The god that failed

Sage McLaughlin writes:

For the last week or so I’ve been pondering exactly the point made by Limbaugh and at your site. More specifically, I’ve been thinking to myself that if this keeps up, then the American people are probably not going to elect another black president for a long, long time. Having gotten a taste of the hush-tactics of the left—those predictable, cheap denunciations of Obama’s critics as racists, merits be damned—I wonder whether people are going to want to elect yet another president who simply can’t be opposed, no matter how radical his agenda happens to be. I have no way of knowing for certain, but my gut tells me that all this race-baiting is going to hurt Obama way, way more than it helps him, and that if he doesn’t take some proactive steps to distance himself from those charges that he will suffer for it in 2012.

Here’s the thing: Obama was elected on the promise that he would be a “post-racial” president. Set aside the sheer stupidity of this line of thought (that by electing a man on the basis of his race and then having an orgiastic three-month celebration of that fact that we could somehow … er … get beyond race). The point is that many, many people voted for Obama because they had an impermeable faith in the healing effect this would have on race relations in America. Why, he was so post-racial and post-partisan that, in the words of Newsweek’s Evan Thomas, he’s “above the country, above—above the world, he’s sort of God.” One thing his supporters pointed to was his speech during the Jeremiah Wright controversy, in which he offered that “to wish away the resentments of white Americans, to label them as misguided or even racist, without recognizing they are grounded in legitimate concerns—this too widens the racial divide, and blocks the path to understanding.”

The big problem with that, of course, is that this was a campaign speech and the purpose of it was to get the man elected. People constantly elide this point. He was willing to say just about anything to make the Wright controversy go away, and he only offered that fig leaf after accusing conservative commentators of “building their careers” by shutting down legitimate discussion of race. And more to the point: he hasn’t had one word to say about the people currently labeling his critics racist. If Obama was really “a sort of God” standing above the racial tumult in this country trying with all his golden-hearted might to get Americans beyond the resentments of the past, one would expect he’d have something more to say about these incessant, incendiary accusations. If he’s a “god,” then he must be a clockmaker-style god who simply sets events in motion then loftily ignores them. And of course the biggest reason that no one is a fervent deist is precisely because such a god is really rather unpraiseworthy, and certainly not a figure to whom we can attach anything like love or loyalty.

My bottom line is that Obama’s silence—just like his silence during 20 years of the most abominable racial vitriol spewing from his “spiritual mentor” Wright—says more about the man than any half-hearted, minor concession of expedience. And if Americans find that ordinary democratic politics is impossible while a non-white occupies the White House, then my guess is that many of them will conclude, in the quiet of their own hearts, that the experiment just hasn’t worked and probably won’t so long as the American left remains in thrall to that intellectual sickness we call “political correctness.” Indeed, I’d be willing to make a bet that after all this liberal hectoring of the American people—which includes the president, who simply can’t seem to stop shouting into the microphone at us—we won’t be too eager to line up at the polls for four more years of it.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 17, 2009 11:17 AM | Send

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