Still Not Colorblind This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

January 31, 2009
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I often heard about the presidential election on the news. You probably did too, if you expose yourself at all to the sickly sun of the American media. Journalists, reporters, and every other member of the information army practically wet themselves with exultation at the election of the United States’ first African-American president. And so have American citizens. There are still “Obama ’08” signs in yards, on cars, bridges, babies, and anything else that can be decorated with that godly O – his supporters still have that smug smirk glued like a bumper sticker across their faces.

Reading this, you might come to the conclusion that I am a rabid racist and torch-waving conservative, but hear me out! I am not a racist – in fact, I am almost certainly more colorblind than you, Obamanite. Barack Obama is now America’s first black president. You may say “Hooray!” but I say “So what?” You might tout his victory as a sign that racism is dead, and equal opportunity is, if not here, then well on its way. I disagree.

Racism is discrimination. Discrimination is not simply the act of deriding or oppressing a particular race. I believe it is any emphasis of racial differences. If a caucasian sees himself as “white” and identifies with others of his skin tone to form a coalition promoting his race, this is racist. By this logic, pro-black coalitions are racist too. And those who vaunt Obama’s presidency as a victory for African-American people are included.

In my experience, modern society is not discriminatory in its presentation of opportunity. There are black CEOs; there are white hobos; there are ­members of every race in every position. It’s the beauty of America! And yet still some insist on highlighting Obama’s victory as something strange and wonderful. Not only is it an insult to the American spirit to be fascinated by a black president, it’s an insult to those who have fought for this spirit.

The proper response to Obama’s election should have been: “We have a new president. Will he do a good job?” It is foolish to think that just because Obama is black, he will do a good job. Those who share my opinion see Obama not as racial crusader in shining armor, but as a politician whose ­actions must be analyzed logically. In short, the fact that America still ­perceives races as “different” is shameful. In a land of equal opportunity, the best will win – and the best has been chosen.

Celebrating Obama’s victory in a racial context is simply celebrating past racial divides. The election was not a victory for African-Americans, but a victory for all Americans.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 210 comments. Post your own now!

edwardcullen4always said...
Feb. 27, 2010 at 11:18 am
Omaba is not black he is mixed....but good article
shakesbeer replied...
Jun. 28, 2010 at 4:40 pm
you are aware you made a fool of yourself hes not black he mixed you sound like you belong in an Asylum he has a race and last time i checked he was  the 1st BLACK preident
scribblesinthecity said...
Feb. 26, 2010 at 12:14 am
you make ai good point, but it seems to me that you have forgotten that our differences in culture are what make America; America. If we forget that, or consider celebrating it as racist-like you seem to, then we will certantly loose the essence of what makes each of us special, individual, unique americans. and as far as people celebrating out first black president- we celebrate not only him being African American and president, but that he is the first; and hopefully not the last. We are ackno... (more »)
spontaneous09 replied...
Mar. 2, 2010 at 9:28 pm
I agree completely. And, just because you supported Obama or were completely behind McCain does not make you racist.
scribblesinthecity replied...
Mar. 5, 2010 at 8:47 pm
exactly! and i also agree completely with the comment you left above.
rightbehindyou61 said...
Feb. 9, 2010 at 9:16 pm
I see your logic, however you make it sound as if we should ignore our differences. By that logic, if someone else likes country music, I should not even listen to that because that would be acknowledging that we are not the same. Our differences should be embraced, not shunned! If we ignore what makes us different from one another, our lives will quickly become monotonous.
crawfordkid This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 8, 2010 at 9:42 pm
A very nice and well-written article; I especially enjoy the refreshing change of hearing someone who has a good enough head on their shoulders to use logic and common sense in political discussions. A very nice article indeed!
krazyc1901 said...
Feb. 8, 2010 at 4:35 pm
SharpestSatire said...
Feb. 8, 2010 at 1:08 pm
SO GOOD. I agree. :)
Ellie_Michelle said...
Dec. 26, 2009 at 9:21 pm
I totally agree! That's what I was thinking myself.
AnneOnnimous said...
Dec. 26, 2009 at 2:16 pm
i disagree on one point- racism doesnt necessarily mean that you notice their race- you're not sexist if you notice someone's sex , its just a natural odservation. If you notice someone's race and do nothing about it and don't think any different about them because of it, they most certainly are not, as you said, racist!!
montana said...
Dec. 26, 2009 at 10:04 am
u r right. Can you read my review and critigue it. Thx
Dandelion said...
Dec. 26, 2009 at 8:38 am
Exactly what I've always thought! When I see a person of a different race, it doesn't even register in my mind that this person is any different that I am, or that I should support them for this reason. Well said!
case said...
Dec. 18, 2009 at 12:24 pm
as a fact, i just got back from posting on the topic of "is obama full of junk" and i see what you mean, as any presedent just because he is a ethnic poster boy doesn't mean he can make a few mistakes once in a while. this shows weakness, mortality, and i think we chose a canidate who can handle these reponsibilities.
Persona said...
Dec. 16, 2009 at 12:52 am
Though I personally support Obama, I agree. I could not get over the fact that my Sign Language teacher would not shut up about my non-recognition of how important it was that a black man was elected, then chastising me as if supported McCain, when in face the opposite was true. One should support their politicians based on their policies, not their race, ethnicity, party, or religion.
Destinee This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Mar. 24, 2010 at 3:52 pm
I agree completely. It often annoys me how people often voted for Obama because of his colour, instead of his policies.
*JustDance* said...
Dec. 4, 2009 at 11:39 pm
I completely and totally agree. A lot of people just voted for him because he was black and they wanted an African-American president. I have no problem with having an African-American president, but the fact that they voted based on race and not his political views in my opinion is racist. People could be called sexist for not voting for Hilary Clinton, I think it's just stupid for people to see this as a sign that we're finally over racism as you pointed out.
People of all dif... (more »)
Miss_Bliss said...
Dec. 4, 2009 at 10:48 pm
Though I've never really thought about it this way, I have to agree with you. Everyone (even me) is triumphant over having an African-American man as president at last, as, like you said, they (we) believe the US has overcome most racism and racist beliefs. But a) there are still acts of racism being committed every day (there were some pretty big ones reported right after the election), and b) America will only really be truly non-racist when we CAN, like you said, evaluate our new preside... (more »)
desiree1 said...
Dec. 4, 2009 at 10:23 pm
I agree completely with this article. (plus it's admirably well written, good job!) however, i totally see why people would celebrate that Obama is black anyways, because they are celebrating the progress we are making towards a discrimination free future. i mean, consider all of the things that Americans have done to their fellow Americans of different races the past several centuries... although some may applaud obama for the wrong reasons (like with what you said of people saying he'... (more »)
Abby:) This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Dec. 4, 2009 at 9:57 pm
I agree to some degree. I mean, its true that we shouldn't think that since Obama is here, racism is gone. And we probably should focus more on what he is going to do for America's future. But this is a big step of progress towards a discrimination-free future. Emphasizing this step is not a form of racism, but the acknowledgement of it, and a celebration that we are really making advancements. Black people used to tell their children that "they can be anything, but President.&quo... (more »)
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