A few days ago, Oprah Winfrey casually suggested that some significant portion of the unhappiness with Barack Obama’s presidency comes from racism. White conservatives, it seems, simply can’t abide a black man with power.
I’m sure that there are those out there who hate Mr. Obama because he’s black. In a country of roughly 315 million people, there are almost certainly people who hate Mr. Obama because they think he’s a reptilian shape-shifter from Planet Zarkon. But Ms. Winfrey’s wasn’t announcing the truism that large populations inevitably include cranks and jerks. She was unjustly, even contemptuously, dismissing the concerns of millions and millions of pretty decent people.
I can’t detect the slightest resistance within my soul to a “powerful black man.” I seriously considered Colin Powell for the presidency, years ago when he was the potential Next Big Thing. I wish that Thomas Sowell had been in the Senate. Or Walter Williams. I like Condoleeza Rice a lot, and thought she would be a good vice presidential running mate for Mitt Romney. And so forth. (As a white conservative, do I need to prove that I’m not a racist? Guilty until proven innocent?)
No, there are very serious reasons for disapproving of Mr. Obama’s performance as president. And very serious reasons to treat him with the respect of principled disagreement, instead of condescendingly regarding him as a fragile and not too bright child who should be treated with unearned deference in some sort of electoral affirmative action program merely because of his race. (And, anyway, his mother was white.)
Here’s a good expression of (merely) one of the reasons I strongly disapprove of his presidency:
Posted from Park City, Utah