added 9/24/08: I just realized it is doubly shameful for McBush to pick Palin with this degree of racism up front...I was speaking with my Racist fil but got thru when I said "If Obama were your white son, graduating at the top of his class, law review, teach law school run for state legislature and win, US Senator, running for prez, you would be SOOOOO proud of him!!!!"
No one has really been talking about racism in Alaska, because we know so little about it. Here is a blog by Anchorage native African American writer who has some serious questions about why Sarah Palin as governor ignored the requests of African American pastors to meet with her.
A recent meeting with the Rev. Alonzo B. Patterson of the Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Anchorage confirmed his part of the story. He stated that he had requested a meeting between the governor and members of the African-American community as soon as she took office. According to Patterson, Governor Palin said she would 'consider' the request. But after months of waiting and several follow-up letters repeating the invitation; four from Pastor Patterson and at least one from the Rev. Dr. William Greene, an officer of the local NAACP, the community heard nothing in response.
The writer goes on to say:
"At this point readers to the south of Alaska may need some background. When traveling in the 'lower 48', friends and acquaintances seem puzzled when I mention the African-American community in Alaska. Most of them are surprised that not only is there a significant African-American community, but there are also Samoan, Hawaiian, Korean, Hmong, Thai, and Hispanic communities to name a few. That is of course, in addition to our Alaska Native and Native American populations. The Anchorage School District reports that over 90 languages are spoken in our student's homes and though there are still more white students than any other single group, students of other racial groups make up over 50% of the school district's student population. This is the world we live in, at least some of us, here in Anchorage, where half of the population of the state of Alaska resides. It is in this context that invitations for dialogue with the African-American community have been ignored."
Palin according to these folks, who have lots to lose by speaking out, has apparently appointed very few if any African-Americans to posts in her administration.
Also, she has not rushed to give them access to public records to verify the actual number of state employees of various ethnic groups.
And, the Rev. Dr. Alonzo B. Patterson is a person that a governor in Alaska would be expected to take seriously. Pastor Patterson has resided in Alaska for 45 years. He is a veteran. He has held numerous offices in local, state and national church organizations and is the current coordinating director of the American Baptist Churches of Alaska, and president of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Foundation of Alaska. He has served at his current church for 38 years. He also served as chair of the Alaska Board of Paroles for 13 years and has enjoyed a communicative and constructive working relationship with mayors, governors and other elected officials in the past...So we have two examples of Palin ignoring concerns expressed by groups who were advocating for minority representation in her choices of appointees"
No one has actually gotten her to talk about anything important yet, so I wonder if she has any reason for the foot-dragging, without the curtesy of an official refusal to these Pastors and community members who happen to be minority.
Some of the reporters who are trying to find out who she is, especially in Alaska, could be asking questions in the ethnic communities and also in the sportsman's community.