Sunday, November 09, 2008

Ty's Corner

Only in America . . .

could establishment Whites be so scared of Black people they have to call a bi-racial man the "First Black President."

I'm not breaking any ground by noting that reality. It was the biggest topic in the e-mails last week. "Only Once (Ty, Betty, Cedric and Marcia)" resulted in many, many e-mails and the most basic question from Black and African-American readers was, "Why are we wasting our first on a bi-racial?" Exactly.

Barack's got his own first to claim. He is bi-racial. Give him that first: "The first bi-racial president." But he's got no right to claim to be the first Black president. He's not Black. It's not a minor point and as a reader who took part in the Selma March noted, "It's his job to correct the press when they get it wrong."

The establishment is comfortable with a "Black" leader provided the "Black" person is actually half White. That's not progress and it is insulting to those of us who are Black. But as another reader pointed out, "As soon as he gets into his first scandal, the Black community will be rushing forward to scream, 'He's mixed! He's not Black!'" Yes, that is correct.

That is how it works.

And it's also true that when a Black man or woman seems on the verge of winning the White House, Barack will be discarded then as well. In fact, you saw how that will play out this year. Bill Clinton was dubbed the "first Black president" by Toni Morrison. But in 2008, when Barack could win it, a number of people rushed forward to strip Bill of his title (including 'fashion plate' -- ha ha -- Toni Morrison). The same rush will take place when a real Black person seems to have a genuine shot at the White House.

Until then, the half-White, White raised Barry Obama will be allowed to stand in as Black because the establishment wants it and the Black community isn't ready yet to stand up. Someday soon, as Judy Collins sings, someday soon.
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