Saturday, October 25, 2008

Liberal tendencies

I must have more liberal blood in me than I thought. I'm feeling guilty about something that is not my fault, and I'm going to try to wash away the guilt by doing something for someone who might not deserve it, probably doesn't need it, and certainly has never asked me to do it. I'm going to vote for Barack Obama.
See, yesterday I was sitting in a store talking to an older man who brought up in conversation that he simply couldn't imagine a N* as president. Then he looked at me from under his brows and said, "I probably shouldn't have said that," meaning, "You are I know the way things really are."
He shouldn't have said it. I felt uncomfortable, the same way I felt once in high school, when a young woman with mental problems told a dirty joke that she couldn't possibly have understood (kind of a funny joke, though). I felt put upon and faintly besmirched.
I decided that, my response to the man's racism would be to vote for Obama. But that's nuts, don't you see? That's not logical. I'm doing something that I'm not sure is right simply because an old man opened his tangled mind to me. I'm trying to correct the balance of the universe by doing something that is illogical, as if I were, by voting for Obama, putting a thumb on the cosmic scale and tipping things back into order. I'm also trying, I think, to get rid of the guilt I feel because I didn't haul off and smack the old guy in the chops then and there.
What I am going to do is the day after the election drop by where he hangs out and gloat. Inwardly, because I'm a liberal now.

1 comment:

bekkieann said...

It makes me incredibly sad after all our county has gone through in the name of race relations that such attitudes remain so firmly entrenched. I would even feel better if it were only the older generation, but it's not. This election season has brought out such overt racism as we haven't seen in decades.

Of course I'm glad to hear you are voting for Obama as I think he is the best man for the job. But somehow I wish the labels could be put aside after the election. Our country faces dire troubles. Our president will have difficult challenges.

But it is the American way that conflicts continue even after elections. None of us likes to lose, and the blame, justifications, recriminations, and accusations go on long afterward. In this case, race is sure to be a part of this - sadly.