It's their fears of McCain, you see, that have pushed them into being traitors to their party--any countervailing fears that they might have of electing a black president stay submerged throughout this video.
It's interesting that one of the border-crossing Republicans chosen to testify here is black. That choice seems to steer the video away from an issue that remains unspoken throughout the rest of the testimonials, and indeed, pretty much throughout the Obama campaign's entire presentation of its presidential candidate. That issue is this--if these border-crossing Republicans are really going to vote this new way, one of the things that at least some of them will have to overcome about themselves is their racial prejudice. Which is also true, of course, for a lot of white people who normally vote for Democrats.
This racial subtext, which Obama just cannot avoid or "transcend" no matter how much he tries (or rather, I would say, HAS to try), is brought to the surface by the name of another blog that's re-posted this video: "Bitter White Folks for Obama." That blog's author, who writes under the name of A Bitter, Bitter Man, writes this about the video:
These testimonies are very telling; from what I've been hearing from relatives and friends, the polls are totally skewed--most people aren't fooled, and it's only a matter of time before McCain and Palin will be undeniably on their way out...
What this sardonically named white blogger hopes for is that the possibility of McCain's continuation of Bush's disastrous policies will scare a lot of white people who normally wouldn't vote for a black candidate into doing so. Personally, I hope he's right, and that the polls showing a very close election are indeed totally screwed, er, "skewed." I've been thinking, though, that they're skewed the other way, with many white voters telling pollsters that they'll vote for Obama when they actually don't want to admit they have racist misgivings that will prevent them from doing so.
I also hear that these polls are almost always conducted over the phone, and that the pollsters almost never call people with cell phones. My only phone is a cell, and I imagine that's true for a lot of people, so this may be another way the polls are skewed (or, it may not be). What do you all think--are the polls correctly gauging the tightness of this election? And will the people voting for Obama because they fear the war-mongering McCain outweigh those voting for McCain because they fear the black Muslim Obama?
For me, this video raises another race-related problem. I know that my approach on this blog to "whiteness" can seem unrelentingly critical, especially to some white folks (I also know that on the other hand, some readers don't find my approach critical enough). In fact, I've had regular white readers up and leave because they find my approach too anti-white--one even called me the "Uncle Ruckus of the white race":
I also imagine that what might seem like an unrelentingly anti-white approach here prevents some white readers who discover "Stuff White People Do" from ever coming back.
So I'd just like to say upfront that I don't have anything against white people as people. It's the idea of whiteness itself that I'm writing against, especially because of the misery that it's been inflicting for centuries on people not labeled white, but also for the ways that it dehumanizes white folks themselves.
I do think that white people can escape or undo some of that dehumanization. For instance, they can allow the frightening realities of what a McCain/Palin Administration would be like to overcome the absurd reluctance that some of them have to vote for a candidate just because he's black.
Basically, I wouldn't be writing this blog if I believed that white people can't untrain themselves.
Hat-tip: Acting White