Nope, no racism in America…

obama-clown.gif

An official clown at the Missouri state fair wearing an Obama mask with a broom stuck up his butt. The announcer whipped the crowd into a frenzy asking if they wanted to see the Obama clown get run down by a bull. Nope, no racism going on here. None at all. The Missouri state fair by the way is a taxpayer-subsidized event, but it’s not socialism because it involves cowboys.

14 thoughts on “Nope, no racism in America…

  1. After additional reflection and learning more about the “clown show”, I have come to learn that this announcer has performed the same act and joke using other previous (including republican) presidents without any back lash. The truth is, presidents get laughed at, mocked and become the butt of jokes. But because our current president happens to be black, all of a sudden it becomes racist to make the same type of jokes and in fact to even criticize his policies become somehow racist. Double Standard is how you spell that.

    • I’m not disputing the fact that, at least on a logical level, there’s a double standard. I’m saying that as Christians we should be sensitive to how black people see it, and we have no reason to be defensive about it.

  2. As Bugs Bunny would say, “What’s all the hubbub bub?” This clown simply did what other clowns in the media have been doing for years and years and years. From mild to wild to even the extreme of masks and effigies being hung and burned, ridicule of President Bush during and even after his administration was the routine norm. Where was the left-wing outrage? Where were the calls for restraint. Where was it said that the office was being cheapened? And… since when did political speech require the approval of pundits?

  3. We can argue or discuss whether this is a racist act or not. That depends upon personal thought, feeling and opinion. The intent of the person who is behind it is unknown to us, or at least to me, so whether it was meant as a racist act is hard to conclude. The condition of a heart that would stoop to such an act is my greatest concern. I find this reprehensible, disgusting, disrespectful and overwhelmingly unacceptable regardless how anyone feels about our president. And I would consider it to be so if were someone else being targeted. Unfathomable to me is that acts of this nature garner support and encouragement.

  4. PS Don’t get me wrong, I think what they did (broom up the bottom) was morally reprehensible and not honorable, but I don’t see it as racism. It’s a black effigy because Obama is black, not to be racist.

    • Thank you for being willing to speak up and dialogue openly about this. Here’s my perspective. It is legitimate to notice that there is a double standard in the interpretation of caricatures of different races but I think that given our history, it’s not inappropriate for there to be one. There are still people alive today who lived in a time when black people could be attacked violently in public without any fear of repercussion. The same people who both spoke and acted violently against black people in the past also drew cartoons with big lips, noses, and other stereotypical negroid features. While I got annoyed if one of my high school students made a cartoon picture of me rather than taking notes, no one has ever claimed that my race as a whole was inherently biologically inferior and drew pictures to illustrate my race’s general stupidity which was perfectly acceptable to do about the negro race until 40 years ago. So when someone makes a doll of Obama looking like a buffoon, to black people looking at it, it’s a doll of their race in general because of the history whereas with white people, we get to be individuals whose behavior doesn’t “represent” our race. If there were ever a time when white people could legitimately fear violence from people who made cartoon images of stereotypical white features (which would be hard to do since a lot of different types of faces get subsumed under whiteness), then it would be reasonable to say that those cartoon images were racist. While it is not my fault what people in past generations did, it is my responsibility to respect the context that they have left behind. And of course as a Christian, the bar is way way higher. If I hear black people saying something is hurtful to them, whether or not I think the racism card is being overplayed, then I need to listen and live out Philippians 2 in response, knowing that humility and love are my best weapons against the divide between us.

      • Morgan,
        I understand what you’re saying here, but I also wonder if there is a statute of limitations. The American version of slavery was reprehensible, like many other things “American” we found a way to do it “more so” than most others, and I believe that there is definite need for sensitivity with regard to our language and the implications that can be drawn from our actions. But as a Christian my condemnation of this kind of malicious imagery is based upon the Bibles teaching about leadership; that we are to be prayerful for and respectful of leadership, even bad leadership (and I intend no backhanded attack on the current administration with that comment). As you said in this comment, there are indeed people who are still alive who remember when open, public violence against minorities went not only unpunished, but celebrated by many. So is the moratorium on African-American effigies lifted when they pass on? I’m just not sure that the answers are found in looking at who is alive now and who isn’t. I’d like to think that in a culture that was actively healing from its past wounds, there would be both a preemptive appreciation for what may offend (leading to decisions made from this sensitivity), as well as a retrospective offering of “benefit of the doubt” until explicit proof of racial motivation was found. Essentially I think what I’m saying is that both the foolish decision of whoever decided to carry out this incident in Missouri, as well as the subsequent leap to cry racism are equally evidences of the problem that our history has created (though granted the cry of racism in the aftermath is an action born of compassion).
        I feel like we have a long way to go. Not because there are so many racists, but because some think there are none and others think they are many. It is these persistent knee-jerk assumptions that have become far more dangerous than prejudice itself in our day and time I fear.

        Just an opinion here. I enjoy reading your blog, so no ill will intended.

        • I hear what you’re saying. I’m not comfortable as a white person saying when something is allowed to be called racism and when it isn’t. So if I hear black people saying that something is, I try to understand their view as best I can and represent it to my white peers.

  5. Why is this racism??? I can tell you for sure that If any president of the past or any in the future, whether Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, black, white or any color for that matter, were to conduct himself towards issues of morality, Benghazi, IRS overreaching (just to name a few), I would love to see and effigy of him run over by a bull as well and it would have nothing to do with racism. It would have to do with what that person did or didn’t do to promote honesty, integrity, morality and sound financial policies in our country. Disagreement is not racism and those who call it such are in fact encouraging something that is simply not there.

    • jmobeox6, this incident is not “disagreement”. It’s violent rhetoric directed towards the President, and the people who put on this stunt should be ashamed of themselves.

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