No, President Obama, Race Relations Aren’t Better Since You Were Elected

obama-concernedRecently, President Obama made comments where he stated his belief that America is less racially divided now than before he was elected in 2008. Sadly, that’s a statement with which I completely disagree.

During an interview with NPR, Obama said, “I actually think that it’s probably — in its day-to-day interactions — less racially divided.”

I’m just not sure where he’s coming from with that. Though let me make myself perfectly clear, he’s not the reason why race relations haven’t improved. Outside of maybe a questionable decision to view Al Sharpton as some kind of advisor (someone whose presence often instantly divides people) I’ve not really seen anything that the president has done to make race relations worse.

Conservatives are the ones who’ve made race relations worse. From the moment it was clear that Barack Obama was going to win the Democratic nomination in 2008, the GOP set off a campaign to degrade and slander him in any way possible. And several of those attacks were racially based. To my recollection, I don’t ever remember a white president being asked to present two forms of his birth certificate.

And I’ve lost track at how many times his race has been brought up by members of the conservative media or conservatives in general.

There’s this; and this; and this; and this; and this…you know, I could honestly go on and on just listing the articles I’ve written where Obama’s race was brought up by conservatives.

Though I’m not going to let liberals off the hook on this either. Since Obama’s election I have seen the liberal media, especially the internet liberal media, almost go out of its way to make anything and everything about racism – even if the situation had nothing to do with it. I’ve seen far too many stories deemed “racial” simply because one individual was black and the other was white. As if we can’t have an incident in this country between people of differing races without racism obviously being the reason why. And every white person’s opinion on a racial matter is not derived from “white privilege.” This is a term that liberals have fallen in love with, but it’s not only ignorant because it’s essentially another form of racism (which is hypocritical) but it’s condescending to people you don’t know to dismiss their opinion on an issue based solely on the color of their skin.

I’m not sure how you improve race relations by telling an entire race “your opinion doesn’t really matter because you suffer from white privilege” – without knowing a thing about that person.

But what President Obama’s election did was make racism much easier to get away with because conservatives disguised it under the pretense of “I just don’t like his policies.” They could justify their vile and irrational hatred toward him through politics, when it’s clear a lot of this disdain they feel about him, for many, is based on the fact that he’s half black.

And while race relations are better now than they were decades ago, as evident by our nation electing its first African-American president, his election has also shown us how much further we still have to go.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


Facebook comments

  • Rob Banks

    Let’s start with one simple step. Let’s see if white conservatives can stop calling African Americans “nigger” for one day. Can white conservatives stop that for just one day?
    Then maybe we can bring the other people around this issue into it? Until then, this conflating the President with race relations is after the fact.

    • Jim Bean

      How many times per day do you hear white conservatives say that?

      • Allen Clifton

        Here in Texas, fairly often. Especially when it’s in a private setting.

      • Thebob

        I could say the same thing about being called whitey or white boy or cracker or honky or redneck…as all words they are just words or labels you leftist like to use so much. It’s an offensive word sure but still just a word. Regardless I am proud to be an American.

      • Cemetery Girl

        Use is alive and well. I don’t ask the people I hear say it if they are conservative or what they are, but it’s heard. I hated it when I worked retail and customers would say it because your acceptable reactions are limited. If someone I know says it I have been known to react severely. It is a word that irks me.

    • americanmale

      I’m a white conservative and have never called someone a nigger.

      • Creeayshun Sighuntist

        Have any of your friends or family used the term in casual conversation with you when they thought nobody was listening? Growing up in a small town, I heard it fairly often from people who assumed I was “like them” because I am white. Needless to say, those people all vote GOP.

      • Thebob

        Do any of you know your history….The big D party is the party that was against Lincoln freeing slaves, big D party was against Blacks rights movement in the 60’s and against blacks voting rights and against women voting rights….You all need to take American History again. Margret Sanger, Libtard goddess for Planned Parenthood, was an out spoken racist, but used her position to try Eugenics on blacks. Hence why the abortion percentage rates is astronomically used by young black women who only comprise a small % of the population…Lets not forget the first Drug Czar, out spoken racist started the DEA, created all the drug laws we have today, why, to throw black people in prison to fund their private prisons….Oh, he was a big D also and under a big D president who was also an outspoken racist….

      • regressive white trash reli

        drug war started by Nixon,,,,,,,,,,,,,and democrats slid into being REPUBLICANS in the “southern strategy” of the 1960’s—do some homework b4 U cry.
        SANGER was pro CONTRACEPTIONS; not pro abortion,,,,,,,,,after she died her followers did more of the abortion stuff——–do some homework b4U cry
        abortion”? its up to the individual; not some white trash regressive aging MALE legislator religious scumbag who “thinks” some dried out long dead jewish gay carpenter is “god”

      • Thebob

        She was PRO making black people infertile…She was a HUGE racist and wanted to wipe black people out of the US…Do YOUR homework. I have read lots about your Goddess Sanger…She hated black people, she also wanted to regulate who could have children and who couldn’t…Basically an IQ test to be a parent…Hell that might be a good thing these days cause I know for sure, most of you libtards wouldn’t pass…Get a new argument, cause your opinion of Jesus is getting old…Murder is Murder, no matter how you look at it…Especially killing of children including unborn…Lets keep it up America…Every country throughout history that began “Cleansing” their children or unborn were utterly destroyed…Bring it on I am not afraid to be judged in the end…God has protected out country for the most part, that protection is now gone. America will collapse, probably in my life time…We will get everything we asked for in the end….
        If it is up to the individual then those individuals are fucked up in head…Killing your unborn child should never be an option ever…..Even if giving birth will kill the mom, the child has a right to life. As I said, Sex is also a choice of the individuals involved, if you can’t be adult enough to suffer the consequences of having sex then you shouldn’t be having sex end of story. I got a women pregnant when I was 20, now have a beautiful daughter, did I want a kid at that time, hell no, did my life get changed, yep upside down, I lost my car, could barely afford to buy food and clothes, but you know what, it was never a SELFISH thought or option of abortion, not once did it ever come to mind, even though we weren’t ready…And please don’t bring up rape abortions, they are very very minuscule in the % of abortions….But then again I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason, whatever that reason maybe…Getting an abortion is a STRICTLY SELFISH ACT nothing else to it….and it isn’t an individuals choice it is and should be those “Parents” choice in most cases….I also feel if the “Mom” doesn’t tell the father and she knows who he is, he disagrees with it, then it shouldn’t happen and if it does then that is murder, regardless it is murder anyway…It’s not just the women’s body at that point, it another life another human…..I bet you would be for “Letting go” of our elderly say when you hit 70 if get an injection and poof you are no more….how about that?

      • regressive white trash reli

        funny how when YOU hate someone in the past,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,she is now MY HERO???
        awwww,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, I guess U “think” FDR is a racist also?
        and the quip about the elderly…………..
        quite regressive of you considering that the GOP lesgilations TRY to remove SNAP and it feeds kids 13 and under and seniors over 65 at a 75% rate…..
        awwww,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, “moochers” preying on the system?
        Im in se florida,,,,, 352 yrds from beach in pompano,,,I attend LA fitness for basketball and weights daily
        come visit me and do what your disgusting wifes husband claimed he will do to me,,,,,,,,,,,,,
        come on lard ass,,,,,,,,,

      • Thebob

        By your own BF % of 11% you are a lard ass compared to my self 6-8% I am physically fit, and military trained with weapons and hand to hand combat….You are just scum…But thanks for the info you just made my job way easier…Thanks to my in-laws moving to Florida… You might get to see me, well not really see me….cause you won’t see me coming.

      • Thebob

        So lets see you live on A1A or one of the side streets… Or I bet north riverside…that’s closer to 352 yards….

      • regressive white trash reli

        riverside south,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, im slightly north.
        wanna find me? Im heading to play Bball at ne 38 st in FT.L and will be there at 630 or so,,,,,,will be there til 10 when they claoe,,,,,,,,,U cant miss me,,and my slim chesty girl will be at my side,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,wanna come beat my ass there? or— bravely shoot me with your .40 “s & w”?
        cmon down tough guy,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, bring me a yoohoo to drink

      • Thebob

        Yes, FDR was racist, so was Woodrow Wilson, So was LBJ….Throwing 120,000 Americans there were of Japanese decent, was racist no matter how you look at it…Not inviting 4 time Gold metal winner Jesse Owens to the WH for a meet when all the white Olympians were invited is racist. Hell even Hitler shook Owens hand at the 1936 Olympics…Yes, the Democrat’s so revered president FDR was a racist no matter how you look at it….Oh, and you can thank the Dem. party and FDR for presidential term limits…His body wasn’t even in the ground yet and they passed that amendment….”The question as to why black people have in recent years chosen to celebrate and support the party that put their ancestors in the chains of slavery, fought a vicious Civil War to keep them in those chains, invented the Ku Klux Klan as the terrorist arm of the Democrat Party to keep blacks who had been freed by Republicans in subjugation,resegregated blacks under the tyranny of “the father of the modern progressive movement” also known as the racist white supremacist Woodrow Wilson, was still so racist in 1924 that the Democratic National Convention of that year was called “Klanbake,” allowed black men to go untreated with syphilis so researchers could study the progression of the disease (the Tuskegee Experiment) throughout the entire FDR presidency, was largely THE party of racist discrimination through the 1950s, and then only passed the Civil Rights laws with the overwhelming supporting votes of Republicans, is a mystery that I will not attempt to explain. I have no idea why black people as a culture allowed Democrats who had subjected them to one form of plantation allowed Democrats to bait and switch them into a different form of plantation (the welfare plantation of institutional generational dependency).” Yep FDR and Most Dems these days are racist….bigots…..and just generally hate people….

      • regressive white trash reli

        Jethro tull wrote a song 4 U–
        ” living in the past”

      • regressive white trash reli

        probably grew up in montana or U are simply a liar

    • Pipercat

      Actually, I would posit this: Try living in a county, city or neighborhood where one is in the minority. Look at how those around you behave and treat you; then make a comparison.

    • FD Brian

      They also use thug to describe black people as a replacement for the term “nigger”. And I hear it a lot to Jim Beam and I live much farther north than Texas.

      • Thebob

        A ‘thug’ is anyone of any color, but most happen to be black, because that is where most of the crime comes from…Look up your cities stats if you don’t believe me. Being from Illinois it is everyday every weekend we hear reports from Chicago about another thug killing another thug or a thug’s stray bullet killing a 10 year old little girl who just happened by….Sorry, but you can’t change the truth. Thugs are thugs regardless of color. I could also say the same for the N word….Regardless of color….meaning you are just a POS person….

  • Jim Bean

    There are at least two things I can think of that he did to make race relations worse:

    (1) He summarily charged that the officers who arrested Henry Louis Gates Jr. ‘acted stupidly.’

    (2) He did nothing to deter those blacks and white liberals who call anyone who dares criticize his policies ‘racists.’

    • Andy Kinnard

      Reachin’ all the way to the back of the bread box to find two crumbs, Jim STILL declares victory.

    • Denis Kaufman

      First, the officers who arrested Gates did act stupidly. Had they checked who owned the house and approached him using standard police procedure for that situation(low key, calm, “helpful”) until they ascertained what was happening, it would have gone quite differently. Second, the whole “just cause I disagree doesn’t make me a racist” line was preemptively deployed by the wing-nuts as one of Frank Lutz’s talking points and amplified by the spiritual mentor of two generations of GOP hatchet-men, Roger Ailes, who learned at the feet of Murray Chotiner the fine arts of character assassination.

      • Jim Bean

        Police officers responding to a 911 call of men breaking and entering a residence should respond in a “low key, calm, “helpful” manner?”

        You guys certainly have a knack for remodeling reality in order reach an emotional objective.

      • Denis Kaufman

        … and you ignore the conditional phrase “until they ascertain the nature of the situation.” 911 callers are often wrong in what they observe so police officers need to approach in a manner that doesn’t aggravate the situation; such as someone trying to get into his own house. So, yes: calm, low-key, “helpful” (quotes are there to a reason) and maintain a tactics distance that allows you to control all foreseeable outcomes. Gates made no attempt to leave the scene when the police arrived. That should have been a tipper right there. He may have acted like an asshole and been condescending, but citizens get to do that. Its not a crime. BTW, we traincsoldiers and Marines to act the same way at checkpoints in places where they are statistically more likely to be targets that in Cambridge Mass.

      • Thebob

        Yet, all they do these days is elevate the situation and usually someone ends up dead or hurt and possibly innocent of any crime….

      • Thebob

        Um, I wasn’t trained that way….Military situations are completely different and a completely different set of standards…Unlike our “Peace Officers”. We or at-least my training we approached every situation as a possible hostile situation. Every vehicle was checked no matter if I recognized the driver or not. Same went for every person.

      • Thebob

        Quote Obama himself “what I think we know separate and apart from this incident is that there’s a long history in this country of African Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately” Disproportionately Black Americans and Latino Americans have higher crime stats than any other demographic, largely the Black Americans out number all other groups. But that Cambridge office was an idiot, especially after he had already proved he was the home owner. Officer should have just left, regardless of his behavior, he didn’t harm the officer except maybe his ego….

  • Creeayshun Sighuntist

    Speaking as a big Obama supporter, I believe he has done and continues to do an amazing job given the hand he’s been dealt. Although just about anyone was better than the Dumbya Bush disaster or anything the GOP had to offer in ’08 and ’12. That said, his achievements speak for themselves even though the GOP doesn’t like to speak of them.

    Personally, I don’t think it’s his responsibilty to improve race relations in the country by catering to the whims and demands of the racist GOP. “F” them. They will never be happy. I do think he just brought about the beginning of a conversation that had to start at some point in our history and brought back out into the open what has always festered in the bottom feeders of the GOP. Obama’s election forced the GOP base to fracture and call themselves the “tea party” just so they could surround themselves exclusively with other small town white people because the GOP was trying to reach out to other groups via Michael Steele. Sure, the tea partiers will be able to point to one person who is black that was paid to go to a rally, or that they once knew a white guy who had a black person over to dinner, but the reality is that they catered exclusively to the small town, old, white, racist base of the GOP.

    I also think it is going to be a very long time before another black person is elected as President because of the overt and closet racism of the GOP and the lessons they’ve learned during this past 6 years on what they can get away with saying out loud or just “implying” over and over on Faux News to drive wedges into our politics that make small town white people uncomfortable.

    My question is, what has anyone in the GOP or conservative media done to help race relations? And what are our societal expectations of them?

    • Thebob

      I have met many black tea party members…Sorry that makes you a racist in your own right….Which I am not a member nor do I see myself as a Tea Party…I am a Constitutionalist and will vote for anyone that I believe will have the Constitutions best interest in mind.

  • I don’t know if race relations are any better but they aren’t any worse than they were. The issues are out in the open again, but they never went away.

    White people thinking that they did is sort of a big part of the problem.

  • Tillmann Puschka

    Nothing’s changed w.r.t. racism- it has always been there and purturbed
    America’s progress ever since the inception of the country; the
    difference with Obama at the helm is simply that it has become very
    overt and obvious ever since he and his family have been in the white
    house- you see it out in the open, but it has always been there, under
    the surface.

    America is going to have to hit rock bottom before
    the race problem can even be addressed, because no one wants to talk
    about it- at least not at this point in time. The day will come when
    rich and poor alike are suffering from the effects of the country’s
    racist structure, and that is the day people will finally be willing to
    discuss the issue and work together to do away with racism. Don’t hold
    your breath, though- Americans are very forgetful and not exactly the
    brightest beings on this planet- so it will take a while before these
    problems are realized and then resolved.

    • Thebob

      I think the first step is protecting the Black Family….The culture in a lot of inner cities has been driven that way by force of the Government….It’s all a plan. If you all can’t see that then you all are blind. Sheeple following the heard. 13% of the population are black yet blacks fill most of our prison population….Most crime is from the black communities, there are more way more black on black murders in our country than any other demographic what’s that say???

  • Frank DiCuffolk

    ABC: Always Be Community-organizing.

    • regressive white trash reli

      ^^^^ crybaby^^^ regressive ^^^with no^^facts^^^
      1st of year; my tax burden ( officially) will be 28,800 after deductions
      cry back soon ; dumbass board puzzle conquerer. don’t forget going to “MASS”– that’s productive

  • Denis Kaufman

    I have begun to think of the current toxicity as part of a war within conservatism.Both Clinton and Obama have generated carpet-chewing rage in the GOP outraged because they are governing as moderate Republicans and making a success of it for the most part. The GOP right wing and the religious right (now largely inseparable) went to great pains to purge their party of such ideas and now they are dealing with them from Democrats. Actually Obama has taken some positions Ronald Reagan would be comfortable with. So the GOP has a problem going after him on the record (as was the case with Clinton) so they rely on manufactured outrage courtesy of Roger Ailes and Rupert Murdoch. Race plays a part in this because for many Fox viewers (particularly) the President’s race makes even the most ludicrous crap believable. Fox also counts on the ignorance of their audience; I really believe that most played little attention to past presidents’ golfing or vacations and are outraged by this President’s leisure because Megan Kelly or Brian Kilmeade tell the they should be outraged.

  • Thebob

    Welp considering a majority of Blacks are not African American then sure why not….They being blacks, are Americans that are just black. Now if they immigrated from Africa say Ethiopia, then they would be an African American, or Ethiopian American but still an American either way….I believe the left is the side who likes labels so much….First and foremost I just like many other black, white, yellow and brown are American’s first…..Not sure about you guys though….Most “African Americans” would not be accepted in Africa just like a white or yellow or brown American simply because they are AMERICANS…..This is one of the biggest problems in our country stupid labels….If you think you are African American first then that is your problem. Same goes for Mexican Americans….Unless you were born in Mexico, you aren’t Mexican American, you are American, with Mexican history….Just idiotic thinking and logic.

    • regressive white trash reli

      see: “thinking” some dead dried out gay jewish carpenter is “god”