White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide by Anderson Ph.D. Carol

White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide by Anderson Ph.D. Carol

Author:Anderson Ph.D., Carol
Language: eng
Format: azw3
ISBN: 9781632864147
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Published: 2016-05-30T16:00:00+00:00

Five

How to Unelect a Black President

On November 4, 2008, the United States seemed to be crossing the racial Rubicon. For a brief moment, the mirage of hope hung in the air, mesmerizing those not just in the United States but also around the world. Barack Obama’s historic presidential victory led an observer in Tehran to note, “The country that they called ‘the great Satan,’ [declaring] it the symbol of all kinds of tyranny, has enough respect for democratic values that [it has] allowed a black candidate to come this far and even become a president.” And from Moscow: “The U.S., that is a country that is really majestic … I feel it is a country where everything is possible.”1 Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu agreed. Obama’s victory, he said, told “people of color that for them, the sky is the limit.”2 CHANGE HAS COME TO AMERICA blazed the headline in the Philadelphia Inquirer.3

Not everyone was ecstatic. As the Republican postmortems on the election poured in, it immediately became apparent that the voting patterns spelled trouble for the GOP. Obama had captured a significantly higher share of the white vote than John Kerry had managed to secure in the 2004 election. Moreover, 66 percent of Hispanics voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama, not to mention 62 percent of Asians, 56 percent of women, 66 percent of voters under thirty years of age, and 95 percent of African Americans.4 The last of these, in some ways, was to be expected. What wasn’t anticipated, however, was that for the first time in history, the black voter turnout rate nearly equaled that of whites.5

The only demographics John McCain could claim to have run away with were the elderly white and evangelical Christian vote.6 And therein lay the problem; for those sectors of the American voting population are not growing. Republican South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham, taking stock of the nearly inevitable demographic apocalypse, put it best: “We’re not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term.”7

This dawning of demographic extinction was all the more troubling because the largest percentage of eligible voters in forty years had cast a ballot in the 2008 election.8 It was not only a record turnout; it was one that delivered an 8.5 million vote differential in Obama’s favor, with 15 million new voters overall. “It’s a bad thing for Republicans when you drill down into all these states, and see lots of new voters, newcomers,” groaned Rich Lowry, editor of the conservative National Review. “It’s like, where did all the Republicans go? Did they move to Utah?”9

This was no idle question either, because the surge in voters came from all across the racial and ethnic ranks—blacks, Latinos, and Asians—of which only 8 percent identified as Republican.10 While the number of whites who voted remained roughly the same as it had been in the 2004 election, two million more African Americans, two million additional Hispanics, and six hundred thousand more Asians cast their ballots in 2008.



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