Will the outcome of the US Presidential election in the USA be affected by the fact that Barack Obama is black?
Some journalists, commentators and academics have suggested that the West has entered a period of post-racism. They would like to believe that the scars of racism and economic exclusion no longer affect black people in Europe and America. If that is true then the US presidential election should not be tainted by racism against Barack Obama. But do you think that this is a fantasy?
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Racism not extinct + Black rights apparent = balance
Racism is certainly not extinct, it exists in many areas of society and so it will inevitably affect politics. Some people will not vote for Obama and will instead vote for the competition on the basis of trying to prevent Obama becoming the president.
However, there are the people on the other side of the coin. There are people, of all racial segments of society, who think it is high time America had a black president, and will vote for him purely on this basis.
With these two groups voting for and against Obama purely because of his ethnicity, canceling each other out, whether Obama get voted in or not will depend on people voting for policy reasons.
The balance will probably tilt towards people NOT voting for him because he is black. In the shocking words of one voter quoted on the BBC: "My dad won't allow a black man in the house, he's not about to let one be in the white house". Furthermore, people probably lie to pollsters when asked whether race is an issue foe them in order to avoid embarassment, so we can expect more people to vote against him than what the statistics show.
What do you think?