Six years ago we elected our first African American President. I thought racial tensions would improve. Every top position in the government has been held by African Americans and yet our streets seem to be more black and white than ever. We can discuss what happened in Ferguson all day but in the end, the white populace will see it one way and black populace will see it another.
I’m certainly not blaming President Obama for this but let’s look at his reactions – Trayvon Martin was killed and the White House became personally involved – because Trayvon could have been Obama’s son. Michael Brown is killed and it becomes the number one issue at 1600. When was the last time that we have seen this type of reaction from any President on a killing? When a white journalist was beheaded in Syria, our President went golfing.
If we had a gay or lesbian President would we expect him or her to get personally involved if an LGBT person was killed? Probably. Presidents are human and they become involved in what they care about. A female President is most likely to be involved with women’s issues and a President with a disability will probably promote equal access issues. We should understand that President Obama can relate to these situations.
So, why has the country become more divided? Why are blacks more outraged and whites more frustrated that we aren’t looking at the “facts”? Why does it feel more tense than ever? Why do blacks feel like they will “never overcome” and whites feel like “what more do you want”?
Millions of people of all race and creed tuned in to watch football yesterday. The players of that game have “made it”. Most are making a fortune to chase after a ball. And yet, some of them took time to make a statement. The police community demands an apology. We are divided. One side feels like they have their hands up and the other cannot understand why.
We have made a lot of progress but until we stop seeing black and white, we will continue to be biased. We thought that opening doors for every opportunity would heal the wounds. It will obviously take more than that.
Photo: JEFF CURRY/USA TODAY SPORT