Sunday, November 16, 2008

Racists Coming Out of the Closet

I grew up in Jim Crow Georgia. I've seen people wear racism on their sleeves. I've also witnessed changed attitudes and racism going into the closet.

Apparently many racists are coming out of the closet since President-Elect Obama won the election. If it manifests itself as violence, then that is a worry. Arrest the bastards. If it shows up in conversation, then we each need to engage the racists in dialog. Never, never, never just listen in silence. It only affirms what they may say.

BTW, I still have my Obama sign in my front yard and my Obama sticker on my car. I think the sticker has the same glue that went on the "W" stickers four years ago, which means I must leave it on my car until I sell it.
Photo Detail: This undated file photo provided by Gary and Alina Grewal of Hardwick Township, N.J., shows a charred cross that had been burned on the lawn of their home. The Grewals placed a banner congratulating President-elect Barack Obama on his election victory in their yard and found the banner wrapped around the charred cross Nov. 6, 2008. Lt. Gerald Lewis of the New Jersey State Police says they are treating the incident as a bias crime. (AP Photo/Courtesy of Grewal family) (AP)

Cross burnings. Schoolchildren chanting "Assassinate Obama." Black figures hung from nooses. Racial epithets scrawled on homes and cars.

Incidents around the country referring to President-elect Barack Obama are dampening the postelection glow of racial progress and harmony, highlighting the stubborn racism that remains in America.

From California to Maine, police have documented a range of alleged crimes, from vandalism and vague threats to at least one physical attack. Insults and taunts have been delivered by adults, college students and second-graders.

There have been "hundreds" of incidents since the election, many more than usual, said Mark Potok, director of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate crimes. [ABC]