Obama’s Tightrope

Amy Luqman too kthe words right out of my mouth.  This piece in the Washington Post was written as as if Amy was in my head.  It talks about the balance that black people have to maintain in this country;  the 2 masks that we have to wear.  This is nothing new W.E.B Du Bois wrote about double consciousness in his book; The Souls of BlackFolk”

Double consciousness is an awareness of one’s self as well as an awareness of how others perceive that person. The danger of double consciousness resides in conforming and or changing one’s identity to that of how others perceive the person. 

The concept of Du Boisian “double consciousness” has three manifestations. First, the power of white stereotypes on black life and thought (being forced into a context of misrepresentation of one’s own people while also having the knowledge of reflexive truth). Second, the racism that excluded black Americans from the mainstream of society, being both American and not American. Finally, and most significantly, the internal conflict between being African and American simultaneously.

This Washington Post Piece; Obama’s Tightrope, says it all.  Some may say that we in the black community are the only ones making an issue out of this, but we have a history of raoming through both worlds, it is a burden that we all carry.  It may not be as bad as it used to be, but it is necessary. 

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One Response

  1. Her statement, “The closer Obama comes to us, the further he would be from winning the nomination and the presidency.” makes me tearful. It’s a sad truth. So far he does look like a viably candidate, though; he’s learned to walk the tightrope well. And he still stands for something no other candidate is backing: Campaign Reform and it’s the only way we’ll have any meaningful change in this country that benefits the people.

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