Late To The Party

On the General's endorsement of Obama... and who really cares what I think anyway.

But it's my blog.

I'd almost forgotten about it... General Powell's appearance on "Meet the Press", and in fact I was supposed to be out the door already, going to Union Square with Bigbear to pick up printing paper for my photographs. But I overslept in a BIG way, and was just getting the coffee together (instant, blech cuz I ran out of Bustelo) when I remembered he was on.

I've always admired Colin Powell. For one thing, he's of Jamaican descent. But for another, he's always struck me as being an honorable man... one who did the job he was supposed to, and did it wholeheartedly and to the best of his ability. But when he found himself disagreeing, he resigned--honorably. Nobody could find fault with that.

For him to endorse Obama is big. And despite what some Caucasians were saying--that it was based on race, General Powell is not the kind of man who would do that. He reminds me of the mental image I have of my Grandpa Will... my father's father, who was a Garveyite and said to "do right, because it is right to do right".

I thought his reasons were well thought out. I thought he was earnest and cool, calm, methodical in his outline. Until he spoke of his concerns that the Republican party was insinuating that Obama is a Muslim. At that point, he leaned forward on the table, clasped his hands, and his tone changed...



This topic is something that has been troubling me for awhile, and I even mentioned it here already. I suppose the rest of the country may not get to see Muslims of any kind on a regular basis, but growing up in Harlem I knew many followers of Elijah Muhammad. And then recently with the influx of African and Arabic immigrants to Harlem, I see more and more of traditional Muslims. I watched as they built the HUGE mosque on the corner of 96th and third Avenue. And I have been asking myself, ever since the picture of Obama in traditional Kenyan garb was "leaked" to the press, insinuating that he's really Muslim... "so what????? So what if he IS Muslim? What does that say about our country? How can we even pretend to be democratic?"

Comments

I agree whole heartedly with you on this one. I got into it with my mom over this Muslim think, and she really had issues with my "so what" even if was true response. It saddened me to even have to be having that conversation with her.

But I agree that Powell's endorsement was intelligent and articulate. It was big, and it really renewed my respect for him..a respect I've also always had.
i remeber when i said he would in dedc and folks said i was dumb for suggesting such and u never late folk
Sydney said…
I know so many people to whom it is not "so what?" if Obama were Muslim :(

Most of them are small-town people of a very fundamentalist Christian bent. Most of them have never actually met someone of a different major religion -- a Jew, or a Muslim. Kind of like....Sarah Palin. And I don't think any of them are qualified to be President either.

I find it heartening that at least some people of integrity are willing to speak out and say "you know what, these things don't matter".

On the other hand, some of Barak Obama's recent "family background" "feel good" ads are leaving me cold. I think he should go back to hitting hard on the issues, because that's his strong ground -- "let's talk about the issues, Sen. McCain".
Fat Lady said…
Well, if I remember correctly, John F. Kennedy took a fair amount of heat for being Catholic. And there were people who thought he couldn't get elected because of his religion. And there's a whole lot of talk about the idea that McCain really wanted Lieberman as his running mate and that got nixed because he's Jewish.

Religious discrimination is as pervasive in this country as racial discrimination. All of it is, of course, ridiculous. But there you have it - there are a lot of ridiculous people in this country.

More power to Colin Powell for speaking his mind, with integrity and intelligence.
i totally agree with this!

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