Elwood Watson: Ugly Resistance Against the President Continues





[Dr. Elwood Watson is a full professor of history and African-American studies at East Tennessee State University.]

Read the following examples:

  • On April 15 (income tax day), more than 10,000 members of the recently formed tea party group converged on the nation’s capital to voice their resentment and erratic anger at government and at President Obama in particular.
  • Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell initially announced that the state had proclaimed April as confederate history month without including any mention of the institution of slavery. Afterward he acknowledged that he had made a “minor mistake.” 
  • Minnesota representative Michelle Bachman enthusiastically announced to an enraged crowd of tea partiers that she would do “everything in her power” to ensure that President Obama was a one-term president.

As you can infer from the aforementioned examples, things are getting more and more vile in the often acerbic world of right-wing politics. For over a year we have seen the “hear all evil, see all evil, fear all evil” birthers continue onward with their pathetic, yet perversely amusing claim that the president is not an American citizen and is thus illegitimate to hold the title of commander–in-chief. Although they have gotten slightly quieter, we still hear the sporadic rumbles of the “Obama is a closet Muslim” crowd.  Not to be left out of the madness, a number of right-wing commentators led by Fox News, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and their lesser known wanabees recite on a daily basis that the president’s goal is to transform our nation into a “socialist state.” 

What is baffling to most rational thinking Americans (I place myself in this group) is the fact that these rabid, xenophobic individuals appear to be impervious to the fact that, if our current president had not been born on American soil and lacked the required credentials of American citizenship, the Clinton, Edwards, McCain and other rival campaigns along with the Republican National Committee (RNC) would have, without hesitation, exposed this “supposed fact” during the 2008 presidential campaign. In fact, it probably would have been the most explosive October surprise in the history of any presidential election campaign....



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