Thursday, March 15, 2012

The upside to uncovering Obama's "radical" past

As most of you are aware, the late Breitbart's crew thinks there's some hay to be made by digging up minutia about President Obama's past. Their first effort revealed that he had been a panelist in Chicago at a play about the life of community organizer Saul Alinsky. And next they unveiled the video tape of the first African American President of the Harvard Law Review introducing Harvard Law Professor Derrick Bell.

For those of us who care about the effects of racism in this country, what they're doing is providing us with a collection of President Obama's long-term and deep commitment to these issues (you paying attention Tavis and Cornel?)

For example, the latest efforts are about President Obama's deep ties to fellow Harvard Law School grad Cassandra Butts. Oh my! We learn that she's actually committed to affirmative action and thinks race is a factor in the health disparities between blacks and whites in this country...and she's a close friend and advisor to the President. Apparently she helped in the selection of "wise Latina" Sonja Sotomayor for the Supreme Court and also worked with AG Holder on the case against voter ID's (short update here: Take all that in for a African American Harvard Law grad helping the first African American President pick the first Latina on the Supreme Court and providing support for the first African American Attorney General in fighting voter suppression. WOW. And you wonder why the haters are running scared?)

Here's how they end the article about her:

...despite the wishes that Obama would be a “post-racial” president, Butts told The Wall Street Journal just days after Obama’s election that he doesn’t consider himself “post-racial.”

“When people say that, they seem to suggest that we are beyond the issue of race, that issues of race don’t matter,” she said. “I don't think that is necessarily the case. I don't think Barack considers himself post-racial in that way. He will tell you he thinks race does matter.”

Having worked to remake the judicial branch in harmony with Bell’s theories, Butts is now at work remaking American development aid as Obama’s appointee to the Millennium Challenge Corporation, doling out millions in American taxpayer dollars.

She is both a symptom, and a cause, of the important role Critical Race Theory plays in the Obama administration's governance.

Contrary to what they're trying to accomplish, it warms my heart to hear things like this and know that profoundly wise people like Cassandra Butts are involved in the important work of this administration.

But the Breitbart crew are not the only ones digging up these gold mines. Over at The Gateway Pundit (sorry I'm not going to provide a link to that one), they've unearthed a 1990 article in the Daily Herald titled "Harvard student tackles racism at core."

“There’s certainly racism here. There are certain burdens that are placed, more emotionally at this point than concretely,” Obama said.

“Professors may treat black students differently, sometimes by being, sort of, more dismissive, sometimes by being more, sort of, careful because they think, you know, they think that somehow we can’t cope in the classroom,” he said.

Obama sees the inner cities as the front lines of racism.

“It’s critical at this stage for people who want to see genuine change to focus locally. And it is crucial that we figure out how to rebuild the core of leadership and institutions in these communities,” he said.

For five years before law school, Obama took on that task in Chicago. As the director of a program that tried to bring South Side churches, unions and block associations together on projects, Obama was not trying to solve local problems, he said. Instead he sought to construct something more lasting — a forum for the community, “I’m interested in organizations, not movements, because movements dissipate and organizations don’t,” Obama said.

America suffered when the movements of the 1960s dissipated, he said. Those movements succeeded in raising doubts about harmful traditions of sexism and racism, but failed to offer a viable alternative.

“Hopefully, more and more people will begin to feel their story is somehow part of this larger story of how we’re going to reshape America in a way that is less mean-spirited and more generous,” Obama said.

Fascinating stuff! The part about being interested in organizations rather than movements perhaps explains why he decided to enter politics.

Its interesting to me that its the haters digging this stuff up and spreading it around rather than people on the left exploring and extolling President Obama's roots. But I'll take it where I can get it. I hope they keep it up!


  1. you are right on the money, smartypants.

    and, it's this kind of analysis from you is why I click on this blog everyday.

    you always try to go deeper.

    1. Thanks so much for your support rikyrah. It means a lot!

  2. These guys (the right "intelligencia") believe their own press. They actually think that this garbage will advance their cause with members of the non-lunatic right.

    Very few people actually think that what you do in college affects how you act in life after 50. Mainly because what you do in college most of the time doesn't particularly affect what you do after 50. It's the time between 30 and 45 that affect you at 50.

    Santorum's speckled college past is pretty much non-relevant to what he is today. That's why all the smoking, drinking and carrying on is not resonating as being a "smoking gun" on him.

    This stuff isn't going to affect what anyone thinks about Obama, assuming you are talking about people who truly haven't made up their minds. For those of us who've actually made up our minds to support him, it only re-inforces the positive vibes.

  3. This just reminds me of the power of hatred! Those driven by this motivation are almost alway unable to be rational, loving or have empathy.

    I find these individuals to, essentially, be caught in a time warp. The world moved forward but they did not. This constraint feel pitiful to me. I cannot imagine what it would feel like to be in their heart.

    Their desperate grasping and gasping for a world that no longer exist is cause for pity. After all they have done to AA, after all the effort to pretend that AA are lesser, frightening, less intelligent but still they rise!

    President Obama is showing them everything they are not and can never be, everything they tried to rid the world of, everything they are scared of but still he rises.

    That must be an awful place!

  4. I like the idea that it's the haters digging stuff up too and I also hope they keep it up. Their supporters will more likely read what THEY 'discover', and even though it's presented with slant, I'm banking on one or two of their numbers seeing beyond the bias. I'm banking on a light going on for a few of their readers, because I don't want to believe that ALL their clientelle are sponges.

    BTW, SP, have a wonderful vacation, filled with the kind of activities that YOU find rejuvenating! The rest of us will hold the political fort until you return. :-)


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