National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Hate and racist politics have become the ideologies of the day

 |  NCR Today

Mitt Romney's selection of Paul Ryan as his vice presidential running mate is clearly to throw red meat to the extreme right wing of the Republican Party. This only continues the move of the party in that direction since the 2008 election.

The defeat of John McCain that year convinced many of the extreme right that a more moderate candidate like McCain not only couldn't win, but also did not represent the heart and soul of the party. The election of President Barack Obama only exacerbated the takeover of the Republican Party by the extreme right in the disguise of the tea party.

What rankled these people was not only that they lost the election, but they lost it to a black man. Signs or symbols are important in a culture. We respond to them, whether they come in the form of a religious one, such as a cross, or a commercial ad. The same applies in politics. We all have grown up to accept the sign or symbol that an American president is a white male. Some of us, obviously, believe or believed this more than others.

Obama does not match this sign or symbol. Although he is half-white, that's not the sign he conveys, since he clearly in color resembles more his African father. Hence, he is a black president. This was and is unacceptable to some, especially to extreme right-wing Republicans. They associate him with all of their fears about the changing demographics of the country, where in many places race minorities such as blacks and Latinos, Asians and those of Middle Eastern backgrounds represent the majority.

screen-shot_FB-video-promo-9-12.jpgOur Sept. 12-25 edition is in the mail, on its way to subscribers. Take a look inside.

Not a subscriber? Become one today!

They further link these changing demographics to their fears that the country is losing its American values and principles that are being replaced by "foreign" influences ("I want my country back!"). This, of course, is nonsense, but they believe it. When Romney and Ryan, for example, say Obama is "destroying the country," what do they mean by this? When have we ever heard this before where a duly-elected president is accused almost of treason?

No, this is hate and racist politics, and it has to be called out. I'm not saying Romney and Ryan are racists, but they and their extreme supporters are using code words and signs and symbols that, in my opinion, convey racist implications. Good Americans of whatever political allegiance have to stand up and not allow this type of divisive politics to take over. We have to take our country back.

NCR Comment code: (Comments can be found below)

Before you can post a comment, you must verify your email address at Disqus.com/verify.
Comments from unverified email addresses will be deleted.

  • Be respectful. Do not attack the writer. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the original idea will be deleted. NCR reserves the right to close comment threads when discussions are no longer productive.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report abuse" button. Once a comment has been flagged, an NCR staff member will investigate.

For more detailed guidelines, visit our User Guidelines page.

For help on how to post a comment, visit our reference page.

 

Feature-flag_GSR_start-reading.jpg

NCR Email Alerts

 

In This Issue

September 12-25, 2014

09-12-2014.jpg

Not all of our content is online. Subscribe to receive all the news and features you won't find anywhere else.