Sunday, January 27, 2008

Black President for the U.S.?

Obama routes Hillary in South Carolina

Does it automatically follow that Obama will win in other state primaries and be nominated as the Democratic Presidential Candidate? Not at all. He might win a few more primaries. But as his challenge to Hillary grows more serious, the Democratic primary voters will ditch Obama and opt for Hillary. In the unlikely eventuality of Obama clinching the Democratic nomination, there will be cause for celebration in the Republican party. The defeat of the Democratic nominee would be certain if Obama is the nominee.

But America not ready for Black President

The blacks constitute only about 10-12% of the American population. But that is not the reason why the U.S. can not have a Black President. While there has been grudging acceptance of civil rights for the Black community, the American Whites are not ready to be led by a Black man , however erudite and capable he might be. The Whites nurture very deep distrust of the Blacks. Even those Whites who are friendly and sympathetic with the Blacks do not accept as equals; their attitude is more of a patronising type, if not outright condescending. The U.S. could , do and did have a Black as the Secretary of State. But that is the highest political position a Black can aspire for, for a long time to come.

Even a Woman President has not happened

If Hillary gets the Democratic nomination ( which appears a near certainty in spite of Obama's initial wins) , she will still have to win over the conservative White males of America before she has a reasonable chance of making it to the Oval Office. The U.S. has never so far had a woman as the Presidential nominee of either of the two parties. Two decades ago, there was a woman on the Democratic Ticket as Vice-Presidential nominee. Less developed countries like India, Sri Lanka, Israel , Pakistan and Argentina have had women as Head of State . Even European Countries have not shied away from having a woman as their Chancellor or Prime Minister. Margaret Thatcher made it in U.K. 25 years back. Germany elected a woman as its Chancellor two years ago. France almost elected a woman as its President. But not the strongest Democracy in the world, the U.S.

No President of Southern European origin either

There have been several actors of Italian origin in Hollywood. But there has been no American president who was of Italian origin. For that matter, no Spanish, Portuguese or Greek either. Dukakis lost in 1988. His Greek origin did contribute to the defeat.

Catholics have seldom won

Except for Kennedy's name , no name comes to my mind when I think of a Catholic as American President. Leave alone people of Latin American or Italian or Spanish origin who are mostly Catholics; even Catholics of Irish or German or French origin have failed to occupy the Presidential Chair.

America is conservative

Contrary to the popular impression in the world, the United States does not take huge risks. Reforms on social issues ( as different from economic issues) , if undertaken, are more as aberrations. The country finds safety in sticking to time-tested positions on many issues. The politicians do not believe in tinkering with the deeply-embedded conditioning. So, it is doubtful that a woman will make it to the Presidential Office. It is impossible that a Black will ever become President. Only WASP, oh sorry, only WASPROM (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant Male) will be accepted as the occupants of the White House.

1 comment:

Jo said...

Hi Neel,

Thx for the link to your blogspot which I saw only today when I logged in after all these days. You are an excellent writer and it was great reading some of the posts I managed to read amidst many interruptions. I too have a blogspot which I haven't updated in a long time but would appreciate your opinions/comments whatever -
I think you are a gr8 blogger so keep going