The single most common current explanation for a possible Obama loss posited today by the left is that America is filled with racists. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review political reporter Selena Zito uses this charge to the hilt in a September 21 opinion piece on union members voting McCain. Naturally, the only reason Zito can come up with for this phenomenon is because these McCain supporting union members are wild-eyed racists. Yet, there are no statistics, no interviews with racists, no proof presented in this story other than the claims of professors and Obama supporters that it’s a true assessment.
This is an entirely common occurrence with these sorts of stories, too. We get all sorts of tongue clucking "experts" assuring us that anyone who votes for John McCain is a racist yet no proof other than the bald faced claims of those who merely assert the point as fact.
The Trib-Review piece starts with former AFL-CIO union head Joe O'Connell standing for John McCain at a recent Youngstown, Ohio McCain rally.
"I am a lifelong Democrat, an intelligent Democrat, who is supporting John McCain," O'Connell said last week as a crowd of 7,000 waved "Another Democrat for John McCain" signs and roared its approval.
Zito then follows that with current AFL-CIO official Bill George worried that his members are not "educated" enough to vote Obama and pledging that he'll "educate" them to turn out the vote. (With that I am struck amused that this union leader imagines his own former leader is suddenly "uneducated.")
But, it is his reason why his fellows are not voting Obama aside from "education" that concerns us all.
George narrows the problem down to race. "There is no question, earlier in the primary campaign the racial issue was there, just like the gender issue was with Hillary for some unions," he says.
"We in America like to think we don't have any hang-ups or stereotypes. But because of our history and because of a lot of industrial psychology controlling the masses, people have innate prejudices."
George says that the mind-set of some people in the labor movement regarding race is no different than it is in church groups, or in the Republican Party.
So, this George fellow just asserted that Churches, Republicans and "some" labor union members are all racists? Does he offer any proof, any stats, any personal stories -- even anecdotal -- to prove this claim?
Well, no. And neither does Zito. All in this story just state that overarching racism as fact.
Zito quotes Joe Rugola, another union head in Ohio, as agreeing that there is "a problem with race and his members." But he also feels that McCain appeals to union members because of a "cultural connection." In other words, they are racists. She then finds more people to claim that it's all about racism.
Frank Stricker, a history professor at California State University and a union expert, says race is a key to what alienates segments of the labor movement, especially in Ohio and west of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania.
And we find the ever present Larry Sabato that, despite his track record of leftward leaning analysis, finds his way into so many of these stories. He claims that you'd be "naive" not to think it's all about racism.
University of Virginia professor Larry Sabato is blunter: "There's no question that race is at the heart of Obama's problem with blue-collar white union members. You'd have to be pretty naive to think otherwise."
And yet... and yet, we get no proof in this article. Just multiple claims and bald assertions.
Tucked away at the bottom of the article, though, is one statistic. "Sabato says that a third or more union members consistently vote Republican for president, despite their union leaders' recommendations." OK, that is all well and good. But why do we assume that it's all because of racism? We are offered no reason other than being called "naive" if we don't believe it.
It all amounts to an almost religious belief. Despite that we've had many black governors, lieutentant governors, and thousands of blacks voted into office, despite that top business leaders, entertainers and sports figures are black, we are expected to just believe that whites won't vote for Obama because he's black. Even despite that Republicans were in heavy support of Colin Powell to run for president on the GOP ticket several years back.
The most common "reason" we are given to suggest that whites are all racists is the so-called "Bradley effect" (also called the Wilder effect). This was the "effect" supposedly documented when polls gave candidate Tom Bradley the edge when running for governor of California in 1982. However, he ended up losing the race. The claim became accepted that the polls were right, people did say that they were going to vote for Bradley, but once in the booth they couldn't vote for Bradley because he was black. Secret racism made Bradley lose. This is what liberals claim America is like. The theory is far from proven, of course, but it serves to verify the prejudice that liberals have about America.
But, I'd like to suggest something that many aren't considering in this whole discussion. It should be taken for granted that the largest bulk of Republicans won't vote for Obama not because he's a black man, but because he's a Democrat. After all, why even consider oneself a Republican if one so easily votes for Democrats?
That being a general truth, aren't we left with the bulk of the supposedly racist, non Obama voting whites being in the Democrat Party? After all, these Democrats are the largest pool of possible Obama voters, aren't they? This means that white, guilt laden liberals are claiming that their own party are the racists!
They are calling themselves racists. I find that fascinating.