An error of description

Can I please point out that Barack Obama is not African-American / Black. He’s mixed race. His father was a Kenyan chieftain who are regarded as princes. And his father pissed off at an early age, so he was raised by conventional white family.
There is this myth being propogated that Obama will be the first black president. NO. HE IS MIXED RACE. There’s a big difference and ignoring this is a crude attempt to manipulate the voters.


4 Responses to An error of description

  1. red says:

    that doesnt mean anything though, its not like he only suffers half the racism is it? granted he came from a privilidged background but i bet hes suffered a lot of stick cos being black.

  2. wien1938 says:

    Red, I must differ. There is no indication of his having suffered racism anywhere in his life. While he did suffer an identity crisis in his teens, who doesn’t? I sympathise with him there, but the point was made in the blog entry; to call him a black man with all the connotations of slave ancestry and racial prejudice is to mislead the audience.
    He grew up in privileged and tolerant surroundings, not in the Deep South or in South Side Chicago. By culture and education he is a normal upper middle class American and he’s had a good start in life, which I do not begrudge him – everyone deserves a good chance.
    But he is mixed race, not “black”. And unless you believe America to be a fundamentally racist country, then why would that matter? What should and does matter is his character and his politics.

  3. JOS says:

    On the broader subject of race, what exactly determines “race”? According to the article “DNA Validity and Capability in Ethnic Identification”,

    “While the frequency in genetic variation may differ across classically defined racial groupings, race is neither defined by any collection of genetic variations nor does an individual’s self identification according to race, predict genetic characteristics of that individual.”

    That means there’s no genetic proof of “race”. So, Obama’s race is determined by a superficial analysisis, and he is “black” simply because of the concentration of melanin in his skin. Isn’t that inherently racist?

  4. wien1938 says:

    I think we regard “race” more as a cultural divide, though there are limits. We cannot call someone with white skin a black man, just because he might have been adopted by a black family.
    If we’re talking about cultural backgrounds together with ethnic mixes, then Obama is half black, half white or half Kenyan, half white American. But the point remains that he is talked of and regarded as a member of “black” America, which has connotations of slave ancestry and discrimination, of which he has none in his background.

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