As America’s self-proclaimed “first post-racial” president, Barack Obama apparently has some work to do. One of the many promises he has not fulfilled as president is his promise to bridge the great racial divide in America. In fact, the evidence suggests that instead of bringing the races together he has contributed to making race relations even more volatile than they were before he took office. The first post-racial president has Americans more focused on race in 2012 than they have been since the bad old days of Jim Crow. This is indeed a sad statement because as America’s first black president Barack Obama had unlimited potential to improve race relations in America, an accomplishment that would have benefited Americans of all races.
What is interesting is that the increased instances of racial intolerance we observe around us are coming not from whites, but from black Americans and liberals of all races. What is even more interesting is that much of the racial vitriol being fomented in America not only comes from blacks, but is aimed at blacks—those who have the temerity to endorse a conservative worldview. But black-on-black racism is grist for another mill. This column focuses on black Americans who are behaving like white segregationists in the days when Bull Connor and his ilk reigned.
By now most Americans are familiar with the FOX News images of New Black Panther Party members showing up at polling places to intimidate white voters in the 2008 presidential election. Of course, the mainstream media outlets chose to ignore these incidents so FOX—as it often is—was a lone voice crying in the wilderness. However, a recent example of a prominent black man behaving badly on the issue of race was not limited to coverage by FOX News. In fact, it occurred in prime time for a much broader audience on the popular television program, Saturday Night Live.
A guest on SNL, comedian Jamie Foxx, adopted the theme, “How black is that?” for his monologue. Of course, there is nothing wrong with this theme per se. It’s what Foxx chose to do with it that is so appalling. Here is an excerpt from the comedian’s routine:
“And I got a movie coming out, ‘Dhango,’ check it out. Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson. “Django Unchained.’ I play a slave. How black is that? And in the movie I had to wear chains. How whack is that? But don’t be worried about it because I get out of the chains, I get free, I save my wife, and I kill all the white people in the movie. How great is that? And how black is that?”
Foxx goes on to claim that President Obama will act “extra black” in his next four years. By the standards of Jamie Foxx one might reasonably ask, does that mean Barack Obama will “kill all the white people”? After all “How great is that?” and “How black is that?”
What is even sadder than this instance of blatant racism from Jamie Foxx is that, like a flock of mindless sheep, the audience compliantly laughed and applauded, the network meekly ran the routine without even questioning it, and the mainstream media ignored the whole thing. Try to imagine what would have happened had a white comedian made similar comments about blacks: 1) the program would have been taken off the air, 2) the comedian would have been booed off the stage, and 3) the comedian’s career would have been toast. Apparently, during the age of Obama not only is racism acceptable, it is funny—provided, of course, it is directed at white people. One can only wonder what Martin Luther King, Jr. and others who endured jail, water cannons, baseball bats, lynch mobs, police dogs, and bombs in their struggle to end racism would think of Jamie Foxx’s “comedy” routine.