trying to create a system of dependency because it worked so well for him.
Mr. Obama and Mr. Coburn claim to have a long, personal friendship that developed from their time in the Senate together. Mr. Coburn once claimed to have had a lot of admiration for Mr. Obama. While he admits that the two have exact opposite views on most policy issues, the two have managed to keep their friendship. But with friends like this who needs a tea party? Mr. Coburn happens to be one of those people who think that the only way a black person gets to become President is if they get the type of government assistance that gives black people an advantage over white people. The black man can never be the best person for the job or for an opportunity. Black men only get ahead because of programs like affirmative action. Black men have a dependency on being given the advantage which is why black people want to protect social programs that help ease some of the widespread disparity and lack of opportunity that has become part and parcel of the black community.
For the sake of argument let’s forget the fact that the major reason why the black community is in the position it is in, a position to sustain itself because of a near total lack of any considerable wealth combined with the overwhelming lack of compassion from the racially generic dominant community that is predominantly white, was because for generations our ancestors worked without compensation due to the fact that our government had policies and laws in place that were hostile to black community development that prevented black people from even being recognized as human. While white people were given land deals and took advantage of government programs that were handouts that gave white people every advantage, black people were left out. White people could apply for land grants. White soldiers could apply for loans and grants through G.I. bills that excluded black soldiers. And while white people were benefiting from all this dependency, black people were fighting for the basic civil rights to be treated fairly. With programs like these white people thrived and flourished while the black community wasted away strangled by an imposed retardation of wealth, education, infrastructure, and services.
And instead of taking real steps to correct the problems that were inflicted on the black community, the government makes tepid steps by allowing people in the black community to take advantages of programs that were initially designed to help the white community, like the welfare programs initiated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, a program initially developed to help down and out white people and exclude the down and out black people. For the sake of argument we will say that nothing was ever done by the United States to keep black people from succeeding and that black people were given every benefit that white people were ever given and all things were equal after America imposed slavery on black people, wrote into the United States Constitution that black people were only sixty percent human, America instituted a policy of segregation that forced black people to live with blatant racial disparity, numerous Jim Crow laws, and a whole host of other institutions of discrimination that were tolerated at the national level.
Mr. Obama took advantage of certain programs. Would it be fair to say that other Presidents took advantage of programs that helped them obtain their status? Would it be fair to say that President George Bush Jr. took advantage of having a father who was President once upon a time and managed to pull strings to make his mediocre son follow in his footsteps? Would it be fair to say that every President prior to Mr. Obama took advantage of their tradition of always being considered fully human without the history of having had to overcome some racial imposition of historic disadvantage? For the sake of argument, we’ll just overlook those advantages that were unfairly imposed on the black community.
Mr. Coburn looks at his good friend Barack Obama and sees a black man that could not possibly have gotten where he is based in any inherent ability, talent, intellect, hard work, or intelligence. He’s a black man after all. As far as Mr. Coburn and his kind are concerned, inferiority to white people is a given condition of being black. Black people are too dependent on the programs meant to help all people who find themselves down on their luck. Mr. Coburn looks at black men and sees dependency. His prejudice is so thick and strong that he couldn’t even put it aside to give his good friend the benefit of doubt for accomplishing something only a tiny fraction of people will ever dream of achieving. Mr. Coburn thinks that Mr. Obama is President because of some kind of affirmative action program.
It is because of people like this, people with an overwhelming prejudice against black people, that we need to keep a constant vigil against the racism that continues to flow through our social fabric. Mr. Coburn is the type of person that wouldn’t think twice of dismissing a black applicant for any opportunity he would have to give. A black person couldn’t possibly be the best candidate because the only reason a black person was able to obtain whatever ability they may have is because of some advantage that allowed them to avoid fair competition.
Never mind that white people have been given every advantage from the first day that a black person set a chain shackled foot on American soil to become some white person’s property. The black community deals with unemployment rates that are twice the white community’s. Black people suffer with higher rates of incarceration. As a whole, black people have only a tiny fraction of white people’s wealth. Black people have to deal with the prejudice of their good white friends like Mr. Coburn. By every social measure black people come up on the shitty end of the yardstick. But despite all those facts, people in the black community are supposed to have the advantage. Maybe white people like Mr. Coburn would like to go back a few hundred years and trade places.