My thoughts on Barack Obama one week after he stepped down as US president:
President Obama was a huge disappointment: Drone Master, Wall Street water boy, Rented Negro, Deporter-in-chief. To get his attention Black people had to protest and riot in the streets. He was, in effect, Bush III, more than I thought any Democrat could be. What little good he did is now being swept away by President Trump.
It is good that the US had a Black president. In the long run I think it will help weaken racist stereotypes. Obama and his family were the picture of grace and dignity. You could not ask for better. But the shock proved too much for the nation, even with its ideas about Exceptional Negroes. And now we must live through the grotesque White blacklash.
Obama squandered his moral authority as the country’s first Black president. Like Lincoln, his words could have lived for over a hundred years, the sort schoolchildren – and therefore the nation – would be made to learn. Instead he called the Baltimore rioters “thugs” and stood where Martin Luther King Jr once stood, 50 years before to give the “I Have a Dream” speech, and mouthed lizard-mouth Reagan:
“Legitimate grievances against police brutality tipped into excuse-making for criminal behavior … And what had once been a call for equality of opportunity, the chance for all Americans to work hard and get ahead, was too often framed as a mere desire for government support, as if we had no agency in our own liberation, as if poverty was an excuse for not raising your child and the bigotry of others was reason to give up on yourself.”
But I am disappointed in myself too for having had such faith and hope in this man. Ralph Nader, who I voted for twice, warned that Obama would do nothing for Black people. Obama, right in his own book, “The Audacity of Hope” (2006), pretty much agreed:
“An emphasis on universal, as opposed to race-specific, programs isn’t just good policy; it’s also good politics”
It was not Republican obstructionism that stopped him. He was New Black, a colour-blind racist. It is not for the government to uphold equality before the law – no, it is for Black men to be better fathers.
I thought by voting for him I was voting for me. But when he became president he started doing stuff I would never do. I thought maybe power was turning him bad. No, it was not that. It was his mindset. He believes in American exceptionalism, meaning US exceptionalism. He believes Black people are held back more by their own pathologies than by racism. His White mother likely believed the same.
There were two huge red flags even before the 2008 election. First, he threw his own pastor under the bus, Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Second, there was all the money he accepted from big Wall Street banks. The writing was on the wall but I did not want to read it.
– Abagond, 2017.
- Posts from the Obama era and before:
- 2007: Barack Obama
- 2008: Barack Obama for president
- 2008: Yes, We Can
- 2008: Obama wins!!!
- 2009: Barack Obama is now president
- 2011: Obama seems like a different person
- 2012: Why I am voting for Obama
- 2012: The incomplete list of children Obama has killed with drones
- 2013: Is Obama a Rented Negro?
- 2013: Obama’s “I Don’t Have a Dream” Speech
- 2014: Obama then and now: War in Iraq
- 2017: Yes We Can – the song is the same yet not the same
- Jeremiah Wright
- New Blacks
- colour-blind racism
- US exceptionalism
- Samantha Power – his long-time foreign affairs adviser
- Baltimore riot