Tuesday, October 07, 2008

I Fail a Race Test

So, it turns out that I am racially prejudiced. And not in a good way, either, like wanting to honor American Indians at football games.

Nope, with all this scary talk about 60's radical terrorist William Ayers being the evil puppetmaster behind Barack Obama, I had in my mind's eye that Ayers was a black man.

I'm trying to unravel it now. Did I hear at one point he was a Black Panther? No, he was a Weathermen, but maybe I heard it differently somewhere. I know I wasn't mistaking him for Rev. Wright, but that controversy may have played into as well.

In any case, I'm very disappointed with myself for letting even a bit of racial prejudice seep into my own images of the controversy. It just shows how effective smears are, which is depressing.

However, in a way, I'm glad this Ayers thing is seeing the light of day. As I learn more about it, the more it seems exactly like all the Obama-is-a-Muslim nonsense. Read the NY Times piece here.

Here's what is comes down to: Ayers was a radical 60s protester who set bombs off to destroy property. He is now a professor and an education reformer. Obama was on the same board as Ayers of a non-political, non-profit that gave money to schools. They both live in the same neighborhood, and Obama once went to a neighborhood coffee at Ayers house at the beginning of Obama's political career (one of many Obama went to). There's no indication they know each other very well, or that Ayers has any kind of influence whatsoever on Obama.

It is more likely that Sarah Palin will advocate that Alaska secede from the union than it is that Ayers will wield any kind of influence over Obama, or that Obama shares any radical goals with Ayers.

Here's the last few paragraphs in the NY Times piece:

Mr. Obama’s friends said that history was utterly irrelevant to judging the candidate, because Mr. Ayers was never a significant influence on him. Even some conservatives who know Mr. Obama said that if he was drawn to Ayers-style radicalism, he hid it well.

“I saw no evidence of a radical streak, either overt or covert, when we were together at
Harvard Law School,” said Bradford A. Berenson, who worked on the Harvard Law Review with Mr. Obama and who served as associate White House counsel under President Bush. Mr. Berenson, who is backing Mr. McCain, described his fellow student as “a pragmatic liberal” whose moderation frustrated others at the law review whose views were much farther to the left.

Some 15 years later, left-leaning backers of Mr. Obama have the same complaint. “We’re fully for Obama, but we disagree with some of his stands,” said
Tom Hayden, the 1960s activist and former California legislator, who helped organize Progressives for Obama. His group opposes the candidate’s call for sending more troops to Afghanistan, for instance, “because we think it’s a quagmire just like Iraq,” he said. “A lot of our work is trying to win over progressives who think Obama is too conservative.”

Mr. Hayden, 68, said he has known Mr. Ayers for 45 years and was on the other side of the split in the radical antiwar movement that led Mr. Ayers and others to form the Weathermen.

But Mr. Hayden said he saw attempts to link Mr. Obama with bombings and radicalism as “typical campaign shenanigans.”“If Barack Obama says he’s willing to talk to foreign leaders without preconditions,” Mr. Hayden said, “I can imagine he’d be willing to talk to Bill Ayers about schools. But I think that’s about as far as their relationship goes.”

In the end, this is first of many swiftboatings of Obama. The only reason it is an issue is that McCain can't win this election based on policy, judgement or character. It's just one more way that McCain is following Bush's footsteps into the abyss.

1 comment:

Robert Sievers said...

Personally, if *I* were going to start a career in politcs, I think even a dolt like me would have better judgement about whose home I would be in when I launched my career.

Now it turns out Obama gives money to a group rife with voting fraud for guess who, Obama. He is from Chicago where the motto is "vote early, vote often".