Ignorance Vs. Intellect [Guest Blogger]

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Joshua Johnson is our latest NewsOne Guest Blogger. The 22-year-old mass communications student weighs in on the backlash of Barack Obama‘s historic re-election. If you want your voice to be heard on any particular news topic, email your thoughts to Guestblogger@newsone.com and be sure to place GUESTBLOGGER in the subject line. We want to hear from you!

I’m disappointed. I’m afraid we may not be living in Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream. This may be the dream deferred. You may have known this. I’m just a young guy; indulge my ignorance.

The energy and excitement of President Obama supporters on the college campus I was on Tuesday evening when the results were announced could be felt everywhere. It was definitely a time of excitement.

Wednesday morning, I woke up to a slightly different feeling. I went to my Facebook news feed and there were people arguing with their Caucasian Facebook friends who were taking racist jabs at the president.

I even saw one myself that said, “The only thing funnier than Obamas big ears and wanna be white wife is that 99% of America think he’s black too. Put him on dialysis and filter the trash out his blood and the US is still screwed.. this isn’t racist.. this is real.”

And what trash is it that is in his blood? I think we get what’s being conveyed here.

Then, you have Bill O’ Reilly on Fox News on election night before the results were known saying that people want stuff and that’s the platform upon which Obama ran. He said that, “The white establishment is now the minority,” and that blacks and Hispanics would overwhelmingly vote for Obama.

What’s really going on here?

To counter those sentiments, I saw all sorts of, “My President’s Black”-esque things floating around. There were all sorts of the POTUS is my n-word and if you don’t like it, get over it, type remarks coming from the African American side of support. The counterarguments were just as ignorant as the racial slurs.

For a second, I felt bad about constantly reminding fellow Obama supporters that we should never use his race as our sole reasoning for voting for him.

I thought about the state of America. We’re not in the place of progress that some people would like to think we are. Racism still abounds. Usually, it’s an underground thing. The election caused some bitter feelings that were always there to rise to the surface.

Still, I stand with what I said. We can’t fight ignorance and vitriol with ignorance and vitriol. When someone attacks us with hateful statements we should be knowledgeable enough to remind them that whites surpass blacks among those who receive food stamps in America or how if you look at a map of the Confederacy from the Civil War and look at an electoral vote map from Tuesday night, the confederate states are almost identical to the red states that went to Mitt Romney.

I’m not saying all whites are spewing hateful venom. I’m not saying all blacks are countering hate with hate. I’m saying that it’s happening way more than one would expect it too, and we need to be properly armed for this battle.

We’re still trying to reach the dream. Blacks, Hispanics, the LGBTQ community, Liberal Americans and everyone else who isn’t a part of this, “White Establishment,” Bill O’ Reilly speaks of has to be on one accord. Clearly, our voices have the power to control who leads us into the next four years.

Knowing that we have not seen Martin Luther King Jr.’s work fulfilled, we must continue to employ his non-violent action. We’re not being blown down in the street with hoses, but our demographics are being slandered. Be able to stand up and say, “That’s not me, but it may be you,” and be able to tell them why.

Blacks are only 13.1% of the population. I assure you, we are not the problem. To that end, it took more than just blacks and Hispanics who are both minority groups, to reelect the POTUS. The power is in knowing.

Let’s conquer ignorance with intellect.

If you want to be heard, email GuestBlogger@Interactiveone.com. Place “GUESTBLOGGER” in the subject line add your name, your Twitter handle and where you’re from.

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