Tuesday, July 1, 2008

It's about time this defense was published

How many months was it when Michelle Obama got raked over the coals for daring to say that for the first time in her life she could truly be proud of this nation? The reasons should have been obvious then; her husband, Senator Barack H. Obama was running as a presidential candidate among a fairly crowded field of Dem candidates, and he was actually drawing huge crowds of people prepared to vote for him. It was at that time that this was seen as some terrible gaff that could only hurt candidate Obama. It was also at this time that Ms. Obama got attacked by people who felt "flushed with patriotism" in their rush to judgment over a candidate's spouse poor choice of words. How many months before the Spokesman-Review finally publishes:

For black Americans, national pride overcomes obstacles

Frank Harris takes note of Michelle Obama's comments and has a different reaction to them than the White America of the news media, the white America among the bloggers and letter writers. Their presumption was that only because Ms. Obama must truly "hate America" and has demonstrated a "lack of patriotism" could she speak as she did at the time. Mr. Harris has quite a different and welcome take on the matter. For example:
On the Fourth of July, we as Americans will celebrate the 232nd anniversary of our country's independence. On the fourth of November, we will elect our 44th president. I said we: This is our country. This is my country. I am an American: I did not say black American. I did not say African American. I said American.

How about that. You get the impression, throughout all of Mr. Harris' editorial that there is a lingering bigotry. That those who rushed to judge Michelle Obama finally proud to be American speech could do so, not so much because of her politics, her husband's party, but also because of the color of her skin! There is in fact a lingering bigotry in this nation. That if you are the wrong color, you can't possibly be "as American" as the "white majority." While Mr. Harris could rightfully discuss this from the perspective of race, I can expand on this by considerable.

Pat Robertson only held the opinion that Christians were the only people who could truly be patriotic. In a nation, incidentally, where Christians may make up a "majority" of people, but Christians are in fact made up of many sects. Which "Christian" would Robertson, a protestant, have argued was "patriotic?" At the same time, how about all those non Christians who served this nation honorably in a time of war and peace? Basically, Robertson held to a not so moral version of "Christianity" that he doesn't have to love his brother or his neighbor as himself. This Druid, after all bore arms on his behalf during my time in the U.S. Army during the final years of the Cold War. Just so that he could say, that as long as I wasn't "Christian" I couldn't be patriotic. So why would I be surprised by the willingness of news media types, political cartoonists, bloggers and letter writers to flay Michelle Obama for truer words never spoken? If you aren't one of us—religion, race, geographical origin, etc.—you aren't one of us!

The only thing I find distressing was that it took so long for Harris' editorial to make republication. Why should it have taken so long?

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