The Obama Administration: Torn Between Two Lovers
Actually, the mention of “lovers” in the title is figurative, not literal…and there are more than just two lovers involved in this scenario.
We’ve all seen situations of this sort, where some nonsensical Romeo (or Romeona as the case may be) woos two or more lovers at the same time, constantly trying to ride that fine line between them, never making a full commitment to any of them, etc. There are always the lines of “But baby, you mean so much to me” and “I need you so much”, always spoken to each of the lovers in a way that conveys sincerity and trustworthiness. It usually ends up backfiring on the erstwhile Romeo sooner or later, doesn’t it? And the two or more would-be-maybe-part-time lovers who bought into it while it was going on end up feeling like idiots who sold themselves really short.
Well, this is the kind of situation that the Obama admin has been facing lately between the black community and the Hispanic community.
Words of “We are the ones that we have been waiting for” still hang in the air, reminding people of what is of yet unrequited promises of attention to their cause, but what it comes down to is that the great “fundamental transformation of America” and “sharing the wealth” isn’t going exactly as planned.
What was identified as a supply-side economic crisis a year ago has turned into a demand-side crisis. Folks are tightening their belts, altering their spending patterns from what existed in the past. This has contributed a stagnant demand for product and services, which has stalled any significant job growth in the private sector of our economy. The outcome being that unemployment has been staying higher than “expected”.
As much it hurts all of us, it is having greater impact on the black community than it is on other sectors of our population.
While unemployment among the general population is about 9.1 percent, it’s at 16.2 percent African Americans, and a bit higher still for African American males.
CBS News correspondent Michelle Miller reports that, historically, the unemployment rate for African Americans has always been higher than the national average. However, now it’s at Depression-era levels. The most recent figures show African American joblessness at 16.2 percent. For black males, it’s at 17.5 percent; And for black teens, it’s nearly 41 percent
One of the reasons that black unemployment is so high is that due to demographics and to the circumstances involved at local levels, a lot of people in the black community are finding themselves competing against illegal immigrants for jobs.
That’s one side of this love triangle. On the other side of this triangle stands the Hispanic community.
Leaders of a national Hispanic organization are criticizing President Barack Obama for skipping their annual conference for the third consecutive year after he promised as a candidate in 2008 that he would return as president.
Some members of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials also are questioning Obama’s commitment to immigration reform, noting that deportations have increased under his watch — even as the administration intensifies its outreach for Hispanic votes.
So, this love triangle is getting really interesting right about now. The Obama team needs strong support from both sectors in the election in 2012. If the Obama admin provides preferential treatment to Hispanics (particularly illegal immigrants), this could alienate a block of the black vote. If the Obama admin doesn’t provide preferential treatment to Hispanics (illegal ones, not legal ones), this could alienate a block of the Hispanic vote.
I have to admit that it’s hilarious watching the WH mouth-pieces try to smooth this one over.
Luis Miranda, a White House spokesman, said the administration has shown “unprecedented” work and outreach on issues important to Hispanics.
“The scope of the president’s efforts on behalf of Latinos and all Americans is not defined by his participation at one event, but rather by the work carried out every day to put our economy back on track and spur job creation, improve access to health care, strengthen education and reform our immigration system so that it meets America’s 21st century needs,” Miranda said.
At this point, an outside observer might be saying to themselves, “Just make up your mind and make a commitment one way or the other already”, right?
The admin won’t do it, and there are two reasons why they wont’ do it. The first reason is that there was a prior commitment to an ideology that overrides all other possible commitments. That’s Obama’s first true love, politically speaking.
And the second reason is that President Obama is getting ready to try to woo Independents back big time.
Yeah, they’ll just string both blacks and Hispanics along, under the pretense of “needing more time”. (Can’t you just hear a Romeo saying that? “I need more time, baby.”) But by making no solid commitment to either side, is it possible they could lose BOTH?
You know, I’m really glad I’m a conservative, because it means I’m not the admin’s “type”.