Does Obama Need To "Man Up"?

Shaft could never be elected president.

And if you go down the list of all the activist firebrands who have championed our causes for decades, there are very, very few who would even come close to fitting the bill.

There is a reason why Jackie Robinson integrated baseball, the same reason why Sidney Poitier was the first moneymaking leading black man – because they were “safe” black men with almost superhuman levels of emotional self control. However much we might want to believe that America has learned to accept its diversity, refusing to see what is right before our eyes is foolhardy, to say the least.

But a lot of people out here, a lot of black people, in fact, see Obama’s appealing nature, his tendency to turn the other cheek when he is attacked, and his willingness to concede when he is wrong as weaknesses.

Does Ken Chenault kick ass and take names at American Express?

Hell no.

He does what every other chief executive officer does - he works through the proper channels. Which is what Obama will be doing if he gets elected.

Let’s face it - the "O-Man" is a professional waffler - from his level of expertise, it looks like he's been wavering between "almost" and "maybe "his whole life.

And he can have a tendency to overthink things, as if we are a captive audience like his students used to be.

But if you add up all the things that are wrong with him, they still pale in comparison to all that's right. I don't care all that much about his policies, because I know as well as everyone else does that Americans won't go for anything too far from the middle of the road, no matter how good a salesman the president is.

What I care about is our young black boys - my vote will be cast for Obama so they can get to see this brown faced man in his ever present blue suit behind that White House podium, or when he is crossing the East Lawn to get into the White House helicopter, or when he is huddled with the rest of the world leaders at a G-8 conference - because the reality is, too many of our young boys get the majority of their info from TV, where Shaq and Kobe and McNabb and T.O. dominate the airwaves. Where rappers posture, swagger, and stick out their chests at unseen enemies.

And where you can still see Shaft late at night on the classic movie channels.

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Kit (Keep It Trill) said...

Several black blogs I've been too are expressing the same thing the past few days. Too much is adding up, FISA, the oil drilling, reparations, and a lot of other stuff you can read about at

Still, he's the best choice we have between the two candidates, but his right of center tactics to win is disturbing. One wonders if he'll continue if elected, or push for the changes he alluded to early in the game.

I think he'll at least try; McCain will speed us into the Dark Ages.

Black Political Analysis said...

Don't lose the forest for the trees. What's important to remember is Obama's overall vision getting of Washington to reach a consensus on important issues. This necessitates compromise. What world do you live in where you expect the president to do everything without modifying his views after consultation with Congress? Oh, wait, that's Bush.

Besides, name a presidential candidate in your lifetime who didn't waffle at all and I'll show you a candidate who never became president.

Brown Man said...

The things I have seen emanating from the keyboards of black people (or people who say they are black) this week around the web are beyond disturbing.

I think the old adage "be careful what you ask for - you might get it" aptly sums up the antics from the peanut gallery that I've read these last few days.

I imagine, when the slaves were told that they were free, that a lot of them didn't believe it. Figured it was a trick of some sort.

I would hazard a guess that some of that is going on today - that some of us, who have become conditioned to not believing, are having a hard time getting our own prejudices out of the way in order to see what Obama really has to offer.

I'm not voting based on any kind of logic - I'll be the first to admit it - nothing but the white hot heat of emotion that centers around the theme I have often stated here - the future of America's young black men.

But for those of you who need to pull out your spreadsheet to keep a tally of the policies that each candidate espouses, and how they match up with your own wish list, all I can say is Obama is probably your best bet if you want to really bring this country into the twenty first century.

TomBaker said...

He doesn't need to 'man up' on the issues, he needs to man up on the way McCain has been slapping him around for the past week.
Yesterday's speech was a start, he attacked McCain humorously, but truthfully, without getting all nasty like the other campaign has. And you know what? It was about time

Anonymous said...

I don't count Obama as a waffler I think he is a dealmaker. I have a business and I deal with finding the win win for me and my clients. So when i hear Obama he is talking almost like a businessman. We lose on this one and gain on another.

He doesn't have to man up, he just has to speak with clarity and be definite. People mistake manning up as confrontation when it's really just standing up for yourself.

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