Obama, The Not-So-Magic Negro: Racism, Rush Limbaugh, Donald Trump, and Others

President Obama has recently stated that he suffered racism the same as any black man before his presidency, mentioning things like cabs refusing to stop for him, and being mistaken for the help as opposed to a patron of establishments.  Those things are fairly minor “irritations or indignities” as Obama referred to them.  A few things that he didn’t mention are some of the  slights that he has had to endure during his presidency.  One affront was being referenced as a “magic negro”, but there have been others.

Rush Limbaugh, the conservative radio shock jock, referred to Obama as the “magic negro” during Obama’s first bid for presidential election. I am still trying to figure out what a “magic negro” is, but I suppose that in Limbaugh’s world, a magic negro is an educated, well-spoken black person who appeals to liberal-minded whites, come to cast a spell upon the world, making people believe that they can rid the earth of all its ills.  I don’t know. In my opinion, Rush Limbaugh is a backwards thinking, fear dealing, anti-visionary.  In my world, it is Limbaugh who is actually the grand wizard—the Pied Piper—of modern day racism that casts a spell upon his millions of gullible listeners, duping them into believing that America of the 1950s is the correct vision and goal for America of the 21st century. But, I digress…

Since Barack Obama has been elected President, he has been subjected to all kinds of stupidity—skirting racism—that no other President before him has had to experience.  President Obama, like any not-so-magic negro has been likened to a monkey.  He has been called a liar by a senator within the supposedly hallowed sanctuary of the U.S. Senate.  And, during Obama’s last re-election campaign, Donald Trump, the country’s most famous real estate magnate, questioned the validity of President Obama’s status as a natural born citizen and had the audacity to ask that Obama produce a birth certificate to prove his status.  Why didn’t Donald Trump request a birth certificate of all the white presidents that came before Obama?  Was it because Obama provided an easy target because of his multiracial and multi-national heritage?  Let me just say that sometimes black men in all positions are subjected to much more scrutiny than their white contemporaries.  Moreover, some white men—even if it’s only on a subconscious level—have difficulty accepting a black man as their social, professional and intellectual equal.

Trump’s modus operandi is not so special, and the way that he addressed President Obama is further evidence that Obama is not the magic negro after all.  After Obama provided both the short and long form versions of his birth certificate, Trump basically questioned Barack Obama’s intelligence.  Trump insinuated that Obama didn’t deserve to be at Harvard (or Columbia), saying that he had heard that Obama was a “terrible” student.  Mind you that though Trump denied it, it seemed as though he was suggesting that Obama only got accepted into Harvard due to Affirmative Action.  Now I am not going to discuss the many facets of Affirmative Action, and how whites have benefited from affirmative action in the form of black oppression for hundreds of years, but suffice it to say that Barack Obama is a highly intelligent man who is arguably more qualified at more diverse positions than Donald Trump.

All I am saying is that Trump, as well as anyone else, needs to keep the criticism of Obama—and any black man, really—-above the belt.  Tiptoeing  through racism by using double standards and stereotypes is not exactly a new, clever or subtle way to insult Obama or oppress any black person.  If not outright racist, it is at least racially insensitive.  All Obama or any black man desires is to be given the same opportunity, courtesy and respect that is given any man.  And, just like Obama or any other “negro”, there is nothing magical about it.

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