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View Diary: Why the Right Continue to Live in Mortal Fear (191 comments)

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  •  A late comment on some of the later (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ahianne

    comments (in a hat tip to the folks who came later to this thread, which is MY usual practice):

    I am indeed appreciative of the attention and many thoughtful comments this diary has received, as well as its inclusion on the rec list, even at this late hour (must have been a slow news day!).  There have been many more people than I expected who have personally experienced their otherwise "normal" friends coming out of the woodwork as having long harbored deep-seated racist beliefs, kept quiet for a long time in a nod to political correctness, but not having given them up, as we're finding out.  Millions self-servingly call America a "great" country, ignoring the evidence that it is still heavily racist.  

    I'll never forget the comment I read right here during the 2008 election campaign, posted by an Obama canvasser somewhere in the midwest:  She and her partner approached a house in a middle-class neighborhood, rang the bell, and a woman answered.  The canvasser asked if they might inquire as to whom the occupants would be voting for.  The woman hesitated, then called over her shoulder, "Honey, who are we voting for?"  The response came in a normal, every day tone in a man's voice, unseen, further inside the house: "We're votin' for the ni**er."  

    To those who speak of the elderly moving to fear-based positions late in life, it is my experience that getting older often results in greater clinging to "things just the way they are right now, it's not perfect, but I can deal with it -- just don't CHANGE anything, I can't handle its getting any worse..."  So FoxNews becomes a friend and a shelter in the storm.

    To others, I remind them of Lt. Cable in "South Pacific," who sang "You've Got to Be Carefully Taught," lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, referring to the racism depicted in that universally loved musical, which enjoyed success throughout the 40s and 50s, when it became a movie.  Hammerstein was pressured to remove that song from the movie, thinking it would provoke too much of the audience.  He refused.  I don't remember hearing much about that song at that time, but I was quite young, so there may have been some back lash... but racism was accepted and largely ignored as "the way things are" through the 50s.  Most people did not even realize how strong the theme of racial segregation was in the story.

    Re: reparations.  Certainly no amount of reparations can remedy harm already done.  But, as the civil rights attorney in a "West Wing" episode told Josh Lyman discussing this problem, "We know you don't have $3.3 trillion [referring to the dollars in lost wages calculated by a fictitious analyst]...  We'll take it in scholarships, other kinds of benefits, etc."  The difficulty in making reparations at this late date SHOULD NOT de-rail discussions of them.  The longer this is put off, the more costly it will ultimately be, and the longer the resentment will fester, and the longer the period before healing can take place.  Obviously, it will be an enormous political football.  Well, maybe this will be the kick-off.  IT MUST HAPPEN, if America is ever to find the pathway back to its pursuit of a more perfect nation.

    And lastly, another paean to President Obama, who has remained largely above this particular fray... having experienced as well as observed racism all his life, I believe his performance in this area is precisely the correct balance between subtle but telling comments and letting things lie...  As he said early in his first term, "Michele and I thought long and hard" about the consequences he and his family would endure if he were elected.

    Americans who vote against their own interests are driven by "the human need to find a strand of significance that will hold everything together that isn't on TV..." (quote is from P. Roth in "Sabbath's Theater")

    by ceebee7 on Mon May 27, 2013 at 01:50:51 AM PDT

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