Derrick Z. Jackson of the Boston Globe has done it again. Now, usually Z is one of those columnists that is sure every white American is a racist and many of his columns are based on that assumption, but it looks like he is branching out from his normal black/white identity politics angle and adding a new twist to his column. You see, Z has just discovered that whites don't hate only blacks, they hate Muslims too. How inclusive, eh?
Even more ridiculously, Z imagines that white Muslim haters in "red states" are forcing Barack Obama to distance himself from his Muslim background. In fact, according to Z, Islam is the victim of white America's newest "red scare" and Obama is feeling the heat because of that undue hatred. It all means we are "Holding Muslims at arm's length" to Derrick Z. Jackson.
I wonder where Z was on 9/11?
Anyway, Z's latest Globe column lays into Barack Hussein Obama (yes, Z uses Obama's middle name here) chastising the candidate of change for turning his back on his Muslim heritage. Z is upset that Obama has pushed away Muslim assistance with his campaign and is incensed that Barack has taken pains to refute the Barack-is-a-Muslim line of attack.
I WISH Barack Obama were a Muslim. Better that than having supercilious staffers whisk women in Islamic head scarves out of photo-ops. Better that than telling Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the nation's first Muslim congressman, not to come help Obama in Iowa and North Carolina.
Better that than wooing red states by wobbling before the modern equivalent of the Red Scare. In his year-and-a-half-long run for president, Obama has visited churches and synagogues, but no mosque. This has the musty feel of light-skinned African-Americans passing for white, paranoid over daylight visits from dark-skinned relatives.
"Red Scare"? Again, where was Z on 9/11? Did he miss that little fracas in New York? What "scare" is there in a world wide attack on the west by radical Islam? Hundreds of thousands of people around the world have been murdered by Islamists, Z. How is that just a "scare"?
And, need we remind you Mr. Jackson, that the "Red Scare" itself was no mere pointless jeremaid? Once the Soviet Union fell and its archives came into public scrutiny, it was proven that the Commies had, indeed, infiltrated all levels of the Federal government and had intended to upend our country through sabotage in high places. Presidents from FDR to JFK were surrounded by Soviet agents, so continuing to pretend that the "Red Scare" was merely an artifice for wild-eyed American fascist, rightists to control the country is an idea long shown to be but leftist trope. It was not just paranoia. The Reds really were out to destroy us from within.
Z does cut Barack Hussein Obama some slack. He says it's "understandable" that Obama feels a bit wary about Islam because "Political woodpeckers hammer falsehoods from the right." But, Jackson still feels that Obama is somehow going too far in his desire set his religious record straight.
...Obama's "Fight the Smears" part of his website has some Muslims feeling betrayed by an over-the-top effort to denounce every Obama-is-a-Muslim claim as a "lie" and saying, "Senator Obama has never been a Muslim, was not raised a Muslim, and is a committed Christian." How about something like, "Senator Obama is a Christian who, having lived in the world's largest Muslim country [Indonesia], having traveled in Pakistan and having many Muslim friends, appreciates American pluralism like no other candidate in US history"?
What, exactly, is wrong with a candidate trying to make clear where he stands on something? In fact, this is the ONLY issue that Obama has not nuanced his way through to date. This is the only issue that Obama has stood firm on. The man does not want to be considered a Muslim. PERIOD!
Of course, it doesn't seem to matter to Derrick Z. Jackson that there is not one shred of evidence that Obama ever really embraced his Father's religion. I have to stick up for Barack on this one. All evidence says that he was an indifferent student of Islam as a child and once he turned away from Islam he never really looked back, embracing Christianity instead. Now, one can doubt Obama's sincerity on any religion, of course. It is easy to imagine that Obama only turned to Christianity to help along his political ambitions... but who can truly say what's in a man's heart?
The facts, the evidence, the history, though, say that Barack Obama never seriously considered accepting Islam into his life. So, for columnists like Z to get all upset that Obama has insisted that people understand where he stands on religion is a bit contrived to say the least.
But, Jackson's real message here is not Obama. He may be a bit miffed at him, yes, but Jackson's main point is that we eeeevil Americans are too mean to Muslims.
A lot of Muslims are waiting because, seven years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, an undercurrent of suspicion remains. In the 2007 Pew survey, a third of Muslim Americans said that within the last year, they had either been treated with suspicion, called offensive names, profiled by police, or even attacked. Kaleem, a graduate of MIT, said he sometimes is asked during grant proposals how radical his group is.
Actually, this part is sort of humorous in the sense of Jackson’s lack of introspection. He says that we should get over 9/11 because it was 7 year ago? I see. Well, civil rights was passed 44 years ago and slavery was ended over 140 years ago, yet Mr. Jackson is still all upset over those little things. Can’t you just get over it, Mr. Jackson?
Now, it might help us to get over it and to feel that American Muslims belong standing beside the rest of us if Muslims in America would speak out loudly and continuously against their radical brethren. But all too often they remain silent against the radicalism of their own as they point fingers at Americans. It’s a bit hard for us to get over it when it doesn’t seem like too many of them even feel that their fellows did anything wrong that fateful day.
In any case, what we have here is just one more excuse for Derrick Z. Jackson to inform us all that white Americans are racists.
(Photo credit: Boston.com)