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Archive for the ‘Racism’ Category

Are Democrats Racist?

In 2012 Elections, Racism on May 18, 2012 at 2:10 am

Are Democrats racist?

What about Democrats who will not vote for President Obama in their 2012 Democratic Presidential Primary?

We’ve all heard Republicans are “against” Obama because of racism. [1]  Nothing to do about the economy, government regulation or spending, nor the federal deficit.  The presumption is if Obama resigned today, the Republican Party (and whites in general) would pop open the champagne and vote for everything Joe Biden proposed because, well, hey he’s a white dude.  A very “white” dude.

[For the record, I hope President Obama stays healthy through the end of his term because he’s certainly far more intelligent than the buffoonish Biden.]

State seal of North Carolina

If Republicans voting Republican and opposing a Democratic President is racist (as opposed to what Republicans do), then what of Democrats who won’t support a Democratic President? 

Are they racist, too?  Or are there valid reasons to voice disapproval of President Obama?

In 2012, Obama lost the Democratic Primary in 15 Oklahoma counties. [2]

The President is running surprisingly tight against an unknown in Arkansas. [3]

Obama came close to losing the West Virginia Democratic Primary.  His Democratic opponent was serving time in a Texas jail but still managed 41% of the vote. [4]

In North Carolina, Obama had no opposition but “no preference” still took 21% (199,104 votes) in the Democratic Presidential primary. [5]

Real racism is disgusting (and foolish), which is why it should be taken as a serious charge.  It should not be bandied around carelessly.  As a result, I am unwilling to just assume every North Carolina or Oklahoma Democrat who opposed Obama was doing so out of racism.

Might Obama policies on energy have something to do with it?  Oklahoma is a huge state for oil.  The Keystone pipeline the Obama Administration has frozen would have run through Oklahoma.  West Virginians may oppose Obama policies against coal as well as hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas (so-called “fracking”).  More recently, might some Democrats in culturally conservative Arkansas oppose gay marriage?  What about the economy?  In Arkansas, might some even still be sore about Obama’s 2008 defeat of former Arkansas First Lady Hillary Clinton? 

Could some of those Democratic primary voters who won’t support Obama have a genuine gripe about foreclosures, unemployment or government deficits?  Might some of them be genuinely opposed to “ObamaCare” and other Obama era expansions of government power?  Or are they all racists?  If you think they’re racists, how do you know?  Do you know if they are white voters? 

What do you think?  If you’re a Democrat who opposed Obama in a 2012 state primary, I’d love to hear why; is it the color of his skin or do you have real gripes? 

 

 

[1] https://econscius.wordpress.com/2011/08/30/what-obamas-gallup-rating-shows-about-racism/

[2] http://news.yahoo.com/obama-loses-dem-primary-15-oklahoma-counties-050431645.html

[3] http://talkbusiness.net/2012/05/obama-in-for-a-battle-in-the-fourth-romney-on-cruise-control/

[4] http://articles.latimes.com/2012/may/09/news/la-pn-texas-inmate-wins-41-of-the-vote-against-obama-in-wv-primary-20120509

[5] http://www.wral.com/news/political/page/11007490/?group=president

Pictures from Wikipedia Commons.

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Good News: America Less Segregated Than Ever… Especially in Texas

In Racial Segregation, Racism, Texas on January 31, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Good news to share!  Racial segregation is at its lowest level ever.  The Wall Street Journal highlights the Manhattan Institute report:

“U.S. cities are more integrated now than at any time since 1910, based on analysis of census data from neighborhoods.  Fifty years ago, nearly half the black population lived in a ghetto, the study said, while today that proportion has shrunk to 20%. All-white neighborhoods in U.S. cities are effectively extinct, according to the report.”

Interestingly, the two large cities with the lowest level of racial segregation are in Texas: Dallas and Houston.  Atlanta is third least segregated, followed by Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.  The five most segregated are New York, St Louis, Cleveland, Chicago and, worst of all, Detroit.  Though we often hear how supposedly racist Sunbelt cities are compared to the North, the facts suggest just the opposite.

The full story is found at:  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203920204577193261646566778.html

Pictures (Devon Street, Chicago & a Chicago jazz club) from Wikipedia Commons.

Obama Administration Cannot Perform Simple Math

In Obama Administration, Racism, Regulation on January 12, 2012 at 1:16 am

 

We often hear how smart President Obama supposedly is.  If so, he really should teach elementary math to his own Department of Justice.

Holman Jenkins of The Wall Street Journal reports the Administration has sued a mortgage lender for discrimination on account of 210,000 minority borrowers paying above average higher fees or rates amongst a population of 525,000 minority borrowers. [1] 

The math is 210,000/525,000 = 40%.  That is less than half of the borrowers being given supposedly below average terms!

Lest we think that is just a one-off mistake, the same article points out the Justice Department also filed claims against two Los Angeles car dealers, saying 600 of 1,300 non-Asian buyers were charged more than the average Asian buyer.  Yes, they were accusing the car dealers of discriminating in favor of a minority group (Asians) though the math means only 46% of non-Asian car buyers were given the supposedly worse terms.

Anyone with exposure to elementary statistics knows results fall on what is called a “probability distribution”.  You will never take a sample of 4.4 million mortgage customers and get an exactly equal distribution of loan terms amongst all applicants.  You will never have the exact same distribution of credit scores amongst all applicants of different races.  This is incredibly obvious, at least to me.

While this sounds like silliness, we need to keep in mind every frivolous government lawsuit costs money, time  and aggravation for the companies that were sued.  It must be an ideological hatred of business that drives the Administration to attack businesses like it does.  Or, perhaps, they flunked math.

[1] http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204124204577152684034890266.html?KEYWORDS=racism+everywhere

 

What Obama’s Gallup Rating Shows About Racism

In Gallup Polls, Obama Administration, Political Rhetoric, Racism on August 30, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Gallup Portrait.jpg

Many Democrats attribute the continuing gradual slide in the President’s approval ratings to racism. [1] [2] [3]

Several points counter the claim: 

(1) In Gallup’s first poll of Obama’s Presidency, Obama had 69% overall approval with 43% approval from Republicans. Republican disapproval of Obama started at just 30%.

For comparison, 41% of Republicans disapproved of the job Clinton was doing in early 1993 and, “in early February 2001, 46% of Democrats disapproved of the job George W. Bush was doing as president.” [4]  Barely half the people of the opposition party tend to grant a “honeymoon” to a president of the other party.  It is the natural order of politics in the USA for any President, of any party, to be disapproved by partisans of the other party.

Consider the implications of that first Gallup poll: President Obama started with 70% approval/no opinion amongst Republicans!

The white Bill Clinton started with a much higher DISAPPROVAL rating amongst Republicans than Barrack Obama did.  GOP approval of Mr. Obama is very low now (11% on 8/27/11 [5]), yet that reflects perceptions of Obama’s performance and policies subsequent to the start of his presidency. 

To those of you who believe it is “racism” that caused President Obama’s subsequent drop in the polls, I ask if you posit racist Republicans would register Obama approval in a poll back in 2009?  Presumably not. Do you think racist Republicans would register a neutral opinion of a black President in a poll back in 2009? Presumably not.  It does not follow, either, that the 30% of Republicans who started off disapproving Mr. Obama were “racist” since a higher proportion actually opposed the white Mr. Clinton right off the bat and more Democrats started off with disapproval of President George W. Bush. 

Some have argued code words are being used to “remind” white voters President Obama is black [2] but that claim makes little sense.  Surely every voter was aware of Mr. Obama’s race in 2008.  The Rev. Jeremiah Wright episode also brought the issue of racial identity to the fore back in 2008.  There was massive press attention to the fact Mr. Obama would be the first black American President.  I find it highly unlikely there are many white voters who were comfortable voting for a black Mr. Obama in 2008 who would now have changed their view in a racist direction on account of “coded language”.  A much more plausible explanation is the public has grown weary of the unemployment rate and continuing housing slump and holds the President at least partly responsible.

(2) Yahoo! News Contributor Michael Thompson recently wrote, “Amid all the euphoria that came forth with Obama’s election and inauguration, the reality remained that he had claimed only 43 percent of the white vote, with shares down in the teens in some Southern states.”

Mr. Thompson’s point actually argues against white racism in the 2008 election.  Mr. Obama’s 43% of the white vote was slightly greater than either John Kerry (41%) or Al Gore (42%).  In fact, no Democratic Presidential nominee has won the white vote since Lyndon Johnson in 1964. [6]  For reasons economic and cultural (e.g. foreign policy, guns, religion), whites have voted Republican for President over white Democrats for decades.

(3) This is not to say there are no racists out there nor that some people are not impacted, at least in some way, psychological issues about race.  Clearly (and fortunately!), very few people now run around in bed sheets burning crosses.  Surely, there are at least a handful of old-fashioned, unreformed racial bigots who voted in 2008 and it is safe to assume they did not vote for the black man.  But, that does not make McCain or the Republican Party in any way “racist”.  If the GOP were to nominate Presidential contender Herman Cain in 2012, surely the Klansmen will find not vote for the black Mr. Cain, either.

I would caution Democrats from jumping to conclusions about why people do not support Mr. Obama.  The Gallup data show more whites supported Mr. Obama in 2008 than had supported Messrs. Kerry and Gore.  More Republicans gave Mr. Obama approval in early Gallup polls than did for Mr. Clinton.  Very few people are today overtly racist.  We do not know why other people vote the way they do.  True racism is downright appalling.  You will notice I rarely write of race because I like to think of people as individuals not as members of ethnic and racial groups. 

This is a nation of 310 million people and you can always find a few who hold crazy ideas (not only racism, by the way, but belief in Roswell aliens, JFK conspiracies and so forth).  You will find some offensive signs at rallies.  But that does not mean a significant portion of the people who register disapproval of President Obama are motivated by racism.  Racism is a very serious charge and not something that should be carelessly bandied about.  You cannot plausibly argue that, say, a distaste for Cash For Clunkers is “racist”. 

Obama meets with Bush in the Oval Office. Both sit at a distance in front of the presidential desk with their legs crossed and their backs on an angle toward the camera. They sit at right angles to each other.

[1] http://news.yahoo.com/racism-factor-obamas-low-rating-211500256.html 

[2] http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/joan_walsh/politics/2009/09/14/obama  Joan Walsh writes: “They’ve blackened Obama, in both senses of the word — simultaneously diminishing his support and emphasizing his ethnicity. Simply by raising consciousness about the president’s race and associating him with radical identity politics, they’ve diminishing his standing among a large swath of the public.”

[3] http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/nov/16/obama-racism-conservatives-opposition  Mr. Tomasky does say, “First, it’s said, the anger felt towards Obama – among the “tea party” contingent, for instance – is in the main ideological. Let me be clear: I agree with this. It is in the main ideological,” before he states there is some latent form of racism as well.

[4] http://www.gallup.com/poll/113968/Obama-Initial-Approval-Ratings-Historical-Context.aspx

[5] http://www.gallup.com/poll/149225/Obama-Weekly-Average-Approval-Holds-Term-Low.aspx

[6]  http://www.slate.com/id/2204251/sidebar/2204308/

Pictures from Wikipedia Commons.