Barack Obama has come under some, in my view, very fair and timely criticism for releasing his inner Al Sharpton last week and engaging in a very juvenile effort at that old Democrat standby, racebaiting.
If anyone thinks that Obama is truly a "black" candidate, by this I mean in the political philosophy sense that we equate with Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Cornel West, and others constantly yammering over how they are being held down and back, they are mistaken.
Obama has shown he is capable of using his racial heritage to bludgeon critics but other than his hanging out the with the incendiary racist Reverend Jeremiah Wright, who we must acknowledge is not the man Senator Obama has known for 20 years.there is little in his history to indicate any great degree of Afrocentrism or an affinity for racial politics.
In fact, pretty much the opposite.Today's Washington Post has an bit of a puff piece on the Obama campaign. There were some interesting nuggets like the lede which parallels some discussions we contributors have had offline on the subject:
CHICAGO -- The bustling Obama headquarters on North Michigan Avenue invites comparisons to a start-up, teeming with young people in jeans clutching BlackBerrys as they walk through the halls. Yet in Democratic circles, another, potentially less welcome, parallel is being made: to the tight-knit and tight-lipped organization eight years ago of George W. Bush.
Decisions are guarded with extreme secrecy, none more so than the upcoming vice presidential selection, and that has occasionally irked members of Congress. In recent days, as Republicans publicly accused Sen. Barack Obama of appearing presumptuous during his presidential-style trip to Europe, Democrats privately expressed concerns that Obama has become too Chicago-centric, relying on his inner circle rather than a broader group that encourages input from Washington and elsewhere.
What was more interesting was a photo taken of Obama's campaign headquarters, other than the nascent cult of personality being developed there. I apologize for the quality but it doesn't appear on line, as far as I can determine, and this is a scan of the newspaper photo.
Take a look at the faces. Truly a staff that looks like America. If you ignore the part that isn't white and between 25 and 35. But it serves as an inspiration for a good campaign song for Senator Obama.