Why I Won’t Stop Criticizing Barack Obama

Oh, barrother.

The WaPo...trying to start something? (Courtesy: Dan_DC)

The WaPo...trying to start something? (Courtesy: Dan_DC)

Yesterday, Krissah Thompson at the Washington Post had an article in which she says that that blacks are now critical of just about anyone in the community who criticizes President Barack Obama. Obama, these supporters feel, deserves nothing but praise for his nearly ninety days in office for trying to fulfill his campaign promises. Tavis Smiley and Jeff Johnson of BET, featured in the article, have been especially bashed in print and online for singling out the President for criticism. Thompson seemed to believe that blacks are too thin-skinned and overly-protective when it comes to Obama.

Seems as though Thompson, and perhaps her handlers, wanted to see much more from the black punditocracy to confirm their meme of all is not well in Obama-land. Thompson shouldn’t have given so much credence to Tavis Smiley, about whom blacks have already smelled a lot of self-promotion and dismissal. And anything and anyone from BET seems to get a fish eye regardless of what is being talked about. We’ll watch the cable network, but we’ll criticize it, too, knowing its track record. What these mainstream outlets don’t realize is that our all is not well is certainly different from theirs.

There’s a variety of opinion on Barack Obama within the black community, from The Field Negro to The Black Snob. Everyone has an angle. As left as I am, I certainly entertain myself going over to places like Booker Rising, the website for black moderates to conservatives to see what the other side has to say once in a while. However, I am not one of those who maintain that Barack Obama’s election “was ordained by God,” as one overly-enthused commenter put it. I don’t hold to the prevalent support the brother no matter what meme either, because it doesn’t work any more in this age. Supporting the brother has a tendency to stab us in the back. I don’t think that Barack Obama is entirely immune to kryptonite, despite his (and Michelle’s) high poll ratings.

My qualms about Barack Obama doesn’t have anything to do with my admiration for him and concern for him, his wife or his daughters. It’s not personal, and I say that as blksista, not as Michael Corleone. I don’t like many of the economic gee-whizzes around him. I don’t like Geithner at all. He seems like Bush II–everything he’s ever done has crumbled to nothing. Or Summers, who’s profited from the same banks he’s now trying to save. Or Bernanke. I don’t buy that Obama needed to use people from the previous Democratic administrations in order to get the economy moving. There are so many newer moderate-to-left people who want very much to help us get our economy back to a stronger and more equitable footing for all Americans, not just for the moneyed class.

Furthermore, I don’t like the lingering smell of taint that these appointments have created. Everyone senses it. FDR used both newer and older hands in his administration. Why couldn’t Obama? I feel that it is something that’s going to allow a long, sharp hat pin to puncture what might be great for all Americans.

I want to see people go to jail who need to go to jail for the sake of justice and fair play. That includes the people who got us into an an illegal war and who abrogated our Constitutional rights during that war. I don’t like how Obama, touted as a Constitutional scholar, is ignoring this and allowing what Bush and Cheney wrought to stand. I feel that this is a dangerous precedent that is going to follow future presidents and administrations.

Otherwise, I like how he has reassured and electrified the world. I like how Michelle has become even more popular than her husband. I love how they love each other publicly. It’s real. These attributes, however, come from their upbringing and despite their upbringing. All this is separate from my political and economic differences with the President.

I used to say that if Obama does anything for black people, it may only be symbolic, to show black people with a sense of normalcy, decency and dignity. Nowadays, I am a lot more ambitious. For instance, I’d like for Obama, through his new Attorney General, to get these cops off our people, especially our youth. Separate the good cops from the bad cops who suspect us of everything, including setting the temperature of Hell, in their need to feel pumped up about anything. Get cops with bachelor’s or master’s degrees who know how to deal with us in our neighborhoods, because this ain’t TV. Not every black American is up to no good. Don’t start none; won’t be none. Especially with the result: coffins, bereaved families, lawsuits, lifelong disabilities, bad publicity, and residual, simmering distrust all around.

Again, my all is not well in Obama-land is not the same agenda as Krissah Thompson’s or the Washington Post’s or BET’s or Jack & Jill Politics’, Angry Black Bitch’s or Black Agenda Report’s for that matter. Though I oppose some of Obama’s policies, he hasn’t completed even six months of his term, although it certainly appears as if he’s been in office for more than that. The impact of his stimulus plan will be hard to gauge until much later; however, his coddling of the banks at the expense of the United Auto Workers who voted for him seems like Reagan messing with the air traffic controllers. And that ain’t right. I maintain that waiting to see what happens is not enough. I feel I have to call it as I see it. If I am wrong, then I am wrong; but if I am right, then damn it, I am right. And so are others who feel the way I do. I’ll watch Obama, but I will criticize him, too.

And so I will always remain, sometimes in opposition, but loyal. Not just to Obama, but also to my country.

I am,


~ by blksista on April 7, 2009.

One Response to “Why I Won’t Stop Criticizing Barack Obama”

  1. Nice post. We need to apply pressure on Obama to do the right thing.


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