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November 27, 2007

Choosing a president

A Star reporter asks, “Are black women more likely to vote for Clinton, due to gender, or for Obama, due to race?” (11/20, FYI, “Decisions at hand; The first black president? The first woman? We asked black women which milestone means the most”).

I suppose it is inevitable that we ask such questions. But no one has asked me about my preference based on my being a white male.

Is it a foregone conclusion that I will vote for a white male? Wouldn’t it be nice if we had moved beyond such thinking by 2007? Don’t these assumptions only fuel the racial mindsets that divide us?

OK, call me naïve. I just don’t want to believe that my race and gender determine how I cast my vote. My vote goes not to the one who is on “my team,” but to the one who will best serve all the people of my country.

William Salyer
North Kansas City

Comments

solomon

Engineer,
All people have bias and preferences. The letter writer seems to think they don't. My original post concerned the fact that the media announced Brooks would get the dlack vote. My point went directlly to the media not saying that there are people who would vote against him because he is black, which I personally believe and which you know to be true. I never called KC a racist town nor said that Funkhouser won because whites flocked to him. I was immediatly attacked by GCYL ( which she/he enjoys doing) for my "mindset" while totally ignoring the point of my post and then the a entire direction changed.

Everyone who lives in America knows that race relations have improved since the sixties, the fact that things like racial covenants (JC Nichols true legacy to America) no longer exist is a perfect example. But I've been in too many places in my life where whites feel comfortable commenting on blacks because there were none in the room to believe racism is a footnote in our history.

Engineer

Solomon
It's not clear to me whether you are trying to make a point or are just expressing your views. Are there members of all ethnic groups who have racist sentiments? This seems very probable. Are there people of all genders whose voted may be influenced by gender considerations? In my opinion this is highly likely. However, through my rather long lifetime, whites have become less and less prejudiced in these matters. So far as I can see, the changes made have been mostly for the better. So, once again, what is your point?

solomon

Chris40,
Though I do not consider any of my friends racists I certainly have encountered a number along lifes path.

Maybe I'm wrong , who knows for sure? The many racist websites on the internet probably never get any hits.

America is not filled with racist, but they are very much in our midst.

Chris40

Let's just say that you think America is a far more racist place than I do. Maybe I just don't hang around a lot of racists, so I don't see it as much. Who knows. We tend to judge the world through what he see with our own eyes, day in a day out.

solomon

I do not contend that Brooks lost to Funkhouser because of race. I merely pointed out what they media never said, that there are white people who would not vote for Brooks because of his race.

C'mon Chris40, are you saying you don't know any white people who dislike blacks and would never vote for one?

And you are right, there probably are more blacks who voted for "their own" than whites who based their Funk votes on race. But they were also voting for someone that they knew through years of working in their community.

Chris40

Solo,

I read your first post at the very bottom as an assertion that the main reason Brooks lost was because there was a block of voters who refused to vote for a black man. I don't think I'm misreading your post or being unfair.

I just don't think it's true. Moreover, Cleaver seems to refute it. And when he wins again in 2008, it will make your argument even less convincing.

solomon

"never was it mentioned in the media that there were people who would"....

Thats how that sentence should have read.(darn backspace key)

solomon

Chris40,
Long time no haggle....

I said nowhere here that KC is racist, hates blacks, or that is why Alvins Brooks lost because of that racism. I said there are whites who would let that affect their choice. I also said there are people who will not vote for Obama because of his race. It is not the decision of a well rounded individual, but lets face it, we are not a country entirely populated by well rounded individuals.

My statement also addressed that the media reported blacks would strongly support Brooks because he is black. The fact that he has been a fixture in this town for years was second chair in the medias opinion. Never was it mentioned there were people who would vote for our current mayor because they don't like blacks.

So Chris40, unless all the people you know who don't like blacks and all the people BuddyT knows who don't like blacks and all the people i know who don't like blacks don't really exist, I stand by my original post, which does not say what you've accused me of saying.

Chris40

"Race and gender play a part in elections just as in most things in America. Case in point: It was constantly mentioned that Alvin Brooks would receive the black vote in the mayorial election...Are we to believe that there is not a block of voters who voted for Funkhouser because he wasn't black?"

Solo,
But doesn't Emmanual Cleaver's election as mayor and now as U.S. Representative kind of refute your point that KC is racist place that hates blacks?

I can think of at least two reasons why voters might not have voted for Brooks: He's very liberal and he's very old. He seems like a nice guy, I admit, but it's absurd to suggest that the only reason why people didn't vote for him was racism.

And maybe voters just preferred Funk. He seems like a no nonsense guy, and, as we saw in his dealings with La Raza, he doesn't bend over when threatened by outside pressure groups.

This is just a thought: it seems entirely possible to me that Brooks received far more votes from blacks merely because he is black, than he lost from racist whites. I can't prove this obviously, but it's a gut feeling on my part.

solomon

Well I guess I was correct, if you answered my questions directly you'd have to agree with me. So you won't answer.

BTW, I did not call you a fool. You accepted it as a title.

solomon

You're right GCYL, I did not like your answer because it did not answer my questions. My question was not about your and Michaels voting habits, nor am I asking you to prove anything. Just a simple yes or no to both questions. I never implied everyone votes based on race or gender, its nice to know you, Michael and I all agree that we don't. But if you would please, just answer my questions yes or no.

Now I'll patiently await your wordy refusal to do so.

GCYL

“Gcyl, I asked you two direct questions and as usual you answered neither.” - solomon

As usual you didn’t like the answer so you ignored it.

“Do you believe there are no whites who voted for Funkhouser because the other choice was black? Do you believe that if Obama was the candidate there are no whites who would cast votes against him because of his race?” - solomon

“Sadly it wouldn’t make a difference if there were 30 million other voters with our opinion. Because, to some, it will always be about the racial mindsets that divide us. And, I’d be required to prove that all 30 million and two of us voters didn’t use skin color as the only reason for voting/not voting for a candidate.” – me

To vague for you? I fear for your currently agitated hyper sensitivity but, oh well, your two questions are meaningless strawmen. They’re a waste of space and time. You want me to prove that no one voted on skin color only. No, I want you to prove that everyone voted on skin color only. Yes, I said everyone. Since you’re having such a hissy fit over two of us clearly stating we don’t vote based only on skin color, I’m upping your meaningless strawmen and telling you to prove to us that everyone votes based on skin color.

In the meantime us “fools” will continue on with our belief that our efforts are making our society better.

solomon

And once again a straight answer is beyond your abilities. I asked you two questions that went directly to my first post of this thread and while you disputed me you have not disputed my point.

Could it be that if you answered them honestly without the ridiculous stage directions you so uncleverly throw in you would have to agree with me?

GCYL

“if you don't realize race and gender bias is out there you are a fool.” - solomon

As you can see Gary, I’m going with hyper sensitivity. Has anyone denied continued race and gender bias? No. But apparently it rules the lives of some while becoming a footnote in history for others. I’ll let you re-read the thread to figure out how we got here. In the mean time I’ll re-read the thread and try to figure out how I “twisted words” and became a “fool” while agreeing with William Salyer and Engineer.

solomon

Gcyl, I asked you two direct questions and as usual you answered neither.

GCYL

“and you disputed it attacking me as an individual without disputing the point.”

[Eye roll]

You point was disputed in William’s letter. Remember? “Is it a foregone conclusion that I will vote for a white male? Wouldn’t it be nice if we had moved beyond such thinking by 2007? Don’t these assumptions only fuel the racial mindsets that divide us?”

High five William, we make two clear disputes to solomon’s opinion. Sadly it wouldn’t make a difference if there were 30 million other voters with our opinion. Because, to some, it will always be about the racial mindsets that divide us. And, I’d be required to prove that all 30 million and two of us voters didn’t use skin color as the only reason for voting/not voting for a candidate.

solomon

GCYL,
I'm glad you enjoy twisting what I say and assigning me to hypersensitivity or whatever, but as I mentioned earlier, if you don't realize race and gender bias is out there you are a fool.

solomon

NoMoreMrNice guy has made comments here repeatedly demeaning to blacks. I mentioned his comment on the zoo and light rail two weeks ago. Just yesterday he made references to thugs, gangbangers, bling fests and ho-chasin. If you go over to the other Star blog there are long threads with comments demeaning to blacks.

If you want to believe that racism is dead and that when people make comments like that they are not being racist keep your head in the sand or wherever else its stuck in.

Some people obviously don't find these comments offensive. I do.

GCYL

We move from a frustrated Cheifs fan venting on the no longer playing, highest paid, the star, the “leader by example” football player to:

“I posed this question yesterday. If someone wrote on this blog that our white women are all sluts” – solomon

So, I’ll pose this question today. Strawman argument or hyper sensitivity?

I’m going with hyper sensitivity. It would explain solomon’s inability to see past “Race and gender play a large part in our society William, maybe your not naive, your just pretending to be ignorant”.

solomon

GCYL,
So you think I'm frustrated either way, huh?

I am not frustrated at all, I merely made the point that race plays a factor in who people vote for, and you disputed it attacking me as an individual without disputing the point.

Go on record right now. Do you believe there are no whites who voted for Funkhouser because the other choice was black? Do you believe that if Obama was the candidate there are no whites who would cast votes against him because of his race?

 
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