Senator Barack Obama is many things. He is a skilled orator, a visionary with star power, and a brilliant politician and skillful strategist. However, he is not angry, and that is what scares you.
The Angry Black Man is America’s unnamed, generically black-faced boogeyman. We see him on the evening news– that menacing dark face that seems devoid of care or concern. We see him on athletic fields, ferocious and violent in his quest for physical superiority. And we see him on the streets, the weight of years of malevolent thoughts crushing his dreams and aspirations until, predictably, he explodes in mindless rage, giving you the license you crave to lock him up, discard him, and remove him from your civilized society. As fearful as you may be of the Angry Black Man, you are most comfortable with him, because society nods its collective head in agreement as you put him safely away from your wives and children. Yes, the Angry Black Man is the perpetual threat to your way of life, and for five-hundred years you have continued to justify your disdain for him.
Barack Obama is not an Angry Black Man, and you have become desperate in your attempts to drive him there. America knows that Minister Farakkhan is the angriest Angry Black Man of all, but try as you might, you could not link Barack Obama to him in any sensible way. Then you found what appeared to be your trump card, Jeremiah Wright. Oh, in a YouTube world, he personified anger as no other could. So you trotted him out on your stage, inviting him to speak for no compelling reason, at least to the layman. But you knew that if you gave him a chance, he would show that anger one more time. We can ignore the fact that many Black men of his generation are disappointed in this land of milk and honey, and that Black ministers near and far explode in similar fashion each Sunday morning. Jeremiah Wright was your connection, and you threw him in Barack Obama’s face with a vengeance.
But Barack Obama is not an Angry Black Man, so his reaction was not what you expected. Why, you challenged his church! He had to lose his cool, didn’t he? No, he didn’t, and when he reacted with calm, with reason, and with eloquence, you became unnerved. You attempted to link him with the supposed religion of a father he barely knew. You posted photos with vague and misleading (often fictional) anecdotes. Even now you are circulating the most ludicrous story of all, alleging that the Senator has been planted by your other convenient boogeymen– Al Queda. We know that there is no low that you will not dig under, but this seems absurd even for politics. Sadly, however, it doesn’t end, because when you realized nothing else was working, you attacked the one thing that surely would anger even the most stoic of Black men. You attacked his wife.
But Barack Obama is not an Angry Black Man, and he is also not an ignorant Black Man. He saw your intent long before you fully realized it, and steeled himself against your nonsense. He warned you, simply and without vitriol, to leave his wife alone. And that was that. Barack Obama knows that an Angry Black Man not only cannot stand in front of America, but he cannot even stand with America. You would cast him aside in abject horror, your women and children cowering in make-believe fear as you, the Hero, leap grandly forward to protect them from the boogeyman you’ve warned them about for so long. That is what you are so desperately waiting for, praying for, begging for before November. So you cast mindless dispersions, initiate unsubstantiated rumors, and rekindle decades of illogical racial fears. Each claim is more outlandish, more outrageous, more ridiculous than the previous, but that doesn’t matter, because contrary to what many people think, you are not employing Hillary Clinton’s Kitchen Sink theory. You know that your claims lack substance, and that you and others are simply playing a game of political fish stories, where decorum, morality, and basic decency are, at best, subject to interpretation. You are not really concerned that the unlearned and easily misled among you will be swayed by these tall tales. No, your objective, pure and simple, is to make him mad. You need him snarling and agitated, eyes bloodshot and bulging– the very essence of your boogeyman.
But Barack Obama is not an Angry Black Man, and that is what really scares you.