Friday, May 06, 2011

Show Me Your Papers - An Angry Rant


You're going to try and tell me that this whole issue with Obama's birth certificate is only about his eligibility to be the President of the United States, right?  It's a good thing that I'm writing this days after this happened, because this rant may have been more raw and vitriolic that it's going to be.

So, with that being said, I'm going to get right to it....don't try to tell me that this issue, or anything else that the Birthers, some of the Republicans and conservatives in this country, or some of the Tea Party ("Tea-Baggers?" Pick something else, just makes you a big joke) is nothing more than thinly veiled racism.  These people just can't accept, almost three years later, that a Black man is the President of "their" country, that millions of people had the nerve to vote him into office.  And now they spend their time trying to either prove that he's not really the leader of this nation, not really an American citizen, not really worthy of the highest office in the country, instead of trying to fix what is really wrong with this country (a lot of which was caused by the last few White guys that held the office - Democrat included, so don't go saying that this rant is about that either).

I cannot believe that, in the 21st century, our President was actually "asked" - using the term loosely - to show us his birth certificate, proving that he was born in this country.  Oh, that's not racist, Nichelle, here you people go again, using the race card to cry foul!  Well then, tell me - when was the last time a president was publicly asked, repeatedly, to produce his birth certificate for all to see?  That would  So then he gave us the "short" form - the one that looks like the ones I got for my children when they were born - issued by the state of Hawaii, and all the crazy people yelled, "It says, 'Certificate of Live Birth' not 'Birth Certificate' (or some other official bullshit) so it can't be real!"  What!?!?!!?  Really.  I looked at my own birth certificate, given to me by my mom a few years ago for me to keep track of, issued by the grand state of Colorado, and guess what it says on the top? "Certificate of Live Birth".  Does this mean my birth certificate isn't legitimate?  No, it means that the crazy people are trying to use any excuse possible to turn back the clock and make it so Obama wasn't declared the winner.  So last week, Mr. President had Hawaii release his "long" form - which I realized later is what my birth certificate looks like - for all to see, and maybe have everyone move on to other, more important, things.  There are several things that happened (or didn't) that evoked several feelings.

First, I was crushed.  Did this just happen?  Did our President, my President, just have to prove for the second time, that he was born in the United States?  Why is this happening? 

Then I got angry - oh yeah, I remember...this is happening because I still live in a racist country, whether or not anyone wants to believe that, this is still an incredibly racist country, and it took the election of a Black man to the highest office in the land for my country to show its real face...the one that still sees me (and my son) as "less than" because of our mocha skin.

Third, I started looking for validation that, maybe, my angry reaction was wrong....and I got a little of both.  No surprise, though, that most of the validation came from people who look like me and the friends of people who look like me. The Donald said that he was "friends with 'the Blacks'." I'm here to tell you - anyone who is friends with "the Blacks" don't call us that. Bigots trying not to look like bigots call us that.

Now that Obama has produced the very thing Trump and the other haters asked for, not only does he refuse to look at it, but he has moved on to questioning his qualifications for acceptance into Harvard Law, Occidental, and Columbia. This isn't any better - now this tiny man is questioning the intelligence, not just this very important Black man, but every Black person that ever went through the doors of any of those institutions.

I did end up getting some vindication - after all of this, while Trump was claiming victory saying that he forced Obama to produce the birth certificate, he then got "informally" roasted at the Correspondents' Dinner while the President was multi-tasking and planning the death of Osama bin Laden....and never let on that he was doing it. Bam!...take that, little lame-ass man! While you were pretending to be important, Obama IS important, and did something that none of your compatriots could do, and Obama's predecessor even said that he "didn't think about bin Laden that much; I don't spend that much time on 'im." Thanks for getting your priorities in order...

But back to my original angry rant - I'm tired of people saying that everything that is happening in this country has nothing to do with race, and everyone is so afraid to talk about it but okay to let others get away with questioning the President's citizenship, or parading around with signs or pictures of him looking like an ape with a turban on, or making statements like, "What planet have I landed on? Did I slip through a wormhole in the middle of the night and this looks like America? It's like the damn Planet of the Apes." (Thank you, Glenn Beck, for that brilliant statement) And with the kinds of laws states like Arizona and Colorado and others are passing (or trying to pass), it won't be too long before everyone with skin darker than 2% milk will have to "show me your papers."


At 8:55 AM, Blogger Katy Angello said...

My dear, we have had our political disagreements in the past, but on this one I am right there next to you. There was a time that I thought perhaps racism in this country could be banished to the history books, but it seems to be seeping back in to acceptance none so subtly. I will teach my child that racism has no place in this world, and pray that all other parents do the same.

At 9:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nichelle, you are right on here. It is too bad that our culture is still like this. As I've done the PhD and begun teaching, looking at old records, and all that, it has sadly become clear that our society is nowhere near as civilized or enlightened as I had once thought (not that my expectations were high, but reality falls short of even those). Most of what we are taught concerning the USA and its origins is mythology, and that is done to cover up the unpleasantries that are there right in the records. Really, Americans of today are no better than those of the 1840s, although we assume of course that we are. For example, the Tea-Party. What a misnomer! The real Boston Tea Party was NOT done by conservatives or by "American" patriots, nor was it even called the 'Tea Party' but I digress. You mentioned 'Tea-Baggars' earlier--but did you know this? At least some of them call themselves this, and there are pictures of a woman holding up a sign saying "We are the Tea-baggars!" So, that is where the term comes from. Goes to show that some of them are so stupid that they don't even see the difference!

At 9:28 AM, Anonymous PammyJean said...

I'm with you on this. I'll be curious to see how the election pans out (though I'm not at all looking forward to the leadup to it). Does the opposition have ANYONE worthy of the office?
On a daily basis, I see FB friends posting things alluding to Obama's religion, his intelligence, his nationality, etc. Hardly ever do I see posts questioning his policies. THAT, I could respect.

I think that many of the people spewing (sorry -- regurgitating) this crap may not be racist. Rather, they are blindly following the blathering idiots who almost certainly are racist. That doesn't excuse them, though.

And as the adoring aunt of a girl who has been born to parents who couldn't be further apart on the skin brightness dial, I suspect that I may be witness to more such conflicts, tests and frustrations in years to come. But I'll see what I can do, to help educate those around her.


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