Exception that proves the rule

While calling President Obama a socialist, some arch-conservatives are using him as reason to oppose affirmative action in the courts.
Their contention is that his election proves that America is a color-blind society.
Facts have never been necessary to oppose affirmative action, but having a black president has a certain surface salience.
In reality, the election of President Obama is the exception that demonstrates the rule. His election as president was possible because he was able to counteract the factors which hold back so many other African-Americans, and also take advantage of diversity programs which opened doors to him.
Consider the fact that Obama had a three-to-one fundraising advantage over the great-grandson of a former Mississippi slaveholder.
Of his ability to remind voters of his white relatives.
He was able to make white privilege work for him.
The election helps quantify the magnitude of the advantages that white have. Programs that level the playing field need to have the robustness of an Obama campaign, instead of wilting in the heat of demogougery.
The Sotomayor nomination has brought up the term “identity politics”, a loaded phrase which is intended to put advocates of equal opportunity on the defensive.
The fact that a black President and Latina nominee have to apologize for touting her heritage is all the more evidence that their ascension does not prove that discrimination is ended or even abated.


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