Barack Obama – Searching his Website for CHANGE: The Civil Rights Issue (Part 1 of 28)

June 10, 2008
Barack Obama and Al Sharpton

Barack Obama and Al Sharpton

I don’t get it. I hear so many people singing the praises of the new political messiah, Barack Obama, but I can’t get a real answer as to why they so desperately want him to be President. Sure, I hear reasons why not to vote for the other guy. People provide amazingly insightful phrases like, “I just think he’s more Presidential” or “I think he’ll take us in the right direction” and, of course, the CHANGE mantra repeated ad nauseam; but, I needed to know what the furor was all about. Since even his supporters could not provide any substantive answers, I decided to go to Barack Obama’s website,, and see for myself what Barack Obama’s platform is and what I could find out about his plans for CHANGE.

My first impression, as I reviewed his “Issues” tab, was that there are a whole lot of issues that he hopes to CHANGE (more than twenty-five, as a mater of fact). I couldn’t help but roll my eyes upon seeing this because, as anyone with even a cursory knowledge of our political system can tell you, 95% of the issues he lists have nothing to do with the office of the Presidency. Instead, they are issues that can only be resolved by our Congress, where Barack Obama served for an entire two years before deciding that he had had enough of that and that running for President would be more fun. But, I’ll play the game and pretend that the President is a dictator and can magically affect all of these CHANGES. At least I could have a better idea of what he might or might not veto if he were to be presented with this nation’s (and some would say the world’s) highest position.

I originally was going to tackle all of this in one article; but, with twenty-eight different issues, I decided to limit each article to just one item. In fact, I have created a whole category for them (Barack Obama Website Series) so that they may be referenced more easily. Each issue listed on his site is quite comprehensive, so please allow me a few days between each post to write each artice in this series. It is quite an undertaking! With all that said, let me at last get to tackling the first issue on his website – The Civil Rights Issue:

The Problem:

As Barack Obama sees it, minorities receive unequal treatment by employers, the police and our criminal justice system. Women, particularly minority women, Obama points out, receive less pay than white men [Obama does not mention of minority men, here. Also, he doesn’t make any mention of the fact that women miss work far more often than men due to family and medical issues and he does not address the fact that women cost businesses more in health care plan expenses and maternity leave. Check with your company’s personnel department and see the numbers for yourself! I can also point out that many women leave the workplace early to have children and/or enter it late for the very same reasons, thereby limiting their ascensions on the corporate ladder. None of these things matter, however. It’s far easier to blame the big, bad, white men for the disparities. Being a white man, I know I rarely miss a meeting at my local S.W.A.M. (Suppress Women And Minorities) chapter. Oh, I forgot … my female boss (who makes more than me) didn’t invite me to attend! (How she slipped through the cracks, I’ll never know)].

Next, Barack Obama states that hate crimes have risen in the last two years by eight percent. [Correct me if I’m wrong here; but, doesn’t that coincide with about the same time that the Democrats took over with a majority in Congress? He clearly must be mistaken; the Democrats would never let something like that happen on their watch!]

He also makes a vague reference to an [ahem] unnamed study that “discovered numerous efforts to intimidate, mislead and suppress minority voters.” [With sources like that, I can only imagine that he has a great future ahead of him as a reporter or columnist with The New York Times or Cosmopolitan Magazine if this political thing doesn’t pan out for him.]

Then [and I was waiting for it], Barack Obama plays the race card, stating that Hispanics and African Americans are twice as likely as whites to undergo abuses by law enforcement officials – offenses which include being subdued and arrested. [I was shocked when I read this because, we all know that only the Clintons and the Republican “hate machine” are capable of using race as an issue. I don’t know; maybe it’s just that I live in a different “white” world, right next door to my Puerto Rican and African American neighbors. None of them has ever been harassed by police, arrested or subdued while living next to me. Oops, I forgot … one normally has to commit some kind of a crime for that to occur!]

Speaking of crimes, Barack Obama plays his second race card [Now he has a pair!], asserting that crack cocaine users are being discriminated against versus powder cocaine users by receiving harsher sentences. He attributes this to the “fact?” [not cited, again] that most crack cocaine users are black and powder cocaine users are white.

The Solution:

What does Barack Obama suggest we do to CHANGE these outrageous things? Bear in mind that many of these things are state and local level issues. In the interests of plodding ahead, however, I’ll ignore that trivial fact.

Strengthen Civil Rights Enforcement

Barack Obama says he’ll strengthen civil rights enforcement by reversing “the politicization that has occurred in the Bush Administration’s Department of Justice.” [Since a Democrat-controlled Congress approved of Justice Samuel Alito, I can only assume that he is taking a shot at his own Party, here. Or, could it be that the inexperienced Obama believes that Alito is the first Supreme Court Justice ever to have been nominated where there may have been a political agenda involved?] He adds to this by saying he will “put an end to the ideological litmus tests used to fill positions within the Civil Rights Division.” [I don’t know if many people know what that means but it sure sounds good! Here, Barack Obama is saying that he doesn’t care what the ideological positions are of anybody who works within the Civil Rights Division of the federal government. Bigots, fascists, racists and hate mongerers of all sorts can breathe a sigh of relief here; they all will still be able to get a job overseeing civil rights in the Obama Administration!]

Combat Employment Discrimination

Barack Obama states he will combat employment discrimination by working to “overturn the Supreme Court’s recent ruling that curtails racial minorities’ and women’s ability to challenge pay discrimination.” [Maybe Obama thinks that by becoming the President of the United States, he will inherit some unbelievable gift of persuasion. Or, could it be that Obama may just have to “engage in the politicization … of the Department of Justice” himself, in order to nominate a judge who shares his own ideology in this regard?]

Barack Obama’s web site then adds that “he will also pass the Fair Pay Act to ensure that women receive equal pay for equal work and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.” [Here, I have to repeat myself. Congress passes laws, not Presidents. If he wanted to get these laws passed, why didn’t he do it when it was his job? Oh, right … he only really served two years of his term. It’s hard to get much done in so little time and with so little experience. Women and those that are sexually disoriented, don’t get me wrong here; I absolutely think you deserve exactly the same amount of pay as men, straight or otherwise, as long as you are providing the same exact amount of work. In my white, straight, man-ruled world, I have seen the discrimination that is described here. I have worked for two companies that were owned by women where all of the managers were women, even though there was a fifty-fifty split of men and women employees. I’m sure none of us menfolk was qualified to be a manager, however.]

Expand Hate Crimes Statutes

Barack Obama says he will strengthen federal hate crime legislation and expand hate crimes protection by “passing the Matthew Shepherd Act” and that he will “reinvigorate enforcement at the Department of Justice’s Criminal Section.” [Bravo to you on this, Barack Obama! Anybody who is involved in hate crimes should absolutely be subject to the harshest of punishments. Unfortunately, Obama is stating that he will be able to control not just one, but now both of the other branches of the federal government from the Executive Branch.]

End Deceptive Voting Practices

Barack Obama says that he will end deceptive voting practices by signing into law his own legislation that “establishes harsh penalties for those who have engaged in voter fraud and provides voters who have been misinformed with accurate and full information so they can vote.” [Maybe Barack has something here. The easiest way to ensure that your law is signed, is to switch seats quickly! This bill is near and dear to Barack Obama’s heart, I know. His cronies managed to uncover petition fraud in Barack Obama’s run for the only other “elected” position that he held prior to becoming a U.S. Senator by eliminating all five of his opponents in his run for the Illinois State Senate seat. He won a landslide victory against “unopposed.” Seriously, though, does anybody have a problem with Barack’s position on this one? I think you’d be hard-pressed to find any politician who would openly oppose this type of legislation. Hardly an election-breaker I would think, however.]

End Racial Profiling

Barack Obama says he will “ban racial profiling by federal law enforcement agencies and provide federal incentives to state and local police departments to prohibit the practice.” [Here, Barack Obama is playing race card number three (he now has three of a kind!). I’ll let him slide, though, since he will undoubtedly make many terrorists happy with this one. I mean, happy terrorists don’t hurt people right? He didn’t say all of his CHANGES would be good for the country, did he? I’m sure it will make us look better in the eyes of the rest of the world, whose opinion seems to matter to him more than those of his own countrymen. It’s no wonder why Hamas has endorsed Barack Obama as President!]

Reduce Crime Recidivism by Providing Ex-Offender Support

Here, Obama says he will “provide job training, substance abuse and mental health counseling to ex-offenders, so that they are successfully re-integrated into society.” He adds that he will also “create a prison-to-work incentive program to improve ex-offender employment and job retention rates.” [Why not? If you’re going to support the rights of terrorists, you certainly need to support your country’s own criminals! Hey, I’m all for alternatives to prison for drug offenders if they work better, but who’s paying for all of the mental health counselors here, anyway? I don’t know how he plans to get the second part of this plan to work, however. There is hardly a company left in this country that has a personnel department that doesn’t require a pre-employment background check and drug screening. Even if they have cleaned up their act drugwise, they’ll never get a decent company to hire them. The slightest glitch on your criminal record will get you disqualified for almost every job nowadays. He needs to add “and I will have passed into law, a bill that prohibits companies from doing any pre-employment background checks or drug screening.” That should work! I hope those with children in daycare don’t have a problem with it, though. It should also be pointed out that these are most certainly state issues and one that the federal government can’t and shouldn’t have any hand in dealing with. That is, unless you are of the liberal mindset that every aspect of your life needs to be controlled by the federal government. I mean, what do we really need all of these different states for anyway?]

Eliminate Sentencing Disparities

Obama believes the disparity between sentencing crack and powder-based cocaine is wrong and should be completely eliminated. [I covered this at the beginning of the article. He only makes a statement about what is wrong with America here but offers no solution about the role of the federal government in implementing this CHANGE. Those that peruse his website further will find that Barack Obama feels this CHANGE is necessary in order to eliminate the racial gap created by laws that treat blacks (crack users) to harsher penalties than whites (powdered cokeheads). Congratulations Barack, you have now played your fourth race card and we are only on issue #1 out of twenty-eight! (Maybe he will win the election; four of a kind is awful hard to beat!)]

Expand The Use of Drug Courts

Barack Obama’s final act under the heading of civil rights will be to expand the use of drug courts. He says this will give “first-time, non-violent offenders a chance to serve their sentence, where appropriate, in the type of drug rehabilitation programs that have proven to work better than a prison term in changing bad behavior.” [Holy cow! I thought the mental health counselors were going to be expensive. Now he wants the federal government (meaning the taxpayers) to pay for drug rehabilitation centers for all first time drug offenders. I don’t know about all states, but don’t most states give probation to first time offenders in exchange for them entering a drug treatment program? Sure, the offender has to pay a fairly small fee for the treatment program but; since they are “proven” (no study cited) to work so well, these people should have plenty of money left over that they would otherwise have been spending on drugs. I mean really, it worked so well for Lindsay Lohan, right?]

Whew, that was only issue number one! I can’t believe I actually thought I could cover all twenty-eight issues listed on his website in one post. My next post will parse the issue of “Disabilities” as outlined on Barack Obama’s website. Maybe on that issue, I’ll find a reason to vote for him!