There is a recent AP/Yahoo news survey out that examines the link between race and Obama’s poll numbers. The problem is though that the survey is almost entirely on non-Hispanic white voters. Evidently this is the only race of people that vote according to the AP and Yahoo news. Story here
Where do you start with a survey like this? This survey, while trying to explain racism, is incredibly racist in itself.
First, what does a typical white voter look like? Other than badly in need of tan of course. The article does break whites down into Republicans and Democrats but this is too simplistic for someone of any race. The political spectrum is complex in what constitutes party affiliation. There are social liberals and conservatives, fiscal liberals and conservatives, and a combination of both. There are people who are very liberal or conservative and would never vote for the other party. There are people who are moderate and can be drawn to the opposite candidate for many reasons, including yes race, age, and/or gender. There are some voters who don’t even follow the issues and vote based on how they feel about a person. These people may or may not vote for Obama, irregardless of his race, but because of some other characteristic such as likeability, speaking ability, etc. These factors alone cloud the study. For some voters race may be an issue but not the issue. Race along with any of the above could push them away. This does not make race the factor, it makes it a factor.
There also is the issue of racial attitudes being complex and virtually impossible to measure. If there is a person on God’s earth without any racial prejudice, I would like to meet them. No one, including myself, can say they are without some prejudice. It is human nature, it is ingrained into our very fiber. Further, it is not just racial, it is gender, height, age, etc., etc., etc. Everyone of us has it and anyone reading this that thinks they do not is lying to themselves. But, you know what? It’s ok. The key is to not go out and behead someone or fly a plane into a building because your innate prejudice has turned into psychotic hatred. Oops, that sounded a little prejudiced.
Since everyone has prejudice, what does this mean? Very little to everything. There is a huge difference between prejudice against a race and prejudice against a person. You may have an issue with, blacks as an example, but when you go to work and see Joe, things are fine because he’s “different”. This is often the case with all biases. It’s easier to dislike an anonymous group than an individual. I believe this is another flaw in the study. I think it is a little simplistic to say people will not vote for Obama just because he is black. I think most of these people have another issue and that, combined with race, equals a no vote.
Finally, there is the most obvious issue with the survey. Why only whites? Why not Hispanics, Asians, and, of course, blacks. Why have we never studied why blacks vote almost entirely for Democrats? It certainly isn’t because they have done so well under the Democrats. What exactly have the Democrats done for them really? The Democratic party by and large favor policies that are actually destructive to blacks. The welfare system of the 60’s and 70’s had insane rules that favored unmarried women over married. This set up a cycle of generation-to-generation single motherhood that blacks are still trying to break. This single motherhood has led to a host of other social ills that feed on each other, lower high school graduation rate, higher unemployment, and higher imprisonment rates. Liberals favor a wide open abortion industry that disproportionally effects blacks. Finally, I do not believe that blacks are more stupid than others and buy the hollow, unfulfilled promises of Democrats that they receive decade after decade. Is it possible that blacks vote overwhelmingly for Democrats because they view the GOP as the party of “old white guys”? Admittedly if this were true it would likely be the fault of the GOP as much as the Democratic party but nonetheless is still a racial attitude. Why isn’t this studied? Why didn’t they study why blacks aren’t voting for McCain/Palin, is it racism?
The study did try to address all of the above issues but, as I sad before, I believe the simple fact that it was done to begin with is racist in itself. Further, while the study did say that there could be other reasons besides race why voters are not flocking to Obama, the fact that the survey was done in the first place speaks to an arrogance and incredulousness on the part of the AP and Yahoo that they feel a need to examine why not everyone is rushing to The One like they are. They seem to have to explain why we are not all basking in his glory. Maybe it’s not because he is black after all? Maybe it’s because he is a vacuum headed, arrogant, inexperienced, unprincipled, unpatriotic, insufferable, wishy-washy, empty suit. But, then again, I admit I have always been prejudiced against vacuum headed, arrogant, inexperienced, unprincipled, unpatriotic, insufferable, wishy-washy, empty suits.