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African Americans Behaving Badly

November 6th, 2008

I have a great friend, one of my best, we’ll call him Bob and he had an interesting experience today. Now, I’m a black conservative and I certainly didn’t vote for Obama - but that doesn’t matter this is where we are now and hopefully he ends up being a wonderful president. Now, down to brass tacks. Black folks, you and I need to have a word. We need to sit down and talk about some truth. Black folks, you complain about stereotypes - you complain about the way people characterize you - and then I hear stories like the one I heard today and I weep for an entire race and culture. You’ve lost your way, you’ve forgotten what matters, and frankly great people (i.e. Martin Luther King Jr.) died in vain thanks to your behavior.

My friend Bob woke up this morning and read his bible, he is working on his Master’s of divinity to become a pastor, and decided to get a hair cut. My friend Bob is a hairy guy, not normal hairy but TEEN WOLF hairy. Being a graduate student working on a religion degree doesn’t afford him much of an income and he lives in a lower class area of Kansas City dominated by minorities. This isn’t a problem for him he loves people - He’s lived in Germany, spent a summer as a missionary in China, and loves everyone. As he waited in line at the bank, he was the only white person in the building, a few black guys behind him were having this conversation (note - this happened today after Obama had won):

“No f-ing Cracker would ever vote for a black man, f-ing racists”

“Yuh, hey cracker who did you vote for”

My friend confused and not at all happy about where this was going responded, “I don’t think that’s really any of your business”.

For his effort he received, “Yuh, you didn’t vote for Obama you racist f-ing cracker”.

Wow. He got his money and left. Now, it would be bad enough if this were the end of the story but, sadly, it’s not. He then traveled to the main thoroughfare to go to his regular barbershop. He was told they weren’t serving white people today. He went to the next barbershop and was told they were closed. The next barbershop informed him they would be charging him double the normal rate. Bob didn’t get a haircut today.

This is a fine example of a black community that has lost it’s way. Years of racism finally being overcome, the dream that so many people fought for is on the verge of becoming a reality, and black folks are behaving like this? Here’s some truth, my friend didn’t deserve this nor do most of the other non-minorities out taking care of their business today. There are plenty of reasons to not vote for someone besides their race. They aren’t responsible for slavery and most of them aren’t responsible for any acts of racism. Here we have a poor white kid trying to get a degree and a haircut. As long as black folks act this way, however, stereotypes will persist.

I guess I don’t understand why they think a historical day, the first black president knocking down the last wall, should be celebrated by hate and racism. Here we have Obama selecting a white running mate with a history of being accused a racist and this is the way they celebrate. I’m sure this isn’t what Obama had in mind. I’d bet my car (it’s not worth much just a ‘96 Maxima, but its all I have) that he wouldn’t approve of this kind of behavior. Not being an Obama supporter I still have a lot of hopes, expectations, and happiness’s regarding an Obama presidency.

I expect him to do as much as he can to unite the world - Though who knows what form that will take - and I think this is a good thing. I’m happy we have the first black president, a metric that can be used to show just how far we as a country have come. However, more than anything else, I hope that Obama’s presidency causes an enlightenment, a renaissance, amongst black communities, particularly among young black men. I hope they look to him as a role model, a beacon of light that lets them know there is a path that leads to success that isn’t out of their reach. I hope black men, young black men, use Obama as motivation for defying statistics - 32% of Black males born in 2001 are highly likely to spend time in prison, that’s double the percentage for Hispanics and six times the percentage for whites. In the inner city more than 50% of black men don’t finish high school, 60% of these dropouts have served time in prison and 72% of these dropouts can’t find jobs. I hope Obama can be a lighthouse for these men.

Mostly, I hope that I never hear another story like I did today. I hope rascism dies during these four years. I hope hate is put to pasture. I want hate out of harlem, I want hate out of Beverly Hills. Stories like these make me throw my hands up in frustration. My friend didn’t deserve that. I can’t do anything to help him, and I can’t educate the world. Or maybe I can, and maybe I have to. The more I look around the more I’m afraid no one else will.

  1. November 6th, 2008 at 00:39 | #1

    I think it is a great thing for our country that a black man is going to be president. I didn’t vote for him because of our differing views on just about everything, but I think it is great nonetheless.

    Before I heard this story, I thought Obama being elected was a sign that racism was dying in America. If anything, I hope that Obama is able to be a great role model for the entire black community. The statistics Thomas gave are scary and sad. I don’t believe in much of the “change” Obama campaigned on. However, I do think that he could have a profound change on an entire race. That would be a great thing and I would consider his presidency a resounding success given that accomplishment.

  2. Tanya
    November 6th, 2008 at 12:25 | #2

    Nice piece, TJ.

  3. Tanya
    November 6th, 2008 at 12:33 | #3

    “I hope Obama can be a lighthouse for these men.”

    That is also my hope — for men here in America and around the world.

    I’m a white woman, and I voted for Obama. I’m sorry about your friend’s experience. Sad indeed. And clearly ignorant.

  4. Tanya
    November 6th, 2008 at 19:51 | #4

    Ya know, I’ve been thinking about this all day. So many things have come to mind that I’m too tired to go into right now. But in the spirit of balance, allow me to share these:



  5. Mrmath130
    January 18th, 2012 at 20:51 | #5

    Isn’t it wonderful that while we attempt to appear clean and civilized, we are all just really “racist bleeps”? I mean, OBVIOUSLY every single white person who ever existed hates the idea of an African-American president, so OBVIOUSLY no white person worth their salt would vote for Obama, right? WRONG. Not everyone is a Nazi. I hope the world grows up in the next few years, even though we are almost 4 years into the first Obama term. It’s time to stop acting like children. As a centrist, I can make my point without Liberal or Conservative bias. If I didn’t do a good job of unbiased commenting, please tell me. Thanks!

  6. April 15th, 2013 at 03:23 | #6

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