Paul R. Lehman, The GOP’s war against Obama fueled with hate and fear

September 16, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Posted in African American, Bigotry in America, blacks, Congress, Disrespect, equality, European American, fairness, justice, Media and Race, Prejudice, President, President Obama, presidential election, Republican Convention, Respect for President, whites | 1 Comment
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When Barack Obama was elected President of the United States of America, conservative elements of the GOP went into shock. All their plans and victories at the local, state, and nation levels were now in question because the totally unexpected had happened. Never in their lifetime did these conservatives believe America would elect an African American for president. So, after the shock wore off and even before Obama made it to the Oval Office, they gathered together to plan how to undo the damage to their master plan by getting rid of Obama.

Whether one considers Obama’s ethnicity or political party the reason for the GOP‘s wanting him to be removed, the fact still remained that he must be removed. Part of the problem resided in the fact that Obama won the election, a phenomenon that was never supposed to happen. What went wrong? Some people believed that the country suffered a brief period of insanity because people in their “right mind” would have never elected an African American President. So what is the reason behind wanting to remove Obama from office? Part of the answer lies in what Obama represents rather than Obama the individual.

When Africans were introduced into slavery in America, the image of the slave as property had to be established, maintained and promoted in order for the system to operate effectively. The first order of this business was to strip away any and all human and personal worth of the African slave. This effort was made effective by removing any vestiges of the slave’s former life and history and remaking him as a less-than-human thing or property. His names, Negro, black, slave, etc… give no indication of a language, geography, culture. All his new names placed him in the system of slavery, and the only value he exhibited was either via work or the market place (auction block). His being represented nothing that the majority society viewed as deserving respect or value.

Although the idea of democracy as stated in America’s “Declaration of Independence” 1776, declared that “all men were created equal,” nevertheless, America forgot to include the African Americans and other slaves as men in the 1787 “Constitution.” They were listed as “three fifths,” a person. The problem that resulted from these concepts of democracy and slavery juxtaposed created two additional concepts: 1, many Americans knew that African/African Americans were human being like themselves, but was made less so by society, not God or biology. 2, Many Americans accepted the concept of African/African Americans being less than human regardless of the fallacy. Although Americans in both the North and South shared in both concepts, more Americans in the North accepted the 1st concept while the majority in the South shared the 2nd. Today, the two concepts are represented in politics with the Democrats identified with the 1st concept, and the GOP representing the 2nd.

Since the Civil War, the two concepts of the African American have been germane to the progress of American society as represented in the various Civil Rights Acts. Unfortunately, laws do not change individual concepts, so although society though government and science has attempted to correct the injustice and fallacy, many people hold on to the 2nd concept religiously. Their reason for holding on to the concept is based in fear of losing their place of prominence in society. That is, if the African Americans are equal to all people, then they, the people representing the 2nd concept, are less than privileged—they lose value.

So, when Obama was elected President, the GOP felt the immediate blow to their belief system and social status. Damage control had to be the first order of business.  The objective they set regarding Obama was to make him appear totally unfit to be President by any means necessary. The efforts to discredit him as inept did not work, so they took another approach, to make him not one of us—someone alien, not American, a foreigner. That campaign is still in progress. In addition to not being American, these critics accused President Obama of being a socialist, communist, Muslim, and a host of other things that might cause him to appear unfavorable.

With a continuous barrage of negative charges against President Obama, the GOP believes they can convince enough people to their way of thinking in order to defeat President Obama in the election.  The fact that Obama, an African American, is President is a reality the GOP cannot accept, not because of Obama personally, but because of what he represents—a changing America. The change that is taking place in America is a change that takes away the prestige, privilege, and power that was once associated with being European American (white).  The battle now is for the GOP to try and forestall as much change as possible; hence, the phrase “we need to take back our country.” Because Obama represents change, he also represents the enemy, and the enemy must be destroyed. Former President Bill Clinton said during his speech at the Democratic Convention words that address the problem: “Though I often disagree with Republicans, I never learned to hate them the way the far right that now controls their party seems to hate President Obama and the Democrats.” Hate seems to be the fuel that propels their actions.

We should not think that the battle against Obama is weakening.  Obama’s election to President did more than indicate a positive change in America, it also brought to light the many bigots that were hiding behind façades.  One irony that was created by the election campaign includes European Americans who say they differ with Obama’s politics, but get accused of being biased against him. Their complaint is similar to the African Americans who get accused of voting for Obama only because he is African American. When the GOP declared war against Obama being re-elected, they colored the field with prejudice, so identifying the European Americans who simply differ with Obama’s politics get caught in the mix. Sorry.

Many members of the GOP believe strongly that their party will be victorious in this election. One commentary by Victor Davis Hanson compared the election to the classic story “The Tortoise and the Hare,” with Obama being the hare. He stated that “The country is also not quite ready to confess that it went a little crazy in 2008 and voted for the embarrassing banalities of ‘hope and change’ offered by a little-known senator with a thin resume and little national experience.” He continued by offering some scenarios that might befall Obama and Romney and concluded with “Barring a real recovery or sudden war, the steady, plodding Romney tortoise is ever so slowly winning the race against the flashier—surging, yet always fading—Obama hare.”

So now the country “went a little crazy” for voting Obama into office because it was duped by his con game. Maybe this time around the country will “go a little sane” and look at the issues and elect the best man for the job. In any event, a change is coming, and any change that diminishes hate is a good change.

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  1. Amen, I’ll take hope over hate every single time! The people of this Nation are amazing. Governed by imperfect people many of whom assume them to be utterly stupid they make choices based on what they believe is right. So in the midst of a world where for many the idea of democracy and the concept of freedom is not only just unimaginable, it’s illegal… here stands this Nation, a people united through diversity, not afraid or ashamed to make a choice grounded not bigotry or lies or fear or hate, but in hope.


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