The White Guilt of American Elections

Subtle racism has found its way to the American political scene in the final days before Americans head to the ballots to vote on who should run their country for the next four years. The issues both candidates stand for are known. Conservative versus liberal, right wing vs left wing, grosso modo. However, with elections being less than 48 hours away, the talk isn’t centered around the core issues anymore.

The American elections are now all about demographics: who’s voting for who. Because demographic talk is important to see how the country might vote on November 6th.

Pro-Obama analysts underplay the shift in numbers from 2008 to 2012 as something that can be compensated for on election day. Pro-Romney analysts extrapolate the shift in numbers to claim a premature victory they desperately seek. But what is the demographic talk they speak of?

It is that of Catholic and Protestant voters. It is that of independent voters. It is that of women. And do you know what’s the common thing among all those demographics that are up for grabs still?

They’re all white. Or caucasian, whichever term is more politically correct.

In the dying minutes before Americans choose, the tactic is to bring out the colonial white guilt that hasn’t died down since America’s old days. Bringing out the guilt happens even in subtle comedy that, when not read into, is another funny gimmick to make people laugh. However, after a careful minute of reflection, a seemingly harmless skit holds a deeper meaning than it presumably intends to.

For struggling campaigns, the play on the emotional cords of voters is essential to rally them up come election time. The emotional cord for white American voters is the issue of racism. If you don’t vote for this candidate, then you are subtly racist. The fear from the label pushes some people to vote against their convictions in order not to fall into the stereotype.

And this is the inherent hypocrisy of the American system.

More than 90% of African American voters are voting for Obama come election day. Are they accused of racism? No. How many of those voters are more inclined to vote for Obama because of the color of his skin? How many are voting for him based on their convictions and political stance? Both questions are quite irrelevant because they don’t apply here. They apply to “others.”

On the other hand, caucasian Americans do not have the prerogative to vote for their convictions guilt-free. It’s because they weren’t the segment of American society that was marginalized for years and years. But does the fact that African Americans had a very tough phase in their history warrant the rhetoric that has sunk to the level it’s at today?

And we’re not even going into the baggage that voting for one candidate over the other carries: xenophobe, homophobe, female-phobe, anything-phobe.

The bottom line is: it’s not racism and you’re not a racist when you’re voting for someone not because of the color of his skin but because of what he stands for. It’s not racism and you’re not  a racist if you haven’t really thought about a candidate’s skin color until now. Come election day, everyone – regardless of their skin color – should vote to who they believe can get their country in the right direction. The “white result” of 2008 has shown that the majority of Americans don’t care about a candidate’s skin color. So for those who voted to one candidate in order to prove they weren’t racist in 2008, mission accomplished, no need to feel guilty if you cast an opposite ballot this time around. One thing to be said though is shame on media that would revert to such cheap tactics in order to get their preferred candidate a boost.

 

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Lebanon’s Litani River Turns White

First we had the Beirut River turning red.

Now it’s the Litani’s time to turn white. It seems Lebanese rivers are drawing Lebanon’s flag. We still need one to turn green and it’s a go. I wonder, what substances can we pour into our water to achieve that color?

While the incident with the Litani did not affect the whole river, the cause has been said to be either the flow of calcified water into the river or some nearby factory throwing in its waste.

Either way, it’s highly likely that we’ll never know what caused this. One thing is certain – Lebanon now has another reason, apart from our snowy mountains, for its name.

White iPhone 4 Available For Order

It seemed to many that the white iPhone 4 would never happen. But apparently, it’s a certainty now.

The U.K’s 3 Online Store had the white iPhone 4 available, starting April 20th.

You can check out the listing here.

The white iPhone 4 was supposed to launch alongside the black one in June 2010, but unforseen production complications saw Apple postponing the release many times until it looked like they buried the product.

Tweets around February re-sparked the interest in this iPhone as many Apple insiders and employees tweeted about how “beautiful” it was.

Apple had confirmed last week that the white iPhone would see a late April release date and it looks like it’s now set for the 20th.

So for those still holding out for a white iPhone 4, your time has come.

Crash – Movie Review

Crash is a rare cinematic event. It is a highly undercut movie, in the sense that almost everyone thinks it did not deserve the awards it got. It’s also an underrated movie, in the sense that not many people truly appreciate its genius.

Set over a period of 36 hours in post 9/11 Los Angeles, Crash is literally a snapshot in the lives of a few people that inhabit the city. A racist white cop who disgusts his partner, an African-American TV director and his wife, a Persian store-owner inept with English, a white suburban wife, whose idea of a perfect life is one that doesn’t involve much of the different other, and her DA Husband, two car-jackers, two racially different investigators who happen to be lovers and a Mexican locksmith trying to sustain his wife and daughter.

Crash examines the cultural crash that takes place when all these characters come together. It intelligently examines the fear and bigotry that take place when we don’t understand what the other is dealing with. It shows how everyone is intolerant at points, how no one is immune to violence that, at some points, can change lives drastically.

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