Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Term Paper

Christopher Hitchens says two things here worth repeating. The first is his observation that even if Obama "pulls off a mathematical nomination victory, he has completely lost the first, fine, careless rapture of a post-racial and post-resentment political movement..." Yes. April has been the cruelest month for Obama. The entire justification, rationale, for his candidacy has withered before the searing gaseous eruptions and pyroclastic verborrhea of the Reverend Wright. But this ground has been amply covered, and we need not retrace our steps tonight.

The other point he makes deals with Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama: "I direct your attention to Mrs. Obama's 1985 thesis at Princeton University. Its title (rather limited in scope, given the author and the campus) is 'Princeton-Educated Blacks and the Black Community.' To describe it as hard to read would be a mistake; the thesis cannot be 'read' at all, in the strict sense of the verb. This is because it wasn't written in any known language."

Well that's just funny. So snide. It's unfair to critique the undergraduate efforts of blooming intellectuals by the standard of actual mature adults. Well, I did try to read it. Gawd. What a slog. It's grueling. A Bataan Death March for the intellect. I perished early along the way, alas -- not so hardy as the indomitable sociology profs of that Golden Age of the Eighties. They just don't make s/he-men like that anymore.

Before I lapsed into the coma from which I only recently emerged -- they'd given me up for dead -- I do seem to recall one telling passage generated by the primitive word-processing program of young Ms. Robinson. And it goes a little something like this ... oh, wait. Wait. What? What's this!?! Great Scot! -- I can't cut and paste! Noooooo!

[an interval ensues, during which we hear inhuman screeches and the sound of breaking wood, sporadically interrupted by long periods of violent sobbing]

Ahem. Well. Yes. Ms. Robinson wrote the following, reproduced here perfectly in person by me manually for your edification.

"As a future Black alumnus, this study is particularly interesting because often times I take my own attitudes about such issues for granted;. never pausing to reflect upon how my experiences at Princeton may somehow have caused my attitudes to change. ...

"Earlier in my college career, there was no doubt in my mind that as a member of the Black community I was somehow obligated to this community and would utilize all of my present and future resources to benefit this community first and foremost. My experiences at Princeton have made me far more aware of my 'Blackness' than ever before. I have found that no matter how liberal and open-minded some of my White professors and classmates try to be toward me, I sometimes feel like a visitor on campus; as if I really don't belong. Regardless of the circumstances underwhich I interact with Whites at Princeton, it often seems as if, to them, I will always be Black first and a student second.

"These experiences have made it apparent to me that the path I have chosen to follow by attending Princeton will likely lead to my further integration and/or assimilation into a White cultural and social structure that will only allow me to remain on the periphery of society; never becoming a full participant. This realization has presently, made my goals to actively utilize my resources to benefit the Black community more desirable."

First, I get it. Alienation. The outsider. Easy. But as a conservative, I find something there that's also really very ugly. She's bought into the leftist class jargon, of course. She is after all a sociology major. And she's chosen to study her own most narrowly defined group -- that is, there's something in it so inordinately and transparently narcissistic. At least I craftily try to hide my self-obsession behind a mask of universal compassion. But young people may be excused for their narcissism and yet imperfect separation from The Group. They are young.

Mrs. Obama, however, is not young. And her Us/Them rhetoric is frankly disturbing. Bizarre even. What's ugly is that, clearly, her earlier adherence to what she was pleased to term the "Black community" has become encoded in generalities, but it is all the more intense for that. She is no longer seeking. She has found her answers, and they are racist. You didn't notice it, the verbal subterfuge. Whenever she uses the word "community", she means the word "race".

I believe her when she says it. This us/them talk. I believe the sincerity of that young woman who wrote that she would actively utilize her resources to benefit the Black community, "first and foremost". I believe that the adult she became believes the same thing, and that the resources that she strives for are those available to the Chief Executive of the United States. I believe that her convictions have hardened, and that she feels no loyalty at all to the United States, and all devotion to the Black community. I believe these things based on hearing long excerpts of her current speeches, brought into focus by the naive honesty of her early writing. The child is father to the man.

We have had racists in the White House before. We've had liberals there as well. We never have had yet a leftist bigot as these terms would currently be understood. What a nightmare. Hillary's fetish is benign by comparison. She's just a big government lefty feminist. There's something that just seems less toxic in being a racist against your own race, as the lefties are, as opposed to being a racist for your race. How primitive. How shameful.

Aren't we past that yet?

How could we put someone like that in the White House?

Remember back when blacks used to smile and say "sir" all the time? Why can't it be like that anymore?


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