Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Ask The Hixx Revealed

So we have one question from last week from the lovely and talented John Alcott.

Mr. Alcott asks:

why oh why are so many (apparently) folks turning against obama???? am i missing something here??? hasnt almost every single newly elected president, attempted health care reform in their first year in office??? why are town halls held with sooo much anger and irrational fear?? WHAT IS GOING ON??!!

A: This is a fascinating question of course. And it's a weird one for me to answer, because oddly enough, I listen to right wing radio. The radio is how I get most of my news since we are no longer cable TV watchers (god I hate the local news, really). So as far as I'm concerned, everyone hates Obama so much they can barely stand to say his name. it's weird, I just assume everyone can't stand him because I listen to Hannity and Limbaugh. Old habits die hard people and I have been listening to WLS my whole life, don't judge me!

Now, why do the hate Obama so much? In order of importance:

1. He's black.
I'm sorry, I'm sure that's the "easy way out" for a lot of people, but he is, and some people really hate it. Are we surprised by this? No. Is that what they're going to say when asked why they hate him? No. They're going to call him a socialist and everything else before they ever admit they are racists. Racism ain't dead, that's for sure. I heard one lady on the news say "he just doesn't look right" I couldn't believe it.

2. He's a liberal
Oooh, we all knew it didn't we? I knew it, that's why I loved him. This man is as liberal as they come I think. I don't even believe he's that religious of a person necessarily, all that Rev. Wright stuff? Obes just needed a cool, street cred place to go to church. I would guess he's all for gay marriage, gays in the military, women being able to make their choice whenever they see fit and to help the poor and the needy. Damn liberal. Taking away all the money from the rich. I heard another lady on the news say (in regards to the school speech) "we just believe in freedom, he doesn't" I find this fascinating. What do they think Obama stands for? Not freedom? Slavery?

3. Emotions
Although Obama seems to be a fairly unemotional, logical human being, he is all about emotion. We all attach something to him, it's easy to, he's black and a liberal (heh). But for all the emotion he elicited on the good side (mine for example, never much followed all this stuff anyway) there has to be an equal reaction on the bad side. Oh man they must HATE this guy with all the fire of their souls. He makes me people care, he makes people mad, for some reason it's just easier to put our wishes on this man be they good or bad.

In all honesty, I think it's because he's black, and because he won. Would another democratic president get this kind of ire if he were white? Maybe, but not this severe. Although, thinking about it, imagine poor John Kerry in this day and age. They would HATE him I bet, maybe it's not so much a black thing, there would be just as much ire from Limbaugh and Hannity, but maybe not as much general fear from the public. I believe that these people honestly think Obama is a muslim out to destroy this county.

So let me add one more behind "black" as a cause:

1.5. Ignorance


Julene said...

1. Obama told MTV he believes marriage is "between a man and a woman" and that he is "not in favor of gay marriage."

2. The Obama administration is telling the Pentagon and gay-rights advocates that it will have to study the implications for national security and enlist more support in Congress before trying to overturn the so-called "don't ask, don't tell" law and allow gays to serve openly in the military I remember someone saying that when you send something off to a committee to be studied more that it's basically a way to not do anything...

3. Meanwhile, Obama offered an artful dodge to the question of when a human deserves rights. "Whether you're looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity is above my pay grade," he said. Like many of his responses that night, it was a long, careful, nuanced plowing of middle ground. He did not suggest that the only rights that matter are a woman's over her body.

Well, I don't feel like finding quotes about taking from the rich to feed the poor... but those statements are definitely not liberal unless you're a republican or believe more in emotional truth than reality - which I think leads us to the place we are in right now - everyone is valuing emotional truths over reality.

This was a concept the Obama used to his advantage during the campaign (anyone else remember the emotional stories his door-to-door canvassers were to tell?). This is a device that the Republicans have been using for years. You can't really get angry about others forcing their emotional truths to the surface, if your main stance during the campaign was to promote emotional truths to get you elected. He made his bed of feelings, he'll have to fight with it now. Which really shouldn't be that hard when it comes to health care. For goodness sake - get out there - promote the morality, the emotional truth of having to declare bankruptcy because you need chemotherapy or got in a car accident.

...but it feels true. UGH.

Hixx said...

Thanks Julene!

So what I think you're saying is A: Obama is not a liberal.

I would argue against it, I never said he wasn't a politician. I think in a hypothetical world where Obama can do whatever he wanted, gays would be in the military, gays would marry, and he'd be just fine with that. It's a guess...but he knows he has to come across as more center and he definitely artfully dodgers the answers as you say. But I think if he were free to speak his real truths, he'd be very very liberal in them.

The emotional part is interesting and maybe part of what I was touching on too, this man is causes great emotional response (and yes, most likely because he uses it to his advantage). But I think there is truth to his emotion. I mean, what is more personal, more emotional than a President of the United States? I'm not sure you can take emotion out of the question and just go on "truth."

But I think you're saying that he should use the morality and the emotion to win the fight, instead of drawing it out.

alcott said...

There are only 43 men who have understood fully the breadth of responsiblity of the office of the President of the United States. we voters get to pick the person we think will give it the best shot...cuz honestly, i dont think any of us have a clue. not really. Barrack is the best guy for the job in this place at this time. His priorities, WITHIN HIS ELECTED TERM, are beyond comprehension, as is the process it requires to complete them.( At least to me.) As a gay man i could give a shit if he never touches the G-marriage file once during his term. not once. It dont matter. He would still come to the wedding, legal or not, and spread a hell of alot of warmth and good wishes, and michelle would bring a kick-ass gift. i know they would. Barrack doesnt 'play' politics- he surmises, thinks, listens, rises above and makes a decision. He knows the history of this country. he knows when its worked and when it hasnt. i am resolved to trust the health care reform, whatever it ends up being. the important point is that it happens. today. in some form or another. he is black and he is very aware that that bugs alot ALOT of folks. he gets that. and he also understands the ignorance of it. people are getting soooo furious and worked up....cuz he's NOT.. i think thats a big emotional button right now. he is a cool, levelheaded smart, informed leader. the more they cry outrage...the more soothing he will become. ..and the more they will keep screaming. he will let joe wilson squirm for awhile, then accept his apology, and allow him back into class if he promises to stop acting like a child and grow the fuck up. Our prez simply belives that everyone needs to be thinking and working and pulling their weight. he aint gonna fix everything, he aint gonna wipe our noses. what he will do is execute the office to the best of his ability..the rest is up to us.

Hixx said...

Right on John! And I think we can all agree, that whatever response he elicits from people it's got a decidedly emotional overtone. I think Julene was touching on that he has to use that in the right way and not just rely on the emotion.

Either way that speech was kick ass.

alcott said...

by the way. thanks for answering my question. who knows what the heck is going to go down from here on forward..
i sure dont. but we can all have faith. and keep talking to each other and listening to each other, and asking hixx questions. obes would love that.