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Operation Reach B.L.A.C.K. is a Pan-African Blog with an acronym that stands for Building Leadership Awareness and Cultural Knowledge.

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(Opinions, Observations, and Commentary)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Double Standard facing Barack Obama . . .

I haven't had the time to post anything new lately. But a comment I made over and Jack and Jill is apparently getting some attention.

This was done in response to a blog on Jack and Jill, titled, Hillary Trying to Sabotage Obama for November.

Thanks to rikyrah for giving the shout out: Sometimes Our Readers Say It So Well.

It's nice to know that I'm not the only one who's feeling this way.

So here it is:

Sorry for the long post, but I just saw something that’s driving me crazy.


OMG!?!? The media is actually giving Hillary positive press for her tantrums over the weekend.


I’m not kidding. They’re spinning it as a rallying cry for feminists. Taking lead from Tina Fey’s sketch on SNL, her tantrum is somehow being spun into an ownership of the word, “bi*ch.” You have people on tv talking about the double standards that women face in politics (i.e., men are assertive and women are bi*ches).


Now, I won’t deny that women face double standards. And I know that there is some truth in that analysis. But this is not Jane Doe, this is Hillary Clinton. The media is doing nothing but excusing her behavior.
Guess what, that “double standard” theory doesn’t fly when her opponent has gone out of his way to be as respectful as he possibly can towards her (despite her repeated attacks). I could see if she was running against some sexist prick. But she’s not. Yet she wants to take her anger at the media and re-direct it towards Obama and his success?


Why doesn’t the media focus it’s attention on how disrespectful she has been towards him? She won’t acknowledge his victories; she mocks his message; she scolds his supporters; she calls him an empty suit; she calls his words, “cheap,” and his hope, “false.” The list goes on and on.
I don’t care if she’s a woman, man or whatever . . . when you’re wrong, you’re wrong.


“Shame on you Barack Obama”?!?!?! Who the hell is she to talk to him like he’s some 4 year old? This ain’t pre-school and her condescending attitude is getting real tired, real fast.


Senator Obama is a grown a*s man. He’s just as accomplished as she is, yet she wants to go around the country and call him some naive rookie??? She dismisses his supporters and ignores the impact that he has had.

It’s never good enough. He can win 11 straight states by an average of 33%, but it’s still NEVER GOOD ENOUGH! He can expand the Democratic party by bringing in Independents, cross-over Republicans and first-time voters, but it’s NEVER GOOD ENOUGH! He can draw crowds of 20,000 but it’s NEVER GOOD ENOUGH! He can win more states (24 to 11), have a commanding lead in Pledged delegates, have a strong lead in the popular vote . . . but it’s still NEVER GOOD ENOUGH

No. We still have to hear the media talk about a Clinton comeback, even when the MATH says it’s highly unlikely.


She needs to stop making excuses. She needs to recognize that (beleive it or not) this brotha is just doing a better job at reaching the voters than she is. Plain and simple.


Her stunts are going to backfire on her. It has nothing to do with being a man or woman. Democratic primary voters don’t like negative politics . . . it’s as simple as that.


You know, I’d love to see the press give Obama as much room to be a stereotypical black man as they give Clinton to be a stereotypical woman. I’d love to see Obama get the opportunity to go straight up gangsta and show his a*s! But we all know that would never happen. The second he shows ANY aggression whatsoever, is the moment people see him as the “angry black man.”


This goes to show that there are differences in how the media treats race and gender. I’m not saying that they’re better or worse, just different. I’m just gonna say it. This country has an instinct to protect white women. It can be a burden at times (i.e., Cult of True Womanhood) but it's still there. Hillary gets her feelings hurt and voters rush to her aide. She throws a fit and we make excuses because, after all, we can’t forget those double standards, right?


Yet, at the same time, we have an instinct to FEAR black men.


Tell me, what would happen if Obama went on a tirade against Hillary, like she’s done over the weekend??? What would happen if he (gasp) raised his voice to this white woman? What would happen if he spent all of his time talking about the “white man,” the way Hillary talks about the “boys club?”


Rick Lazio, a white man, found out when he “invaded her personal space.” If he took the fall, you can imagine what would happen to Obama’s black a*s the second he steps out of line.


Hillary faces a lot of obstacles through sexism, no doubt. But there are moments where she benefits as well. There are moments where she has the luxury to portray herself as the victim to garner sympathy from voters and the media. There are moments where she can, as Melissa Harris-Lacewell (a black woman, professor) notes, slip in and out of her “Scarlett O’Hara” routine. It’s a prime example of how mainstream media discusses gender bias without recognizing the white privilege that often comes with it.


You want to talk about double standards? Obama has run his campaign under the interrogation of white approval ever since he made that speech at the DNC in 2004. He knows he can’t do or say certain things because he can’t afford to make white folk uncomfortable, especially when running against a white woman.


Trust me, we all know the routine. Smile . . . show your teeth . . . get that base out of your voice . . . don’t look them straight in the eye . . . don’t show emotion . . . make them comfortable and they might call you one of “those good black people,” and throw you a few crumbs.


Once again, I know that we have to fight sexism as vigorously as we fight racism. And we should be doing a better job at it.


But I also know that there are many “oppressed” white women who would never trade places with my black a*s. That same “oppressed” white woman has been quick to clutch her purse and call the cops when she sees me in her neighborhood after 8:00pm. Hillary reminds me of one of those types of people.


All I'm saying is that it's more complicated than the media would like to suggest.


So to the media: Fine, point out the double standards. But don’t make excuses for Hillary’s poor and divisive behavior. And don’t pretend like Obama doesn’t walk a tight rope everyday as well.


Obama caught hell just for saying, “you’re likeable, enough” because people didn’t like the tone of his voice. He caught hell for the “snub” because he happened to be talking to someone else when she came by. I swear, I almost fell out of my chair late last week when I heard a pundit criticize Obama for WRITING ON HIS NOTEPAD while Hillary spoke at the debate. I guess he was being disrespectful because he wasn’t looking at her when she talked. Give me a break!


I can’t make this any clearer. Obama has to RUN AWAY from issues of race for fear of being labled the “black candidate.” It’s the only way he can win. Yet, Hillary gets to embrace “girl power” in ways Obama could NEVER embrace “black power.” Now you’ve got Tina Fey saying “Bi*ch is the new black.” WTF does that mean?


Some see Hillary as a victim. But some of us also know what discrimination is. And for a lot of us, we see Hillary as a grown a*s woman who knows exactly what she’s doing. She conveniently plays off of gender oppression and white privelege every chance she gets. Some of us don’t see her as a victim, and never have. What we see is a privileged person who thought the white house was her entitlement. And she can’t stand the fact that this uppity negroe didn’t wait his turn in line.


But the media keeps falling for her BS. The narrative remains the same . . . everything goes back to “POOR HILLARY”

1 comments:

  • rikyrah says:
    February 26, 2008 at 11:25 AM

    This was such an excellent comment. What Obama has done is stunning. One of these days, I'm going to write more about just what he's done, and how he should be respected.

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