I grew up in a small town in rural Georgia. I can still remember walking past the water fountains in the court house; two of them side by side. Removed were the signs over them directing the thirsty person from which one to drink, but the the two fountains were still there almost as if monuments to a not so distant history of segregation.
As a child in the 60's I was too young to know the significance of two fountains; that there actually was a time when people, just because of the pigment in their skin, were treated differently; and by differently I mean badly.
Fast forward forty years and my how things have changed. America has progressed quite a bit; there is a Secretary of State, and a Supreme Court Justice, and a presumptive nominee for president, to name a few, with dark pigmented skin. One might conclude that racism is itself in the process of becoming history. This would be true too if racism were defined today as it was forty years ago; that definition being the oppression of blacks by whites. Many have discovered however that there is power to be gained by convincing blacks that not much has changed in the last half century. Since it is obvious that things have changed, the very word racism necessarily morphed into something totally different so that today it has a different application than did the same word in the sixties. It is now almost indistinguishable from the word ideology. Granted these two words have different meanings, but in the political realm on the topic of race relations they overlap and merge. This is evidenced by Bill Clinton, a white man, being called the first black president, and by Clarence Tomas, a black man, facing stiff opposition from blacks to a life time appointment to, I would argue, one of the most powerful positions in this land.
In conclusion, even though I voted for a black man for president (Alan Keys, I liked his polices) before doing so was cool, I can't help but to feel that I, and many others like me, will be seen as a racist because we oppose Obama due to his policies. If and when this happens I will have to remember to not become defensive because in the current sense of the word it might be true. It just goes to show that when old words get new meanings it causes confusion and communication breaks down; this I fear is something we can expect an abundance of as we make our way though this election season.
Majesty and Humility - David's Psalm 8 begins with the glorious, "O LORD, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens...