Saturday, October 11, 2008

Is This What It Is all About?

I have written from time to time about all of the racist e-mails I have received during this presidential campaign. The winner so far in terms of sheer disgust is that cropped photo of Barack Obama polishing the shoes of Sarah Palin. One of my very best friends (I generally don't rate my friends on scales of 1 to 10, but I love this guy for who he is) has moved away from the southeast Michigan area to sunnier climes. He is now deciding how to vote based upon his primal feelings about the way that blacks in Detroit have mismanaged local politics. Kwame Kilpatrick has stepped down from the office of mayor after more than six months of highly publicized stores of his having an affair with a top aide and lying about it under oath, costing the city of Detroit more than 9 million dollars in a civil lawsuit. In a phone call this week, my friend pointed out that Coleman Young's son is running for mayor in a special election. Coleman Young, for the unknowing, ran Detroit as a personal fiefdom for 20 years and most people (including me) believe the Young was the one person most responsible for the free fall of the city into a third world-type aberration. Please keep in mind as I proceed with the rest of this writing that the only thing that Kilpatrick, Young and Obama have in common is the color of their skin. I refer to this bias as the primal racist theory and after a couple of cups of caffeine jolting through my brain, wonder if it is just possible that some unknown evolutionary process is at work causing white people who, if they had been born less than 200 years ago, could have been slave owners, to just naturally consider themselves superior to all things black William F. Buckley, the guru of modern conservative Republican thinking, asserted that whites, being superior, were well within their rights to discriminate against blacks. “The White community is so entitled,” he wrote, “because, for the time being, it is the advanced race.” He, of course, later disavowed this type of thinking, only because it served his own personal interests to do so.

For my Detroit-area friends I have tried to understand the preference for McCain/Palin in the context of this background which, admittedly, is not a pretty one. I also admit to bringing one of my own biases into the presidential consideration which is that our society seems to bring lowest common denominator-types into the presidential mix. Consider Bush and. Kerry just four years ago as the most representative example. The net result of all of this on my thinking is that I really and truly have found it difficult to understand how kind and decent people throughout America could ever consider Palin a worthwhile candidate. The hatred and sheer ineptitude she brings to the table are amazing and frightening to me as, most simply put, they represent exactly the same form and logic that Hitler used in the 1930s, and that Joe McCathy used in the early 1950s to demonize people.

Another piece of this puzzle in trying to understand this phenomenon and the apparent love affair that a segment of our electorate have for Palin clicked into place today. What follows is an excerpt from another e-mail:

---makes a person think. I truly believe we are living in the end times and pray all those I love and care for will come to accept Christ as their Savior.

This will make you re-think: A Trivia question in Sunday School:

How long is the beast allowed to have authority in Revelations?

Revelations Chapter 13 tells us it is 42 months, and you know what that is.

Almost a four-year term of a Presidency.

All I can say is 'Lord, Have mercy on us!'

According to The Book of Revelations the anti-Christ is: The anti-Christ will
be a man, in his 40's, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive the nations with
persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal....the prophecy says
that people will flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace,
and when he is in power, will destroy everything..

Do we recognize this description??

I STRONGLY URGE each one of you to send this as many times as
you can! Each opportunity that you have to send it to a friend or media it!
I refuse to take a chance on this unknown candidate who came out of nowhere.

From: Dr. John Tisdale

Dear Friends,

As I was listening to a news program last night, I watched in horror as Barack Obama made the statement with pride. . ..'we are no longer a Christian nation; we are now a nation of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, . . .' As with so many other statements I've heard him (and his wife) make, I never thought I'd see the day that I'd hear something like that from a presidential candidate in this nation.

To think our forefathers fought and died for the right for our nation to be a Christian nation--and to have this man say with pride that we are no longer that. How far this nation has come from what our founding fathers intended it to be.

I hope that each of you will do what I'm doing now--send your concerns, written simply and sincerely, to the Christians on your email list. With God's help, and He is still in control of this nation and all else, we can show this man and the world in November that we are, indeed, still a Christian nation!

Please pray for our nation!

So I ask the question: Is this what it is all about? Have I been missing the point all along? Are the objections to this man named Barack Hussein Obama based on another claimed association that I have simply ignored because I perceived that it just bordered on sheer lunacy? Or is it part of standard fundamental religious thinking in America that the end is nearing and that, if Obama is elected, he will take us there? From where I sit it looks like the Republican party has already done a pretty damn good job of getting us there all by itself, without the help of a young black kid raised in the heartland of America who has clearly distinguished himself in terms of intellect and conduct to be utterly fit to be our next president. I, too, pray for my nation, but I don't have to take a bite out of my soul, or anybody else's either. to do so. I'll answer my own question. That is not what it is all about.

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