Paul R. Lehman, Opinion writer’s points fail to discredit President ObamaJune 3, 2012 at 6:35 pm | Posted in American Bigotry, American Racism, blacks, Congress, Disrespect, equality, Ethnicity in America, fairness, justice, Oklahoma education, Prejudice, President Obama, Race in America, Tulsa, whites | 2 Comments
Tags: African Americans, Birthers, black, Democrats, European Americans, Opinion writer, politics, Prejudice, President Obama, race, Republicans, The Oklahoman, white
In a recent article on the “Opinion” page of the Oklahoman (5/26/12) entitled “If only Obama were white,” tries to use as argument proof, the old “if only” technique. In other words, something would not be the way it is “if only” for reasons other than what has been offered. For example, the beauty queen would be perfect if only she didn’t have that mole on her cheek. The point of the article is to label President Obama as unfit to be President for a variety of reasons, except for the reason he is African American, which point actually underlies the argument. Let us take a look at what was said.
The article begins with the statement “Mitt Romney leads Barack Obama 62-27 percent in Oklahoma, according to Sooner Poll. Predictably, some Democrats blame race for that result.” So, what is wrong with viewing President Obama’s ethnicity as part of the reason for the pool results? To say that his ethnicity did not factor into the poll results would certainly be incorrect. The article continued by noting that “The Tulsa World quotes one poll participant as saying a ‘racial factor’ drives some opposition to Obama.” For certain, that statement would seem logical given the political history of Oklahoma.
A statement follows with “Another credits money for Republican success in Oklahoma. Of course!” This statement seems to suggest that Republican money plays no role in Oklahoma politics as if the entire concept is preposterous. In essence, the Opinion writer thinks that Obama’s ethnicity and Republican money have no bearing to the results of the poll. A commonly used paraprosdokian makes the point that seems to fit this writer—Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
The Opinion writer tries to justify the point of President Obama’s failings by stating that “The ram-through passages of Obamacare, projected tripling of national debt, an unemployment rate that’s been higher for longer than any time since the Great Depression—voters would think all of that was great if only Obama were white.” What an asinine statement that suggests the voters do not have the intelligence to check the fact for themselves. Again, the Opinion writer either has no grasp of reality or likes to play loose with fantasies. As citizens we are allowed our free speech, but we are not permitted to create our own facts. One fact concerning the President is that he does not work alone. America has three parts of government—Congress had to pass the Healthcare bill before President Obama could sign it into law.
The reference to the national debt tripling is very misleading. The way it is stated suggests that the debt was zero when President Obama took office. The fact is President Obama has the lowest level of debt increase than any of the past three presidents. Check the facts. Also, the reference to the unemployment rate and its status again seems to suggest that it was low before President Obama took office. If we check the facts again, we discover that the employment rate was high and getting higher just when President Obama was elected.
The Opinion writer’s statement relating to “if only Obama were white” introduces an element of ignorance and bigotry into the article. What does a person’s skin complexion have to do with his or her intelligence? Do degrees of knowledge and wisdom come only in skin complexion? That seems to be the suggestion of the Opinion writer. If the writer is suggesting that President Obama somehow gets a pass for his so-called deficiencies just by being African American, then the writer continues to insult the American people’s intelligence. Although for many Americans, President Obama’s ethnicity did play a part in his election, the majority of Americans voted for him because of their concerns for the issues. The writer evidently introduces the element of color and so-called race to try and gain support for the illogical argument presented. For most people, including Oklahomans, that does not work. If they are bigots, nothing anyone says will change their views; if they are not bigots, they ignore the color references anyway.
The Opinion writer, not to be outdone, shifts the focus from color to party politics. The comments become more sarcastic and silly because if one wanted to build an argument with weight, then one would use empirical evidence rather than simply making cliché-like comments: “And if only Democrats weren’t forced to get by on campaign-cash scraps from their impoverished trial lawyer and Hollywood allies. Please.” What, pray tell, is the point of that statement? Money is an important element in the election, so what does the source have to do with the money? The writer mentions nothing about Republican contributors.
Finally, the Opinion writer makes the statement that “If only the Democratic Party would treat Oklahomans with respect, it might do better in elections.”When has the Democratic Party not treated Oklahomans with respect? That “if only” statement from the writer and the Republican Party goes to underscore the fact that they have been treating Oklahomans with disrespect. They show the disrespect by continually telling lies about President Obama and the government. They tell these lies in the hope that the voting public will not check the facts—just believe what they are told.
One might imagine that writing on the “opinion” page the writer would use facts to support the opinions offered. That, as we has been seen, is not necessarily the case. The readers should use more caution in accepting what is being offered and not be so trusting. Logic tells us that we can only be beaten by an attacker is if we are on the same level. The Opinion writer should give Oklahomans some credit for knowing what level they are on.