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Dear Mr. President,

I'm one of those Americans that lives in flyover country. I was treated to your much publicized 'teaching moment' last night and felt a response was warranted.

I'd like to say, with all respect, that this American resents the patronizing arrogance you exhibited as you deigned to 'teach America' about race. First off, I don't need lessons on race from you. I take my teachings from the Bible, not a man who sat through 20 years of 'hate whitey' sermons. I'd much prefer you bestow your teachable moments on, oh, say terrorists, or enemies of democracy.

Secondly, if you were genuinely interested in promoting racial healing, you might have used that teachable moment last night to address the third rail of race relations: namely, the reluctance of many blacks to look at whites without automatically assuming they are racists.

Last night, you had the perfect teachable moment, but, alas, you let it slip through your grasp. You had a wealthy, influential black man who continues to insist he is still oppressed. Then you had the white police officer who was merely doing his job in the correct manner. And then, we had you, Mr. President, a prime example of the problem. Said problem being the automatic assumption of racism without any facts to back it up.

You might have touched on the fact that many blacks of your generation have been taught that anything bad that happens in their life is a result of white oppression. You could have extrapolated or calibrated the fact that attitudes like that are extremely counterproductive and keep many blacks mired in the false comfort of victimization.

You might have addressed the fact that the only oppression happening these days is by your buddies Castro, Chavez and all the other third world dictators you seem to think are misunderstood men of good will.

Hey, you actually could have lectured your buddy Gates on the proper etiquette when dealing with law enforcement officers. Think of the great message that would have sent to young Americans. Respect for the law. That would have been a good thing to teach. But you let the opportunity pass with nary a word.

I'm sorry you didn't get a good soundbite or photo op out of this unrelenting media saga. I know you were envisioning a hearty three way handshake that could be flashed around the world, signifying absolutely nothing. But the evening wasn't a total waste. I actually did learn something.

I learned that you, and Henry Gates and other black men continue to believe that America is a racist country. I learned that you, Mr. President, will never solve any problems of race until you acknowledge your own racism against whites. I don't think that will happen in my lifetime but I will continue to 'hope' for 'change'.

And just out of curiosity, I was wondering what in the world you, the President of the greatest country in the world, is doing mediating the equivalent of a traffic ticket when our young men are dying in Afghanistan, our economy is in meltdown and Iran is on the brink of nuking Israel. Do you really think that was the best use of your time and political capital?

Tags: Obama, calibrate, racism

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We got the 6 year old this weekend and she wore me out. I'll read this article in the morning. I still believe Obama commited political suicide by not staying out of this, if not political suicide, he definately critically wounded his chances at a second term.

I hope we can keep this discussion civil.

Good night all.
I also ask myself why you even bother entering a forum such as this.
"Guilt" is defined as: a fact or state of having done something wrong.

Anyone who has ever enslaved is certainly wrong. I never have nor do I know anyone who has. I don't have to spend my life proving anything to anybody. I know what's in my heart and I will not waste my time or energy trying to prove it.
Here's a story of a personal experience of racism.

Years ago when I was an over the road driver pulling a flatbed. I ran into another driver from my company, a black man, we were loading out of the same place and going to the same place. He asked for my advice on how to secure the steel coils he was loading, I could see that he was new and nervous, I helped him secure and tarp his load after I finished mine. It was Friday and we were both taking our loads home for the weekend. We arranged to meet in Breezewood, Pa. and run together to NJ. We enjoyed each other's company and got with our dispatchers to coordinate loads going to the same places. We ran together all week. Toward the end of the week we were picking up insulation at a company where approximately 8 trucks could fit side by side in the warehouse. I pulled in first and my buddy next to me. I was loaded in about 15 minutes and pulled out to secure and tarp my load. I finished and still hadn't seen my buddy pull out yet. I walked back in and noticed the fork lift operator (white guy) was loading another truck. My buddy was sitting patiently in his truck. I went to the fork lift guy and told him that the other TMC truck came in right after me. He apologized and said "oh, I didn't know."

He got loaded and we tarped and secured his load together. I said to him, I believe you were discriminated against in there. He didn't say anything, he just smiled. It was obvious to me that it wasn't his first time being discriminated against.
Truck drivers know, you don't bitch or whine about waiting or the wait could be a lot longer.
One of the things that many of us don't appreciate as white privelege is that we can choose not to think or talk about racism if we want to. That's not a choice that others have.
I disagree. One wrong word and the PC police will demand we go to rehab
On the news they ran the 911 call, and the dispatcher did ask, only at that point did the caller identify race, she also mentioned she didn't know what was going on, they might actually live there - I've paraphased but that's the sense of it.
Actually, the audio is up for grabs. I've heard it. The caller said maybe one
was hispanic. She wasn't sure. She also indicated he maybe lived there. She wasn't worried.She never said black.

The official written report quoted her as saying "2 black men with backpacks" which she denies saying. All she claims saying is "I am the 911 caller," when the officer arrived.

Meanwhile, the PD "stands by its story" as written and entered into the archive. According to them it was "two black guys with two backpacks." She denies ever saying it.
Didn't she mention bags? I thought she did. If she did, then while she might have meant luggage the interpritation could have been open.

I don't fault either side on the issue - I assume the cops tend to expect that when they show up to your house to investigate a possible b&e in progress, and they find you as the owner, you'll be grateful they showed up to look after the place. It doesn't surprise me that a level of hostility would tend to tick them off just a bit. Does that justify the officer's response? I guess the answer to that is as ambiguous as the definition of what constitutes Disorderly Conduct.

As for the Professor, I don't blame him either. I'm sure having just returned from a trip and not even had time for a shower, his emotions were right at the surface. A case of whose dick is bigger? In part maybe, but I don't think we can discount the weight of history either. On this topic its rather weighty.
ZenDog, you've gained my admiration. "you'll be grateful they showed up to look after the place."

Since none of us knows exactly what took place at the professor's house, I think you've come as close to hitting the nail on the head as possible.

The first time I picked up my autistic grandson at his "school for the autistic" a young teacher's aide asked for my ID. After showing it to her she apologized. I laughed and said "You don't have to apologize for looking after and protecting my grandson."
Jacquin,
I like to think I am teachable. Do you have any facts that you wish to convey?
Nancy
You do know or should I say remember that the President is biracial? So I guess he enjoyed hearing all those sermons about himself, his mother, his sister, his "white grandparents" who raised him?
You ASSume Too much. And you certainly sound like you have some anger issues. I have 2 biracial grandkids by my middle daughter. My grandson's father is black. My grandaughter's father is hispanic. They are learning to claim all of who they are...just as the President did.
He knows of both worlds. So to call him a racist, ummm, that means he hates half of who he is...not to mention he'd have to hate part of who his children are...get a clue.

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