Black Angst | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Black Angst

Every supporter of Barack Obama seems to be elbow-deep in anxiety over whether this election will be stolen. But for black Americans, it may be worse, writes Jonathan Capeheart in The Washington Post:

Yes, Obama went to the coveted school (Harvard). He got a plum job (U.S. senator). And he got the house in the choice neighborhood (Hyde Park, Chicago). All thanks to the sacrifices of heroes known and unknown who helped the nation stay true to its ideals. He has also run a nimble and near-flawless campaign. He's ahead in every national poll and statistically tied with or ahead of John McCain in states that President Bush carried in 2004. And he's raised more money than any presidential candidate ever, which has made it possible for him to be competitve in those red states. Yet I still can't allow myself to think for one minute that "they" (the infamous, faceless "they") will let Obama, Michelle and the girls move easily into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue come January.

Erana agreed with my explanation of black angst. But because she's in her 50's, her anxiety is rooted in something even more painful. "My hopes have always been dashed," she began. "That's why I'm afraid. That's why I have this angst."

"We lost a lot of people who represented equal opportunity and what this country stands for," she said, listing John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy. "Every time we have someone we believe in or who moves us forward something happens to them. All of these men touched blacks and whites. They all pushed us to look past our race. Every time we got close to living those aspirations they were taken away."

Powerful.

Previous Comments

ID
140149
Comment

I have been CAUTIOUSLY optimistic about Obama's chances. I have been careful not to predict the outcome so that I won't have to eat my words later. I just keep wondering in the back of my mind whether voter suppression or other dirty tricks could work, but at the same time, I have prayed that none of these tricks would stick. I am just going to shut up, vote, and hope for the best because I am tired.

Author
LatashaWillis
Date
2008-11-03T16:47:14-06:00
ID
140151
Comment

I've been talking rather optimistically today, but I worry too that too many whites just won't be able to vote for Obama because of the race tip. "If you let them ride, they'll want to drive, too, so says some." I certainly believe the undecideds are lying about being undecided and will vote for McCain. I also note the reluctance of late for many stations to count race as a major factor , and I wonder when did we finally get over, and I neither got over or heard about others getting over. However, I ain't scared of no ghost or afraid to dream. James Brown said what we need is soul power and I agree. Soul power is good power because Dr. King, Malcolm X, John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter, Roosevelt and Johnson had soul power.

Author
Walt
Date
2008-11-03T16:58:54-06:00
ID
140152
Comment

I just want the longest damn presidential election I've ever witnessed to be over.

Author
Jeff Lucas
Date
2008-11-03T17:00:36-06:00
ID
140153
Comment

John McCain said in an interview that voting won't be determined by race and further said that that better than 99% of people are beyond race. This is a total and absolute lie and we all know it is. I'm scared of anyone gullible enough to believe this! I'll put the mark of those infected by racism in some way that matters at around 50%. I know the south is different, but I simply don't encounter hardly any of those people McCain speaks of. People will lie about their reasons for voting for someone, and very few will admit they don't like blacks, but their party affiliations, voting deeds, living and working arrangements, education, socialization and honest conversations tell a different story altogether.

Author
Walt
Date
2008-11-03T17:20:12-06:00
ID
140154
Comment

Been trying to explain this to you from my angle of blackness for the longest Ladd. I guess I just didnt express well enough. Maybe you're trying too hard to explain something to me that I understand, Baquan, at least as well as I can as a white woman. I’ve been talking rather optimistically today, but I worry too that too many whites just won’t be able to vote for Obama because of the race tip. I know, I'm worried about the same thing, Walt. I'm also cautiously optimistic that this is the year that things change, at least for many white Americans. Did y'all see that Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania seemed to be hoping for the "Bradley Effect"? Yuck. Otherwise, I'm glad to see y'all jumped on this one. I had a feeling. You're welcome. ;-)

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2008-11-03T17:33:04-06:00
ID
140155
Comment

Oh, and if 99 percent of Americans were "beyond race," the Republican Party wouldn't be nearly all-white, and McCain-Palin rallies wouldn't be a sea of white people. The Republican Party has played the race card for years, and here is where it's gotten it. It's time for good Republicans to change that party for the better. Fine, be for small government and fiscal responsibility (unlike Bush et al), but don't try to do it on the backs of people of color.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2008-11-03T17:35:06-06:00
ID
140156
Comment

I didn't see Spector. I'm not surprised though! I know a few things about him.

Author
Walt
Date
2008-11-03T17:36:06-06:00
ID
140171
Comment

Did y’all see that Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania seemed to be hoping for the “Bradley Effect”? Yuck. Playing the race card, huh? I expect better from Specter. I respect him more than I do other Republicans, but if he's going to play that card, then hopefully the voters will remember that next time should he decide to run for re-election.

Author
golden eagle
Date
2008-11-04T09:23:14-06:00

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