Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The obvious racial problems still occurring in this nation

We live in a society where aversive bias still lives and thrives.  It was clear with the way some political pundits this evening wanted to declare that the "sweeping" losses for some Democratic politicos was the result of poor leadership from the President [Obama].  However, it is far from the contrary.  We still live in a society where many white Americans have yet to gotten over their issues of race at all and where there are forces at work that are destroying any chance of economic recovery.  Economics doesn't tell the full story behind what is really going on.  I'll mostly focus on the South since I know this region all too well.

In the South, a region that by default been one where there are clearly 2 categories of citizenry, poor and wealthy.  The middle class didn't exist in the South until the mid-20th century due to the invention of electricity (thanks to the New Deal programs of Tennessee Valley Authority and the creation of electric cooperatives).  It brought modernization and vast amounts of projects that brought employment for many following the Great Depression.  However, the middle class in the South has always been an anomaly.  Then you throw in the additional variable of race, where mostly poor and middle class whites would allow themselves to be manipulated (and to the day still do) by wealthier whites to hate and commit acts of oppression against people of color (non-whites).  This led to a stratification of economics on racial terms and beacon an on-going problem where many white Southerners doesn't like (whether overtly or covertly) non-white Southerners as neighbors, coworkers, or even as fellow citizens.  This rule of mindset shows itself in the way Southern states, more predominately in rural, less economically empowered regions, there will be an immediate backlash or outright rejection of the election of any form of leadership that isn't white or displays WASP values.  Interestingly enough, blacks haven't shown such bias against white leadership in areas where they are reside in large numbers.

However, as the past has shown that there are some neophytes within black political circles in the South whom will exercise some form of reverse racial bias against black politicos and even some progressive whites to win political races in majority black districts.  This has occurred multiple times the major Southern cities in Birmingham, Atlanta, Memphis, and New Orleans.  What is more is alarming is that state Democratic parties has given the nod-and-wink to instants where this occurred to in statewide offices.  This year alone in the states of Alabama and Georgia, the state Democratic leaders along with the black leaders have thrown strong and populist black gubernatorial candidates under the bus for white males with electability issues.  In the case of Alabama on the basis of his (Artur Davis') vote on the health care reform legislation in Congress, and the case of Georgia because the state party leadership felt that the former governor (Roy Barnes) was more electable to rural whites over his opponent (Thurbert Baker).

In the congressional races of candidates like Terri Sewell, the issues amongst black leaders with her more progressive, egalitarian style of campaigning because she was woeing the white and LGBT vote of Alabama's 7th congressional district.  Her candidacy unnerved the same forces that have been working behind the scenes  that has maintained power in Birmingham and Montgomery with Alabama Black Caucus in the state legislature.  On the other hand, the power-tripping and egotistical actions of Georgia congressman Sanford Bishop with him being one of the 3 black congressional reps implicated in giving scholarships allocated for citizens of their district for their own family or kin.  This along with the by-default racially bias mindset of the 2nd congressional district of Georgia may have cost him his seat to a white Republican, whom has a horrible track history in the Georgia General Assembly.

Racially omission has played a key role in the race between Alabama's 2nd congressional district representative, Bobby Bright and Montgomery council member Martha Roby.  There has literally been a painting and campaigning of white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant values over the more racially diverse district, which includes the majority black city of Montgomery.  The race itself is an example of this issue where there is nothing being offered by either candidate for the districts 25+% black constituency.    

In conclusion, this whole political overview shows what is going on in our society involving politics and race along with economics.  It's just a microcosm of what is going on nationwide in other major areas like the Midwest, Northeast, and the West Coast where there are bubbles of racial and ethnic diversity.

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