Dr. Boyce: How Black America Has Changed Because of the Obama Presidency

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World

Someone forwarded me an email the other day about President Barack Obama. Viral emails about the Obama family have become an industry within themselves, with millions of black folks hanging on every word, event or insult being thrust at the Black American royal family. Will and Jada were once the best we had, and now they have to ride in the back of the chariot.

The email about the president had an interesting subject line. The subject line said the following: “Tom Joyner Receives Heat for His Calls to Re-elect President Obama.” I thought about the topic for a second while sipping a cup of coffee, reminiscing on critiques that I myself have leveled against Tom for telling black folks that we should support President Obama just because he’s black. History makes it clear that supporting or rejecting someone solely because of the color of their skin can lead you down a slipperly slope of ignorance: Just ask millions of people in war torn countries who’ve been terrorized by people who possess the same skin color as their victims.

The beauty of it all, at least now, is that the Tom Joyners of the world are no longer the credible threats to democracy that they once were. Just three years ago, even a hint of dissent toward the Obama Administration was met with the kind of verbal blitzkrieg that would make a grown man cry.

Millions of black folks were watching the throne when Obama was sworn in and gladly putting his picture right next to Martin Luther King and Jesus. Public figures were afraid to give anything less than whole-hearted support for everything the president did, at the risk of being ridiculed, chastised and racially-excommunicated – if you said anything negative about the president, you were nothing but a “jealous hater,” and there was nothing you could do about it. I spoke at a church in New York on the day that President Obama was sworn in and (literally) heard the choir director change the words of the song “We Shall Overcome,” to “We have overcome.” I’m not kidding.

But the Obama presidency, at least the first three-fourths of it, has served as a marvelous and intriguing political education for the African American community. We’ve learned that politicians of all ethnic backgrounds think the same way and that nearly every Harvard/Yale educated Washington Bureaucrat seeks to protect corporations and other privileged citizens before doing much of anything for black folks. We also learned that critical matters such as racial inequality in the economic, educational and criminal justice systems are merely polite afterthoughts for even the most progressive Washington crony-ologists.

Tom Joyner’s massive radio following consists of millions of black Americans who love him, some of whom even respect him. But similar to the preacher on Sunday who tells you to stop having sex, many of Tom’s listeners are also politely ignoring him. Not to say that they won’t agree with Joyner that President Obama is the best political option they’ve got, but they understand that bureaucrats should be judged not by the color of their skin, but by the choreography of their caricature.

Barack Obama is a hero, but he’s no superhero. It is no longer taboo to critique the president’s policies, and it’s not even “ethnically illegal” to vote for a Republican. Black people have learned, without question, that the face of the president means almost nothing when it comes to improving their lives. At the same time, we’ve also learned that democracy is best served through diversity of thought and that every voice has value, even if you don’t follow the crowd.

Black America is freer, smarter and more capable because of the Obama presidency. Tom Joyner can go brag about that.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is the founder of the Your Black World Coalition.  To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here. 

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45 Comments

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45 responses to “Dr. Boyce: How Black America Has Changed Because of the Obama Presidency

  1. Renelda Moorehead

    My! Oh, My! What a tepid piece that was. Obama was chosen to become the first ‘black’ President–carefully groomed–because HE IS CULTURALLY
    WHITE, but looks black. And his very black(from the ‘hood) wife was chosen for him to add credence to his fake blackness. I accepted that, and thought it
    quite clever on the part of Obama’s image-makers,handlers, et al. Your article does stroke the truth. Black Democrats are beginning to see that their
    ‘messiah’ is culturally a white man. As the great Josephine Baker may have
    said, “We don’t all wake up at the same time. But the important thing is that we DO wake up.” As I see it, black folks are still very much inured with the SLAVE MENTALITY. WE–especially the whiticized intellectuals–still need
    permission to think outside the box in which we’ve been placed. ONWARD.
    And in the words of the great Rev. Jesse Jackson, “KEEP HOPE ALIVE.”

  2. Dr. Edwin L. Coleman, II

    It appears that you and some of your commentators cannot get enough of criticizing President Obama. Why? Because he is not BLACK enough? Is it because he has more intelligence? What? Why all the “intellectual ragging?” Where would African Americans be if ner-do-well Bush had be elected or one of the idiots running from the tearpublicans party?
    Or, there is another choice—don’t vote and see how much you’ll be crying.

    Get up off of the man and let him do his job. Ease up!!!

  3. Emma J. Wisdom

    Dr. Boyce Watkins summarized President Obama’s past performances well: “that President Obama is the best political option they’ve [African Americans] got, but they [also] understand that bureaucrats should be judged not by the color of their skin, but by the choreography behind their caricature.

    Dr. Watkins framed his commentary in such sure-footed terms that many people might [will] miss his message. In other words, the president’s rhetoric remains unchanged from that which was so fervently and conveniently and with great intensity used in 2008 to get himself elected.
    But in many respects he has failed African Americans.
    Now what people?

  4. Rex

    “UP, YOU MIGHTY RACE….”

  5. Charles McGee

    Dr. Coleman: I voted first in 1958 when I was 21 years old and fresh out of the U S Army. I have NEVER missed an election since, major or minor, wherever I resided. I became a Black Power advocate in 1963 and have never look back. There was never anything I needed from the Islamic Indonesian. All he had to do is end the Iraq nonsense on January 22, 2009. When he said he was retaining Robert Gates as Secretary of Defense I knew that nothing would change. Had change been in the cards he could have selected a peace advocate, not necessarily my favorite Daniel Ellsberg, but a person of peace nevertheless. I take Mitt or Newt because I have a chance to influence the outcome. I know-by his footprints, what Barack Obama is about. I find it stunning that America would attack Libya and rearrange the political landscape of North Africa. I contributed cash money and time in 2008 on behalf of the Obama campaign. That will not happen during this cycle. I have already contributed to both Herman Cain and Mitt Romney. You are free to do as you please. Enjoy your journey.

  6. Ernie

    First of all I must say that I never believed for one minute that President Obama was going to save us. We all better understand that we must save us from us and no one person whether they are in the White House or the outhouse is going to do for us what needs to have done. Saying all of that, I don’t agree with everything that has gone on in DC but we are fools to believe that white folks were going to allow President Obama to succeed. He has been disrespected like no other President in history with comments made about his wife and children that are despicable to say the least. No I am not supporting him because he is black but since when has that been a problem for white folks, they do all of the time so I don’t apologize for supporting Barack. Let’s be clear, he is smarter/brighter than many of those who have come before him. Where was all of this criticism when, YOUR FIRST SO CALLED BLACK PRESIDENT (Bill Clinton) was in office and don’t tell me how great he was. He was a poor white boy raised in the south among black folks; he knew how to play us because he learned from living and playing among us. We taught him about us and with his inherit intelligence he played us, with, ” am I black enough for you”. Clinton was one of the worst President Blacks folks every had; look at his policies directed at poor Black folks. Say what you will or may; I support our President and will continue to do so until you show me a candidate that’s better.

  7. omegawife1

    Ernie, well said my brother, well said. I don’t see why it is such a problem with black folks supporting their own, shoot every other race does it, so why can’t we. Yes, there are times when I criticize the president. However, when I look at the candidates we have as other options, I don’t regret a bit supporting Obama, not because he is BLACK, but because he is the best man for the job at the moment. Constructive criticism is wise, but when it leads to destruction, it can’t be good. God bless my people!

  8. Ernie

    Thank You, from a Lifemember of Alpha Phi Alpha.

  9. commonsense

    boyce, what is your problem with tom joyner? can you give it a rest…please! why are you so intoxicated on the man…you look small and foolish everytime you attack tom when the issue is about obama. tom is not the only visible person supporting obama (how come you never attack rev. sharpton and his blind support of obama)?

  10. Bettye

    How can anyone expect any President to do their job with as much hate that is going on right now. The President is only one individual and without Congress’s support (which they vowed to withhold) what can he do? We need to encourage the President to stand when all else fails. President Obama is the President of the U.S. not of African Americans or any other individual race or culture. Come on, let’s be fair and give credit where credit is due.

  11. Raziel

    The story indicates that Dr. Watkins received an email with the subject line “Tom Joyner receives heat for…” The fallacies regarding voting color and not conscience was discussed, but not in a way that demeans Tom Joyner. Attack; I don’t get that, but it is a solid preface to state that the ridicule that dissenters once received has lessened over the last three years. I can say that the arguments reenforce how fragmented African Americans are as a group. Further, and more alarming for me is how easily we attack one another for speaking our minds and being honest in the process. Where and when did we lose sight of not being disagreeable when we disagree? I am happy that many hold Obama to a very high standard. He is the President of the United States. However, we should not be foolish enough to believe that our plight would change because someone is in the whitehouse that looks like us. If there is going to be a change in the African American condition, African American’s need to fashion that change and American politics is not the answer. White supremacy 101, institutional racism and the uncivil nature of public opinion debating makes clear to me that we need to stop just talking and start a real dialogue about what we need to do to secure the future that the Lenni Lenapi envisioned for our people. The Spiral Hair People.

  12. I do not have a problem confessing I support Obama because he is black, amongst other things. The fact that he is half white dose not disqualify him from being called the “N” word as they have done so many times during his presidency. If elected for a second term, I truly believe African Americans will reap the benefits. He will address multiple issues concerning us and go out with his head held high and a black fist in the air. I’m sure Mrs. Obama, who grew up on the south side of Chicago, is going to make sure he takes care of his own or he will be sleeping on the sofa for many nights. My people, we will be fools not to vote for Obama in the up coming elections. If we chose not to support him and vote for the dominant culture, we will set ourselves back 100 years and continue the slave mentality cycle.

  13. BlackBeauty

    I support the President because he is BLACK, and because he is smart, and because he is the best choice for us at this time!

    Please direct us to someone better!

    For those black folks who thought that Mr. Obama was somehow going to “save us”, please get a grip! Exactly what did you expect the President of the United States (President to all of the people) to do to “save” you??

    If you have not saved yourself by now then there is nothing else to say!

    Look around you and you will see what accomplishments Mr. Obama has made during his term, and he has shown that he is a strong black man who has endured racism, hatred, and punch in the face from so many directions, BUT STILL HE ROSE! There is no other person out here, DEM or GOP who will do any better.

    There is nothing wrong in supporting the President because he is black! Whites and other races of people support their own day in and day out and for generations! Why should we have a problem supporting our own??

    Dr. Watkins, you must have run out of your usual tired commentary, and so it is back to bashing Obama!

  14. Iam disappointed in Obama too, but I am sure he went to Washington with a sincere hope of changing things — only to meet with an aggressive, covert and Fascist operation in Congress, in the media and teabagging racists on the streets.

    What’s a ‘pioneering 1st black president’ to do faced with such hefty, filthy crap?

    The presidency of the U.S. is a totally unknown territory for blacks — a lot like when blacks were allowed to vote for the first time.

    I think Obama has held on well, despite several misteps.

    As for Tom Joyner giving Obama 110% support…..why not, considering the alternative — Republicans!, 40% of who are in permanent “hanging” mood.

    I say it is still big taboo to vote for anyone who even mildly cavorts with right-wing Republican filth.

    Vote Obama in for a second term. A defeat in 2012 would be a huge victory for racism in America. On the other hand, an Obama win would be another precious baby step towards the necessary dismantling of “Apartheid” in these United States.

  15. Shirlene Pryor

    I have read many articles written by Dr Watking concerning Tom Joyner, Steve Harvey, and other staunch supporters of Our President Obama. I have determined that book learning and and formal education has no depth of understanding unless tempered by DIVINE wisdom sent to us by THE HOLY SPIRIT. There are vast and unlimited forces determining what is happening in the political arean of this country and countries all over this planet. Mr Obama represents the best of the best of these forces even with all of the negatives surrounding him. Dr. Watkins, it is not all about YOU. You are not the only HIGHLY EDUCATED BLACK MAN that did not make it to Mr. Obama’s INNER CIRCLE so stop hating on those that do.
    There is a fine line between self-esteem and egotisim. You seem to have one leg on the self-esteem side and the other firmly planted in egotisim.
    And……..Please do not compare Baraci H. Obama 11 to dictators of other countries. That is soooooo unfair.
    S

  16. dr. kelly mcdowell

    Shirlene Pryor :
    when it comes to boyce watkins…you nailed it .

    he cannot seem to accept the fact that the obama administration does not see him as a person of influence in the black community.

    initially he sided with cornel west to attack get even with obama (but realized the majority of black people were not going for his sinnister machinations) he then turned his anger towards tom joyner and steve harvey (who have never attacked boyce) in a jealous rage due to being viewed by obama as having more influence and importance in the black community.

    two comedians have more importance over a ph.d is driving boyce coocoo and his ego cannot handle it.

  17. Lynn

    Here here! Great piece, Dr. Boyce! My sentiments exactly.

  18. Juanita Nolan

    American wake up. Whether it’s black or white, this world is headed for the coming of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Read the writing on the wall or read the book of Daniel, Revelation, and all the major and minor prophets. President Obama and no other President can save nor rescue Blacks, Whites, Mexican, and no other color. We’re in the closing of the Gentile Age. Things are not going to get better people; things are going to get worse. The rich, big corporation, Republican, Democrats, Tea Party and no President can stop the hands of God. Jesus is coming back for His (Bride) the church. Whether you are rich, poor, black, white, mexican

  19. Juanita Nolan

    ….or any other color, and that’s includes all politicians, including all past, present, and future presidents. This Age will end, and all got to stand and give an account of our deeds whether good or evil. God has no respect of person. If we have not accepted the Lord Jesus as our Saviour and repented of our sins, we all will be casted into outer darkness and there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, including me to if I miss out on Salvation. We here worry about President Obama, the Republicans, Tea Party, and Democrats and God knows what else. all these people got to stand before The Righteous Kings….”King Jesus”. All we can think about is what the President is doing or not doing for blacks. Or what’s going on
    with the Tea Party, Republicans, and Big Corporation. We all better do what Jesus told Nicodemus in St. John 3:3-5th chapter. You better read and do, because no one escape this King; not even Dr. Boyce. When our President decided to run for President of these United States, he didn’t go into this thing blind. He knew Satan was going to use every weapon he had to throw at him. Can’t you see what Satan is doing? You are falling into his devices and trap. For those who can get a pray through to God need to pray for
    The President, The United States, and the enemies of the President, including the whole universe. Jesus told us to pray for our government and rulers and not to sow discord. No matter how you talk, you cannot change one hair on ones head. Have you ever thought that God is using Satan’s children to bring you to repentance. Wake up people; the day is far spent and nights draw near. It’s later then you think. Death knocks on our door daily. Are you saved? Are you ready to meet Jesus in the sky? Do you believe in Jesus? Or do you believe he’s a mist? If you are a non-believer, I admonish that you do and follow what the Jews asked Peter in The Book of Acts 2 chapter and do what Peter told them to do when they realize they had killed their King. Read what Peter said to them in Acts 2:38-39. you’ll find the answer to salvation. Again, stop gossiping about the President, whether he’s right or in error, only God knows. You are worse off because you stands in daminafion of hell fire and judgement. Again, Mr. President is not God. If he’s is wrong as you think, he has God to give an account to, not you. I really hope he don’t run again. God need to put someone in there to make you howl and morn like an animal in terrible pain and has no one to rescue until God get ready to rescue. Not because he can’t do his job, he can do it; and he’s has the intelligent and intellect to do it. That’s why the devil is angery and afraid. Now if you find my grammar and spelling aren’t pleasing. I suggest you pray; slandering won’t put no dent in me. God loves all including me.

  20. Ernie

    Ms. Pryor, I agree with you and others like you. The election and the reelection of Barack Obama, did not in my view come about by accident. Ask yourselves how did this meteor come out of nowhere to become the first AA to hold the highest office in the land. This was the work of someone more powerful that any of us could possibly imagine, (The Master). I believe that we have not seen what God has in the person of this man for us. None of us could have imagine that in our lifetime that this would come to past, but it did, out of nowhere. Support our President because if any of us think that we are going to get someone better we need to stop and think again. We have the supreme court in the next term that our President will be asked to nominate people to this position and his selections will affect us for years to come. His critics no this and that is why they are fighting so hard to defeat him. We must stand for truth and support this man because he is much more than a President to us and our children he is US.

  21. Charles McGee

    Looking at history we see what has been an unending string of events. As Thomas Jefferson said, “We all inherit a government and must live with what we have.” George W. Bush appointed people to various offices and we live with the results. When John F. Kennedy by increments eased us in to Vietnam and started that debacle we all paid the price. I do not see anything special about Barack Obama’s appointments. They are routine events in American government. The world will pay for the destruction of Northern Africa during the Obama Administration, just as it will pay for the incursions in Iraq and Afghanistan during the George W. Bush era.

    I do not accept the notion that Obama’s election represented something special. That the hand of your god has something to do with the event is just more nonsense. My God did not participate in the event. I will be doing all I can to elect Mitt Romney as the next President of the United States. I assume that you will do likewise, based on the person you choose. I contributed money and time to the election of Barack Obama in 2008. If you do not contribute money and time in 2012 he will not be re-elected.

  22. Charles McGee

    I contributed money and worked for the election of Barack Obama in 2008. My commitment was based on my understanding of the political process and what Oprah Winfrey did. But mostly it was his commitment-2007-with regards to Iraq. When Obama did not select a person of peace as Secretary of Defense and allowed Robert Gates to stay I knew that I had been had. As a former member of the U S Army, Infantry, I knew something about that issue. Apart from Iraq, Hillary was a better choice for me. This time I will be supporting my candidate-Mitt Romney-or some other person. Obama was given an opportunity. He failed. You can contribute $2,500 to the Obama campaign and work from sun up to sun set. I like my choice.

  23. Renee

    Hahahaha. Now, I liked this post. Usually, I tend to be a little critical towards some of your politcal pieces. However, I agreed with your post here. I still support the President, but I never assumed he was going to be Superman and change America forever. While I can praise many of his accomplishments as President, I am not blind to the blatant fact President Obama is very much a politican and some policies have done more harm than good on certain social issues.

  24. Ernie

    Brother Charles, my only response to you for choosing to support Romney is; for you to believe that this guy is a better choice than Barack you either have just put your crackpipe down or you just crawled out of a cave. I feel for you.

  25. We should never put all of eggs in one basket in this world, as it is.

    That said, having a POTUS that’s (supposedly) Black, or looks like us means absolutely nothing if they’re not doing anything significant enough to touch all of us in a positive way. As a previous commenter explained, saying: I’ve examined his footprints… says a great deal, in my opine, because when you take an intense look at what the Obama administration has done you have to factor in one third of US history, (as another commenter noted) & the unarguable fact that the ugliness wrapped around the enslavement of our people/ancestors is enmeshed with the ugliness of the foundation the US rests on at this very moment & not one prez has fully considered & addressed that “ugly stench” in God’s nostrils!

    Having the first Black prez (so-called) has provoked an resurgence of supremacist movements synonymous with the KKK which only puts our families at risk while absolutely nothing is being done by the Obama administration to curtail it! Though their hate encompasses Jews, gays, hispanics & Asians we’re still at the top of their hate list because they’ve detected long ago we’re the most vulnerable. If you think they don’t have excess to combat resources, etc. think again. Remember the ugly hate our ancestors were victimized by when they were beaten, maimed, burned & lynched primarily because of their ‘skin color?’ Remember the four little sisters, all under 14 years old, that lost their lives while worshiping in a church in Birmingham, AL due to the KKK fire bombing the church? Are the majority of those in this part of the globe Christians? The last time I checked, there’s no religion that condones the consumption of alcohol, yet how many liquor stores, bars, pubs, clubs, etc. do you see in every town & city in the US? And we wonder why insanity permeates the landscape. It’s called CULTURE!!! Until we become “de-cultured” having a Black prez means NOTHING!

  26. Dr. Christopher Mobley

    Dr. Watkins, Dr. West, Mr. Smiley, and other critics have discounted the hatred/opposition of Congressional Republicans as has been pointed out by others here. What’s never been cleanly articulated in the criticisms of the President is how and where the votes were going to come from to bring about the policies that they wanted. They were never there! Even the policies criticized took blood, sweat, and tears to accomplish. Anything further left didn’t have the support to become law, and that’s before a Supreme Court that could have found “unconstitutional” grounds to limit or invalidate it. Don’t discount the 2012 Supreme Court cases on Health Care Reform as a guide to the possible. It may be why the Administration is increasingly allowing states to create their structures within the broader law for implementation.

    In this era, I’m afraid that this is as good as we can reasonably expect. I’m sure that Barack Obama wanted more as much as we did. The requisite pieces in the media, in Congress, and in the broader American society just aren’t there.

  27. Charles McGee

    As a so-called critic, I understand the process to be that you put something on the table and see how far it will go. What is commonly known as the first 100 days suggests to me that the will was not there for change. That was mentions in an interview with Chris Edley of the transition team.

    Personally, when Obama decided to leave Robert Gates as Secretary of Defense rather than choose another, and that happened out of the gate, before the inauguration, he signaled that Iraqi occupation would remain an aspect of our foreign policy. The occupation was illegal from day one. There were no more than 32 nations in the so-called ‘coalition of the willing’
    dating from August 1990. With the right Secretary of Defense that could have ended on January 22, 2009. That was the signal the world needed. Then there would have been no re-arrangement of North Africa. There are bells Barack Obama in a second term can not un-ring. I will vote for someone other than Obama in 2012. Libya and Egypt get no second shot.

  28. Dr. Christopher Mobley

    And Mitt Romney or any Republican would have behaved differently? Doubtful. And the military would have gone along with a radical shift in the first 100 days? Doubtful. What WE don’t know, but the Bush and Obama administrations do, are the actual templates and other dynamics, political, economic, logistically, and other factors that were the reality. As you suggest, there might have been bells that Barack Obama from day one could not un-ring. I’m just not feeling that anyone, either Democrat or Republican, would have or could have behaved any differently.

  29. Charles McGee

    Dr. Mobley: I am not sure Mitt Romney will be different. What I do know is that i am not satisfied with Barack Obama’s performance so I am willing to take a chance on a new player. That is why we vote every four years, to express our will.

  30. Charles McGee

    Ernie: If I need your feelings I will ask for them. No person with whom you are not personally acquainted deserves to be characterized according to your thinking. I will make sure I contribute the maximum-$2,500-to Mitt Romney. I am capable of doing that. You give yours to Barack Obama, if you like.

  31. Charles McGee

    Culture is the right term.

  32. Brother Charles, I appreciate your concern… However, when I say WE need to be “de-cultured” what I’m referring to is we’ve been coerced away from our original culture based on our inhumane treatment & experiences in this part of the globe. That said, we’ve been led into alcohol, drug, tobacco and red meat consumption which has caused many of us to have a different “set of values.” Through manifesting said values over time, we’ve come to exemplify & embrace a different “culture.” In other words, our diet’s determine our “values” and through repetitious manifestation of those values over time, they (values) evolve into what we know as “culture” (U are what u eat). Imagine if we would all stop consuming alcohol and refrain from eating pork, how different we would be, as a people. WE’D be even closer if all of us refrained from consuming red meat in it’s entirety and adopted a vegetarian or vegan diet. If we’d follow either of the foregoing recipes in 6 months WE would be much closer to being on the same page, as opposed to where we’re at today. Therefore, WE need to be “de-cultured” from the wicked, ugly culture forced upon us over time. Unfortunately, at this stage in the game we can be deemed as a people that are “culturally confused.”

  33. Udosed

    Dr. Edwin L. Coleman, II, i respectfully submit to you that Prez Obama took his teleprompter to speak to a 6th grade class. He makes an excellent reader and a great role model for the 6th grade reading class.

  34. Udosed

    Dr. Edwin L. Coleman, II,
    I respectfully submit to you that Prez Obama took his teleprompter to speak to a 6th grade class. He makes an excellent reader and a great role model for the 6th grade reading class.

  35. What pisses me off is black people waited until Obama took office before they could find enough courage to speak up. Where were their voices as they watched Bush and his administration rape and rob this country blind. No black voices was heard but the the exception of a few who protested the “Weapons of Mass Destruction” or the “housing fiasco”, which not only hit black neighborhoods hardest and destroyed more black lives than ever since the days of slavery. Now that you’ve found the courage to finally speak up to criticize the “Commander In Chief”, why is it you never seem to acknowledge accomplishments which number in the hundreds. Why is it you didn’t demand the same things from Bush who created this mess that you are demanding of Obama. They say black people are guiltier than any other group of people when it comes to playing the game of “Crabs in the barrel”, and frankly I’m inclined to agree. Have you considered that perhaps Obama will be able to do things in a second term that isn’t afforded to him in his first. It took eight years for Bush to get us into this mess and there’s no magic wand to get us out of it. A fool acts before he thinks but a wise man weighs all the options then acts. Besides if not Obama what or who will serve the black community in the future? It’s evident that the Republican and Independent Parties have no love for black people so who you gonna choose is the ultimate question. Truth is there’s nothing more dangerous in the black community than an educated fool. In the future I hope black people’s focus will be not so much on material things but, on things which affect their everyday lives no matter who sits in the White House whether they be black or white.

  36. I said, as loudly as I could, to whomever would listen, Obama is more aligned with corporations and Republicans than he is aligned with middle classes and poor citizens. I urged family members and classmates to look at his voting record on credit card companies and setting a ceiling on interest rates: In both cases Obama, one of a couple of democrats to side with Republicans, voted against policy that would have benefited struggling families. This was before he became president. That should have been enough to at least cause pause and further investigation of his voting record. It seemed, however, as though many blacks were only interested in seeing the first black person elected president of the United States.

    To be fair, Obama has many accomplishments he can be proud of, as he focuses on his legacy. But I fault him for lacking courage–courage to address some of the most oppressive policies that harm mostly poor communities populated by people of color. I know the argument: He is NOT the black president but THE president of the United States, and therefore cannot be concerned with issues that affect only a small segment of America. The problem is that he seems unwilling to even make the argument for black issues, for fear of being labeled The Black President.” I would rather he be a one term president that fought vigorously for policies that improved the lives of ALL working class and poor people than a president who did just enough to secure re-election.

    As black people, WE should be proud that a black man was elected to the highest office in the land. WE should not, however, hold him to a different standard than we hold white presidents to. Open criticism, debate and opposition are the hallmark of a healthy and vibrant democracy that allow us to make informed decisions. We can disagree, respectfully.

  37. Udosed

    Two Wrongs (and in this case a whole bunch of wrongs) don’t make a right, never has never will

  38. People, keep perspective. President Obama is only one person. Neither Obama nor anyone else can change overnight all the disparities and related racial issues affecting this country. Black people have indirectly benefitted from the fact that a black man (with his black family) was elected to the highest office in this country. It might be easier for other progressive blacks across the country to get elected now that white people have learned Obama will not/cannot dismantle all their white/male privileges just because he has a black/brown face. Obama’s second term may be better for all people (in terms of getting more cooperation from other public officials) since whites seem now to generally feel less threatened by Obama. Republicans and Democrats are problematic, so a third major political party could make a difference in this country. Yes, I am disappointed in Obama in some ways but he is no worse than all previous presidents. I realize Obama is under tremendous pressures, including threats to his life. We as black people need to stop directing petty criticism at Obama — only critiques of substantial issues are warranted. Let’s keep in mind that no one can please everyone, at all times.

  39. Renelda Moorehead

    Nothing gets folks going like a response to a POTUS blog. I read through them all. I have highly honed instinct. In 2008 my instinct told me to not vote.
    For 2012 my instinct reverberates, and loudly, not to vote. There is no one worthy of my precious vote. MY Lord! How I wish we had a candidate of the people, by the people and FOR THE PEEPS. White POTUS take care of their white constituents first. What about Obama? I rest my case, as succinct
    as it is.

  40. Dr. Christopher Mobley

    Then what is the point of commenting? How does not voting help anyone? What, within the realm of reality, would or could qualify as earning “your precious vote”? It sounds like a human impossibility, as you just cannot factor out anything that you don’t like and becomes an eliminator. By your reckoning it appears that cannot occur. I’m not quite sure what “your case” could possibly be.

  41. Someone here wrote: “Truth is there’s nothing more dangerous in the black community than an educated fool.” THAT’S A STEREOTYPE that racists implanted in the black community since slavery. This mentality fits well with why white slave owners who didn’t allow blacks to read. Should we only value so- called “street smart” blacks — who may be good at pulling off the major hustle, but miss learning about the fine details of life? College-educated blacks are not the problem. We as people need a balance of book smarts and common sense.

    To the person who wrote here that Dr Boyce envied the black comedians who are in Obama’s inner circle when he (Boyce who has a PhD) is not included. Maybe — but one also has to wonder why so many black professionals in the Obama Administration have left their jobs or had to resign. Does Obama hold them to a higher standard than his white staff — A previous WH Social Secretary (black woman) was forced to resign after a major incident but we don’t know if major white staff/CIA security also paid a price for the security breach. Hillary Clinton is still his Secretary of State even though she implied that Obama might get assassinated — she said this when they were competitors mid-way during the campaign.

    If we find out Obama can’t tolerate black professionals making human mistakes and can’t handle being around black people who challenge his thinking, then that’s something we need to be aware of moving forward. But let’s not expect a miracle from Obama. He has been hit from all sides with unrealistic expectations.

    The person who asked where were the black critics when Bush was destroying the country is exactly right. So while Dr. Boyce has a right to criticize President Obama, other people have a right to challenge blacks who we think are going overboard in criticizing the first black president.

  42. Renelda Moorehead

    @Dr.Chris Mobley–Not voting is an action, like not getting up from a white lunch counter, or not sitting in the back of the bus during segregation. I am
    rebelling against a president I believe is not doing nearly enough for the black poor. If not him, then who? History is made by BOLD MOVES. Is
    Obama being careful or does he just NOT CARE about his poor black brothers and sisters? It seems he falshes his winning smile for the black folks who give money to his campaign. How ordinary. This
    mediocre, false black president is tiring. By the way, I wonder which black fraternity this black president is a member of? And like most of you who post
    on this blog, Obama does not have a black person’s sense of humor. Our
    black culture has depended on religion and a well-developed sense of humor to sustain and propel us in this troubled land. Where is Obama’s religion,
    and where is his sense of humor; and where is yours, oh wondrous black
    professional ?. I think you have all become whiticized. So sad.

  43. Dr. Christopher Mobley

    It you want to guarantee Republican dominance and feel better about yourselves, go right ahead. Boehner, Cantor, etc. won’t give a damn about your being “blacker than black”, what church you’re going to, or anything else. If you think this is a “troubled land” now, let them spend the next four years consolidating what they’re setting up. That’s all I’m saying.

  44. BlackBeauty

    @Renelda Moorehead,

    Not voting is a foolish action.
    It will resolve nothing, and in fact push us back.
    The president is supposed to represent ALL of the people! Poor whites, blacks and other Americans, poor, rich or middle class!
    Your theory is simply not responsible, and I certainly hope no one will follow your foolishness~

    @Dr. Christopher Mobley,
    “It you want to guarantee Republican dominance and feel better about yourselves, go right ahead. Boehner, Cantor, etc. won’t give a damn about your being “blacker than black”, what church you’re going to, or anything else. If you think this is a “troubled land” now, let them spend the next four years consolidating what they’re setting up. That’s all I’m saying.”

    Well, you said a mouth-full. Keep talking!

  45. The Black Vote Doesn't Add Up to red white & blue Policies!!

    Pursuant to my view of the whole enchilada, in lew of the political design of this “system” Obama will more than likely be stonewalled in his second term, just as such is the case this time around. The “bet” is on the young/hip hop generation, just as it was in Nov 2008. In other words, if he can get their support like he did in 08′ he’ll be in. Unfortunately, the downside remains to be a stagnant congressional body of racist that will not adhere to any of his policies until they revise them so that they’ll work to preserve the socioeconomic well being of the “dominant culture.” That said, Obama will continue 2 b nothing other than a black face on a white agenda.

    Our only way out of our dilemma is to unite & move forward on our own vertical agenda for the future of our children, because as it stands up to this day their future is in the hands of a corrupt, diabolical, freakish, precarious & intoxicated system that’s bent on “blocking” the progress of dark skinned ppl, no matter how young or how old. Only WE can bring the change that we need, not Obama or the US’s corrupt politics., which in essence is “politics as usual.” Again, whether Obama wins or looses the same political machine will remain in-sync with the same race based polices. It’s about skin color in the US & as I mentioned 3 years ago, “if Obama was Michelle’s complexion he wouldn’t have got in.”

    We need to stand up, for our children’s future because if we don’t the white dominant society will persist in accepting those of us that they like and rejecting those of us that they fear!!! That’s the way it’s been, it’s the way it is & it must change! Only we can bring about that change! We should have learned some time ago that as long as we continue to follow “ugly behavior” the results will be along the same lines. Only we can add beauty to our lives and the lives of our children, because “ugliness” hasn’t done it & will never do it!

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