Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Victor Davis Hanson on Barack Obama's MegaProblem

This is from NRO Thursday, March 20, 2008

Obama's Mega-problem by Victor Davis Hanson

Whence Obama's problems? It is not that he believes in the venom of Rev. Wright, or that when he says something stupid like a "typical white person" he means to imply a stereotyped distasteful race. He doesn't.

The problem is instead the environment that he heretofore has navigated in — prep school, the Ivy League, the regional identity politics of Chicago, or Illinois liberalism — is hardly representative of his own country. So what he can say among sympathizers and friends will not be excused or contextualized by average others who don't know him and won't give him the latitude he is accustomed to and apparently has counted on.

He and Michelle have no doubt rebuked sympathetic elite white audiences, and by both their presence and purse have let it be known that they consider the Rev. Wright's rhetoric tolerable, but they have no idea that the vast majority of Americans that they heretofore have rarely come into contact with are a far different audience, and find the Obamas both more privileged than themselves and undeserving of any more of a pass than any others.

The irony is that like proverbial rarified whites, who have voiced racialist remarks beyond the club, and who have rightly caught hell for the perceived bias, the Obamas suffer from that same blinkered existence and narrow associations that make the extreme seem accustomed and normal.

When he praises Rev. Wright he sounds like he is from Mars — but hasn't a clue that he does. And so like a deer in the headlights Obama keeps waiting for a black precinct captain or a Columbia professor to come to the rescue and explain — ever more clueless that even if they did, it wouldn't matter a bit.

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