The Autistic Journalist

Using words to explain the mind

A long way to go.

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Iofficial_portrait_of_barack_obamat’s the view I have regarding recognition and acceptance with the autism community. I’ll delve into that further as April approaches (April is autism awareness month).

That doesn’t mean other sociological topics are in the clear. I read an article from the Associated Press published in the Star Tribune (sad to see that paper fall apart) reporting that racial stereotypes, falsehoods that were debunked long ago and general disdain toward Obama because of his race.

The reporter says Obama will likely continue to face pressure from stereotypes and viral myths, even though he was quoted saying people are judging him on his track record. However, exit polls from the 2008 election said 17 percent of all voters considered race as a factor in voting, and two out of three in that group voted for McCain.

A fellow blogger has posted some racial stereotyping taking place since Obama was elected.

I don’t discuss politics too much because I know it can fuel a lot of unneccessary fires, but Obama’s response mirrors how he handled race during the campaign: he acknowledged it but didn’t rest on it. Obama isn’t afraid to discuss race, but in his mind, there are more important issues to resolve before cultural barriers are tackled. It’s hard to disagree.

A few people in my multiracial documentary told me racism will never be completely eradicated. I feel the same way, especially with the racism coverage after Obama’s election and FOX News jumping on anything that could smear Obama before the election (then again, they would’ve done that no matter who the DFL candidate was). Some people (probably white) are unable to accept that “one of them” isn’t in the White House, that white privilege (rightfully) lost some of its power. Exit polls didn’t address this, but it would be curious to see how many McCain voters believed in the myths about Obama’s citizenship and religious background. I don’t think the percentage would be high, but it could reveal a few things.

Before you accuse me of being a DFL supporter, I’m not. This blog is meant to make people think about racism in the Obama era and how we still have problems despite electing an African-American biracial President and 40+ years after the Civil Rights Act was passed.

There are similar themes in the autism community regarding its perception and cause. Autism hasn’t been around long enough to associate too many stereotypes with the disability, but you’ll have to wait for my next post to hear my discussion on that.


Written by TheSportsBrain

March 30, 2009 at 5:26 pm

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