When asked, "What gives Obama hope that America is ready for a black president?",
Obama took the opportunity to get at what he considers the heart of the matter, actually demanding that black journalists themselves are to blame for missing the point. Skin color, his record in public service, the issues – none of this suggests he’s not ‘black enough’ and yet questions over his blackness persist, he put to the crowd of black journalists.I appreciate that he's turned the question of "is Obama black enough?" back to the journalists, wondering why they are the ones persistent in making color an issue.
It’s “puzzling,” he said. Why is this?...
The rest of his remarks slightly err on the side of the race card, by appealing to the black man's self-inflicted status 'under the white man' still to this day.
“What it really does is really lay bare, I think, that we’re still locked in this notion that if you appeal to white folks then there must be something wrong,” he said, adding it’s the same sort of suspicion many blacks face when they attend a predominately white Ivy League institution.Here's where he loses me and could have knocked it out of the park.
And that’s when he issued this provocative challenge: Instead of asking Obama if he’s black enough, black journalists should dig deeper, and ask why there exists this mistrust in black America of a black man like Obama running for office?
Politics is not about appealing to white folks. If that's what you think, you're the wrong kind of politician. Perhaps the U.S. is predominantly white, but the diversity and makeup of our great nation is changing every day. It shouldn't be a question of why a black politician is mistrusted or can't appeal to voters, white, black, brown or whatever. The question should be why a man or woman- no matter their color or ethnicity- as a citizen and politician is either qualified for the position they seek, or not.