Just a Theory

By David E. Wheeler

Posts about Barack Obama

Racial Identity Is Not a Zero Sum Game

Sarah E. Gaither, writing for Vox:

I can’t speak for all biracial people. And I’m not saying that Meghan Markle and Barack Obama and other celebrities should be removed from the black community and added to the biracial community; racial identity is not and should not be a zero-sum game. It is clear that everyone needs positive representation, especially racial and ethnic minorities and women. But the either/or system that so much of our society uses simply doesn’t work when a biracially identified person is involved.

I struggle to cancel out my stupid meat brain’s automatic categorization of people based on superficialities. People are a lot happier when they’re free to assert their identities for themselves — or choose not to at all — than when others impose at-best misguided perceptions on others.

enblogment: For Obama

Following up on my enblogment of Kerry four years ago, and with a tip of the hat to Lawrence Lessig, I am thrilled to endorse Barack Obama for President of the United States of America. I voted last night (gotta love Oregon vote by mail!).

The single best thing you can read for reasons why I endorse Obama is The New Yorker’s endorsement. But in case you’re not an elitist liberal like me, perhaps the endorsement of one of these other fine sources might help to sway you:

Personally, I believe that Barack Obama has the steady hand and unflappable personality to be able with withstand the worst that the next four years will throw at him. And, should he win, there will be a lot of shit to deal with, from accusations of stealing the election to confrontations with belligerent foreign heads of state. In the debates he was cool and composed, completely unfazed by McCain’s bellicosity, and that composure will serve him extremely well as President, both in his role in the bully pulpit and in dealing with attacks from within and without. I don’t agree with him on every detail of his policies, and I expect to, in some ways, be disappointed. But I’ll take disagreement and disappointment over the sheer abhorrence of the last eight years any time.

As for McCain, well, I was never a supporter, never even interested in him as a candidate. He was kind of interesting to people I respected in 2000, but that’s about the best I can say about him. What I find bizarre is the two reactions to the McCain campaign that seem to be coming from McCain apologists in the punditry and the press. On the one hand, there are those who think that McCain is in some kind of bubble, unaware of how nasty his own campaign has become. On the other hand, there are those who think that McCain knows exactly what he’s doing with the direction of the campaign. All I can say is, regardless of which of these is true (or some combination therein), is this really the sort of person you want to lead the United States of America? Someone who is either so out of touch that he has no idea what his staff is up to, or who is so obsessed with his immediate goals that he’s willing to drag his entire operation to the most debased of levels? Neither represents leadership qualities. All I can say is, “No thanks.”

Barack Obama for President. He’s the right man for the job at the right time.

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