Let’s talk about race, baby

Tea Partiers, Republicans, Democrats — we are all racists.

by Aaron Bingea

In yesterdayâÄôs letter âÄúPerhaps America was not ready for a black president,âÄù the author defended critics of President Barack Obama from a protester at the Bachmann-Palin rally who was quoted as saying, âÄúPeople canâÄôt stand a black man smarter than them.âÄù The author refuted the notion that race had anything to do with the strong opposition to Obama and instead cited the fact that the president âÄúâĦ is systematically destroying this great nationâÄù as the source for his and othersâÄô discontent. Now, I am not going to suggest that the author is racist. Maybe he does look at people in a perfectly objective manner, free of negative stereotypes associated with skin color. I am willing to say that everybody else in America is a full-fledged racist. I am racist, you are racist. I could take the time to back these statements up with an infinite amount of social science evidence, but letâÄôs be honest: Skin color matters to us. Racism is pretty much basic human nature. I digress back to the case of black Obama. The author said that he is âÄúdestroying this great nation.âÄù Members of the Tea Party/GOP have called him socialist, communist, fascist, Chairman Mao and even the Antichrist. A congressman shouted him down in a joint session and a large number of parents took their kids out of school when the president gave a speech to students. These are just some instances that show an extreme reaction to a president who has thus far been no more left leaning than Democratic presidents before him, and by a majority, has enacted moderate policies. To say racism is not a factor in the opposition against our first black president is simply naïve. We, especially our young generation, must not shy away from the discussion of race and its power to prime negative feelings. We should be able to call out racism and acknowledge it without being accused of pulling the defense mechanism known as the âÄúrace card.âÄù LetâÄôs not fear the âÄúRâÄù word. Instead, letâÄôs acknowledge that it is a problem here in America, and certain races have and continue to be hurt by it. LetâÄôs talk about race. Aaron Bingea University undergraduate student