Race, identity, and the national interest

The Libyan absurdity (see previous entry) continues to demonstrate what happens when you put leftists, anti-Americans, nonwhites, and women in charge of U.S. foreign policy.

Regarding the “nonwhite” aspect mentioned above, I’m thinking specifically about what Obama said in Dreams From My Father, that when he traveled to Europe for the first time, he, as a nonwhite, felt uneasy and uncomfortable in his identity as a Westerner and therefore did not feel a connection with European culture. Yet during the 2008 presidential campaign, no reporter asked him, as he should have been asked: “Senator, you wrote in your memoir in 1995 that you were unsure and ambivalent regarding your identity as a member of Western civilization. Is that still the case? If yes, how will your at least partial alienation from the West play out in your policies as president? And if no, what has changed in your thinking since you said that?”

The point is that Obama, as a self-consciously “Third World” person, does not feel an instinctive loyalty or affection toward America and the West. And therefore he does not seek to protect them from their enemies, such as Islam. To the contrary, he identifies with Islam. This is why he launched an insane war at the behest of the Arab League, a war from which America can gain nothing but can lose a great deal.

I discussed the same problem of race and identification in February 2008, in an entry entitled “Obama’s Communist mentor, Obama’s anti-American wife”:

Michelle Obama has said:

“I don’t think there is a person of color in this country that doesn’t struggle with what it means to be a part of your race versus what the majority thinks is right.”

Meaning, she feels herself distinctively different from the majority of the country and is never comfortable as part of America.

All of which goes to show how white Americans live in a fantasy. They look forward with frothy excitement to putting a nonwhite in the White House, based on their belief that blacks are really just “like us,” and therefore that having a black president will mean the decisive end of racial divisions in America. But a black presidency will not end those racial divisions, for the simple reason that blacks are not like us. The reality—expressed above by Frank Davis and Michelle Obama—is that many blacks do not feel themselves a part of this country. They cannot relate comfortably and wholeheartedly to this country, they cannot identify with its history, they cannot be proud of its achievements (let alone “really” proud), because that history and those achievements are overwhelmingly and characteristically those of white people, whom the blacks see not only as unbridgeably different from themselves racially, but as their historic and current oppressors. For blacks to identify fully with America would be to identify with their racial and cultural Other, and that is psychologically impossible.

Whatever Obama’s personal racial attitudes may be, to install him, his wife, and his associates of color at the top of our national life is to install the black hostility/ambivalence toward America at the top of our national life.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at April 15, 2011 06:07 PM | Send

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