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Thursday, June 2, 2011

You're a Racist. I'm a Racist. Everyone is Racist.

The day after Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, a guy I used to work with came into my office with his cellphone out. Barely able to contain his glee he thrust his phone toward me and told me to take a look. The picture on his phone was in "celebration" of Obama's election and it showed Aunt Jemima as the Statue of Liberty. I was honestly offended and I told him not to bother me with things like that. He thought I was an ass and we had didn't get on well after that.

A day or so later I got a multi-media text on my phone with a similar picture.

A few days ago a cartoon began circulating on Facebook of a Warner Brothers cartoon from either the late 30s or early 40s with a horrendous caricature of an African-American hunting Bugs Bunny. The title of the Facebook post was "Obama in the Early Days."

When people who oppose Obama for his policies resort to this level of stupidity, it kills credibility for all of us.

I don't blame people who support Obama and his policies for using the stupidity of those who use jokes like the ones I pointed out earlier against people who oppose Obama. It hurts the entire population, it hurts the opposition, it hurts the President, and it particularly hurts members of the African-American community when this kind of stupidity exists in the hearts of people.

Racism is everywhere, and it is not the domain of any single race. You're a racist, I'm a racist, the most spiritual amongst us are racist, the most evil among us are racist. If you deny that, and claim you are not racist, you are lying to yourself.

The task at hand is to understand the racism that is bred into all of us and reject it whenever it rears its ugly head. Like anything else we do to improve our selves, being honestly aware of what is around us and within us is the first step.

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